As Andy has reported several times over the last few weeks, Chick-fil-A and its Winshape Foundation have found themselves embroiled in controversy surrounding their involvement with anti-gay, anti-equality groups such as Pennsylvania Family Institute and, natch, even NOM.
Today's NY Times features an article that mentions the extreme Christian attitudes found at the company:
The company’s Christian culture and its strict hiring practices, which require potential operators to discuss their marital status and civic and church involvement, have attracted controversy before, including a 2002 lawsuit brought by a Muslim restaurant owner in Houston who said he was fired because he did not pray to Jesus with other employees at a training session. The suit was settled.
The sandwiches that will feed people who attend a February seminar, called “The Art of Marriage: Getting to the Heart of God’s Design,” in Harrisburg, Pa., are but a tiny donation. Over the years, the company’s operators, its WinShape Foundation and the Cathy family have given millions of dollars to a variety of causes and programs, including scholarships that require a pledge to follow Christian values, a string of Christian-based foster homes and groups working to defeat same-sex marriage initiatives.
On Friday, students at the Indiana University South Bend successfully fought to have Chick-fil-A removed as a university-endorsed vendor due to the company's relationships with anti-gay organizations.
Yesterday, Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy issued a second response to the controversy (his first was in a video released through Vimeo). This one centers around traditional marriage:
While my family and I believe in the Biblical definition of marriage, we love and respect anyone who disagrees. Chick-fil-A has a long history of trying to encourage and strengthen marriages and families, both within our Chick-fil-A system and with our customers. My father and our Founder/CEO, Truett Cathy, is a role model for the Cathy family and all those who have joined Chick-fil-A. His personal and business values have always reflected a belief in the importance of marriage and family.
He added with the following wherein he claims Chick-Fil-A will no longer associate themselves with political agendas related to marriage: "Chick-fil-A's Corporate Purpose is 'To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us, and to have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A.' As a result, we will not champion any political agendas on marriage and family. This decision has been made, and we understand the importance of it. At the same time, we will continue to offer resources to strengthen marriages and families. To do anything different would be inconsistent with our purpose and belief in Biblical principles."
If you missed his first response, I've posted it again, AFTER THE JUMP.