Here’s a Copy of Boston Mayor Thomas Menino’s Letter to Chick-Fil-A Telling Them to ‘Back Out’ of Boston


Over the weekend Brandon posted news that Boston Mayor Thomas Menino had told Chick-Fil-A's Dan Cathy that his anti-gay chicken sandwich chain isn't welcome in the city of Boston because of its anti-gay worldview.

Here's Menino's actual letter.

(thanks itay hod)


  1. Bakeley says

    The AFA and other Christian Supremacist organizations are eager to loudly boycott anything they see as liberal, but when someone does it to their own worldview, they screech that America itself is being betrayed. I love that Mayor Menino did this.

  2. quality says

    I applaud the mayor’s motives, but really am not happy with the method he is trying to use. Perkins of AFA has suggested that Texans keep Starbucks from opening in their state as a retribution to Boston. That isn’t right. I think the Boston mayor is great for coming to the defense of marriage equality, but I think his efforts are better spent on working for anti-discrimination laws like ENDA and the overturn of DOMA rather than targeting companies for their, admittedly, hateful politics.

  3. NeverEclipsed81 says

    They should point out that Chick-Fil-A is not in a position to open up any stores in large liberal areas, ie the center of Boston..

  4. One small problem says

    One small, minor problem: the Mayor’s position, if acted upon, would be a blatant, obvious, profound violation of the First Amendment of the Constitution. As always, imagine the same scenario applying in the opposite direction: imagine that a gay-marriage-supporting business were denied building permits and licenses on the basis of its political activities. Then the unconstitutionality would be clear to all, and the authors of this site would use thousands of adjectives to describe how hateful, bigoted, mean-spirited, bullying, etc. the actions were.

  5. says

    Predictably, sadly, the gay Uncle Toms are missing the point. Boston’s Mayor is promoting Equality. NOM’s Dump Starbucks campaign and Chick-fil-A are promoting Inequality, so HOW are they [im]moral equals? Martin Luther King, Jr.’s, mentor, the late, great gay and black civil rights icon Bayard Rustin observed that though they never succeeded in passing a federal anti-lynching law they did succeed in making the idea so reprehensible to the public that lynching as a veritable institution was brought down. The Mayor isn’t technically banning them from Boston [though, if they refused to hire gays he could]. He’s calling them out—just like the lynch mobs and other racists came to be by anyone who wanted to be thought of as decent, as a good American.

    “Our job is not to get those people who dislike us to love us. Nor was our aim in the civil rights movement to get prejudiced white people to love us. Our aim was to try to create the kind of America, legislatively, morally, and psychologically, such that even though some whites continued to hate us, they could not openly manifest that hate. That’s our job today: to control the extent to which people can publicly manifest antigay sentiment.” – Bayard Rustin.

  6. Gregoire says

    One Small Problem,
    Except that Menino isn’t blocking Chik-Fil-A legally. He’s just using harsh words. It is not being ‘acted upon’. He’s just saying you would not be welcome here.

    And actually, gay owned and operated businesses have received unfair treatment in other cities, countless times. So I’m not really sure what point you’re trying to make other than — let me be the contrarian.

  7. says

    “one small problem”, if you’re an American you’d do well to get better acquainted with what the First Amendment actually is, and means.

    Because your post didn’t actually make sense.

  8. Brad says

    Except it’s not a problem because he hasn’t said “you’re not allowed to come here”. He’s said “I, as the elected official of the people of Boston, think you’re not a good fit here and we the people aren’t going to support your restaurant here.”

    Chic-Fil-A can still open their store wherever they want, they’re just on warning that it may not go over well. This is a prime example of “flexing political muscle” and more politicians need to do it for their constituents.

  9. Rob says

    What’s important here is the push back against the bigotry. This is a GREAT letter and it sets the tone for the necessary response to increasingly maringalize the haters. Go Boston!

  10. CVP says

    Sorry One Small Problem but the First Amendment doesn’t address at all anything about prohibiting a business from opening up shop, anywhere. Nice try, though. Keep apologizing, too.

  11. candideinnc says

    Brad, Bedwell and others–I don’t know what legal steps the Boston mayor can or will take in this matter. However, Joemygod is reporting that in Chicago, a city councilman is working to deny permits to CFA to open businesses in his district, and this has been said to be like what the Boston mayor is doing. If Menino is simply standing up for marriage equality, fine and well. But I am with those that have concerns about using permitting powers to punish businesses. I can easily see gay businesses being targeted by the right wingers.

  12. created equal says

    Thomas Menino is my new hero, and the awesome city of Boston will be my next vacation spot! Mr. Menino, history will remember you very fondly and well for this.

    I’d love to see organized, “Join the Impact”-style peaceful, educational protests at Chick-Fil-A outlets all around the country. MOST ESPECIALLY at (but limited to) any college campus food courts!!!

    Another thing that would be cool would be to encourage and entice current Chick-Fil-A personnel to transfer to jobs not at Chick-Fil-A. Would love to see such an “exodus” movement. If I had a business where I needed low- and medium-skill employees, customer service workers, or managers of varying levels, I would like to personally recruit current Chick-Fil-A employees to get them outta there.

    Also, let’s not lose sight of the fact that Chick-Fil-A sells terribly unhealthful, obesity and diabetes-promoting food. I stay the hell away from Chick-Fil-A (hey, that rhymes) for that reason alone. (I’m not such it’s “Christian” to peddle body-harming stuff like that.)

