Fast-food restaurant chain Chick-Fil-A has provoked a controversy over statements made by founder Truett Cathy about his anti-gay marriage position. The remarks were made during several interviews, including one in The Baptist Press, which also confirmed that Chick-Fil-A has made significant financial contributions to anti-gay organizations including Exodus International and the Family Research Council. The company has released a statement on its Facebook page in response to a swell of consumer backlash.
One of the most rousing comments came from an interview Cathy gave during “The Ken Coleman Show,” reports The Huffington Post: “I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say ‘we know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage’ and I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we have the audacity to define what marriage is about.”
After a swell of consumer comments, Chick-Fil-A released a statement to Facebook that says the company treats every person “with honor, dignity and respect—regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender.” But, the same statement goes on to say that, “From the day Truett Cathy started the company, he began applying biblically-based principles to managing his business.”
It’s been a year marred by controversy for the chain with 1,600 locations nationwide. They made headlines earlier this year when it was revealed they’d filed a lawsuit against Bo Muller-Moore, a small Vermont-based t-shirt manufacturer, for using the tagline “Eat More Kale.” Chick-Fil-A claims it infringes on their ad slogan “Eat Mor Chikin”—which accompanies images of cows painting the misspelled quote on billboards and signs. So outraged by the chain’s move, Muller-Moore and filmmaker James Lantz have teamed up to make a documentary on the issue.
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