LGBTQ Groups Set to Protest Burlington Chick-Fil-A Tonight
Members of the gay rights groups Join the Impact MA and GetEQUAL Ma are planning a "same-sex kiss" demonstration at Chick-Fil-A this evening.
The controversy over the Chick-Fil-A's owner's stance in support of traditional marriage continues.
According to a release sent out this morning, members of Join the Impact MA, an action group in support of full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer-identified (LGBTQ) people and GetEQUAL MA, a group demanding full federal legal and social equality for LGBTQ people, will join with activists across the country in protest of Chick-fil-A’s "donations to groups which seek to discriminate against the LGBTQ community."
The activists are planning to protest at the Chick-Fil-A in the Burlington Mall starting at 7 p.m. this evening with a "same-sex kiss" demonstration.
“This protest is about more than just how the CEO of Chick-Fil-A feels about marriage,” said Sasha Kaufmann, a member of GetEQUAL MA and board member of Join the Impact MA, in the release. “Over the past 10 years Chick-Fil-A has donated over $5 million dollars to organizations that fund hate groups like the Family Research Council, which lobbied Congress not to condemn the “Kill the Gays” bill in Uganda that would put LGBT Ugandans in jeopardy of the death penalty, in addition to groups that try to turn gay people straight through conversion therapy.”
The release states that organizers will be kissing their same-sex partners, in addition to becoming “human billboards” to argue their point that supporting the restaurant means eating with "a side of bigotry."
“We are coming out to educate people on how their purchasing power is aiding and abetting hate and violence,” said James Croft of Join the Impact MA. “While each Chick-Fil-A restaurant has independent owners, the company requires every restaurant to give 15% of the restaurant's sales plus 50% of the pre-tax profit to the parent company. Every restaurant and their customers bear some responsibility for discriminatory donations and the harm they cause the LGBTQ community worldwide.”
The controversy began, as reported on Huffington Post and carried on Patch, when Chick-Fil-A president Dan Cathy stated the restaurant business holds to traditional values in regards to homosexuality.
"We are very much supportive of the family -- the biblical definition of the family unit. We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives," Cathy was quoted as saying. "We give God thanks for that ... we know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord, we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles."
On Wednesday, hundreds of people came to eat at Chick-Fil-A during a national "Appreciation Day," started by conservative Mike Huckabee. The day was in support of the restaurant's right to express its views. Many also came out to support the business after Boston Mayor Thomas Menino told the Boston Herald last Thursday that he doesn't want a business in the city "that discriminates against a population."