Dan Cathy, President and COO of Chick-Fil-A, recently was reported as saying in an interview with the Baptist Press that he and Chick-Fil-A are “guilty as charged” when defining family units as one man and one woman. His verbal support of this corporate philosophy validates concerns expressed for well over a year by many LGBT organizations. Chick-Fil-A actively donates and supports organizations working to strip rights away and exclude gays and lesbians from such things as job protection, hospital visitation, inheritance rights, adoption, and marriage.
Equality Matters released information on Chick-Fil-A’s $2 million in donations in 2010 to anti-gay and anti-gay marriage organizations in the United States. It is important to note that all of the organizations referenced have taken an active role toward the discrimination of gays and lesbians.
- Exodus International
- National Christian Foundation
- Fellowship of Christian Athletes
- Family Research Council
- Marriage and Family Foundation
- Georgia Family Council
The largest donation of over $1 million was reported to have gone to Marriage and Family Foundation (focused on fighting against gay marriage).
The organizations referenced mask their intentions as being family-focused and of Christian orientation. This type of positioning is reminiscent of the arguments used to protect Klu Klux Klan organizations during the 50’s/60’s/70’s. Hate groups used the concept of “preservation of family” and “Christian values” to defend their racist agendas/ambitions. Over time these organizations dehumanized entire classes of people, often leading to violence.
One important point: some of the organizations mentioned also provide a variety of quality services for families and Christian communities. Their mission and intention are not exclusively anti-gay.
So, why should you consider boycotting?
How can your little action make a difference?
There’s no way to boycott everything that upsets you, right?
WRONG! Every person has a voice. Every voice has the opportunity to be that rock — skipping across the pond causing a series of lasting ripples.
One example: Oreo. Anti-gay organizations and people were calling for boycotts of Oreo/Nabisco because of their LGBT-friendly Oreo posted on Facebook. In a flood of support for Oreo’s inclusive approach, gays, lesbians, and straight allies joined together to avoid a national boycott. Additionally, fan engagement with Oreo exploded! The Daily Casserole recently ran a story on the impact of these individual voices.
Moving from macro to micro impacts — Each of us should think about the issues we feel strongly about in life. THOSE are the issues we should try to make a difference with on a daily basis.
To quote Edward Hale,
“I am only one; but still I am one. I cannot do everything; but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.”
What happens if you do nothing?
When you do nothing, you collude! By colluding, you give your implicit support for Click-Fil-A’s actions. Actions that lead to the dehumanization of an entire class of people.
What’s collusion? (see below)
verb (used without object), col·lud·ed, col·lud·ing.
1. to act together through a secret understanding, especially with evil or harmful intent.
2. to conspire in a fraud.
Illustration by Mike Ritter, Courtesy The GA Voice
Pablito Richardson, a social justice advocate based in San Francisco, Californai, has worked to fight inequalities across race, gender, sexual orientation and health for the past 13 years. His work has appeared at The New Civil Rights Movement several times before.
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