    OK – I encourage free use of this open-source slogan: “STAY AWAY from Chick-Fil-A.”

  13. cjt says

    Ugh, when people screech about the 1st Amendment re: boycotts. So you’re allowed to have a bigoted position, but I cannot oppose you and choose to spend my money elsewhere? When did the 1st Amendment become a one-way street?

    You want to be a bigot, fine, but I’m not going to give you my money. The major isn’t telling them they can’t come to Boston, he’s saying that Boston doesn’t want them. Don’t bother.

  14. CVP says

    Further, legally this mayor could prevent this company from opening up shop in Massachusetts because of that state’s hate crimes legislation. There’s incontrovertible proof that this company has funded hate groups listed on the SPLC site.

  15. says

    what are some of you talking about? you’re afraid bigots will START to target gay of gay friendly businesses?

    where have you BEEN for the last 50 years? dudes. it’s already happening. this is about turning the tables.

    please invest in a spine.

  16. SFshawn says

    Thank you Mayor Menino!
    I appreciate when leaders actually LEAD and especially when it calls out blatent homophobia and bigotry by all the supposedly ‘religious’ freaks,zealots and wingnuts. One has to wonder if any of these churches actually promote love,tolerance and respect for their fellow human beings or if they are all just money grubbing,anti-tax paying,control freaks?

  17. Tamika says

    Government regulates many things about many kinds of businesses; there would be nothing unconstitutional about denying a business permit for fomenting hate and violence against a segment of the population. Free speech does not mean you get a free pass.

  18. says

    There is a First Amendment right for bigoted business owners to say any ignorant thing they want. Mr. Cathy exercised that right, and he can keep on exercising it. (Just as the Mayor of Boston has used his right to free speech to respond that, in his opinion, CFA is not welcome in Boston because its family values are at odds with MA family values.) That doesn’t mean that CFA has a first amendment right to open on any street corner it pleases. The right to open a business is not at all the same as the right to speak your mind. Citizens have a say. They can say No, and if a company wants to fight back, let them.

    And, yes, people in Texas or wherever could say that a gay-supportive business is not welcome there, but we shouldn’t be afraid of that because rightness is on our side. We know that Chick-Fil-A worked directly to prevent gay people from civil rights. Which civil rights are gay-supportive businesses working to take away from anyone? NONE. So let some mayor try to explain that one and see the response he’ll get from the business world. We shouldn’t hide from such bigots in 2012–tell them to Bring It On.

  19. Icebloo says

    We need to keep up the pressure on these right wing crazies ! At the end of the day money talks. Even for the CEO job at this company. If his company continues to lose money because the CEO isn’t smart enough to keep his hateful mouth shut then he will be pushed out of the job.

    BOYCOTT Chick-Fil-A people – it’s very easy to do. I have NEVER eaten there for this very reason and I have them all around me in my neighborhood.

  20. says

    People have the right to choose!!! Chick-Fil-A. is a company who obey God’s law which is God created Man and Woman; therefore, only Man and Woman get married!!!! We are living in the last days–that why we have more homosexuals than ever and have no regard for God. I know true Christians going to be persecuted for their faith in God/Jesus, but it is okay we have enternal destiny. True believers should not be intimidated by the world we live in.

  21. Kelsey says

    Perhaps I am reading this wrong, but he is not BANNING Chick-Fil-A. He is stating that there isn’t a place for it in their city figuratively. I am glad we have the public space to allow Chick-Fil-A to state what they believe but also glad the ethical reaction from many people, including the mayor, is that it’s still a bigoted statement to make

  22. jennifer says

    who the heck is menino to make up the rules! last i checked, we are a country built on our beliefs, yet when it doesn’t agree upon the ‘left’ beliefs then it needs to be rid of. that is a crock of …t!! i am from massachusetts and am glad that i do not and will never vote for you menino. get out and give someone else a chance!!!

  23. Bob R says

    I doubt the mayor can actually stop Chik Fil A from opening a restaurant if they are determined to do so. However, businesses are often given tax breaks and incentives by local government. In addition, local government can make it an expensive living hell trying to get permits, CO’s, building and zoning variances and inspections, health certificates, etc. The mayor can hang Chik Fil A with enough read tape and aggravation that it won’t be worth opening in Boston. Ditto Chicago.

  24. Jean says

    As a man with Christian values I believe Cathy has every right to express them. The man has a right to say how he feels just like everybody else including Mayor Menino. Just be cause Mr. Menino disagrees with his views doesn’t give menino the right to refuse him passage to Boston. The company is an equal rights organization and that’s what’s important. He wants to bring jobs to Boston and God knows we need jobs. I do!

  25. wimsy says

    A right-wing hate group (that also sells chicken) supports Bibllical marriage, and they’re from Georgia.

    Nothing to see here, folks. Excitement’s over. Move along.

  26. Jerry6 says

    It is appropriate that the Mayor of Boston, a City near Plymouth Rock where the first real setelment of people seeking freedom from Religious opresian started what is now the USA.

  27. Your Mother says

    I’m sick of hearing homosexuals calling Christians bigots. When homosexuals are just as big of a bigot that the world has. Maybe you people should go look the word up and compare that definition to how you think instead of calling the kettle black.

    You’re for corruption we are against it. It’s our right! As you think same sex marriage is your right which its not. I’m appalled at the site the very fact that companies support homosexuals and you’re all for it but when companies don’t you’re against them claiming civil rights PLEASE! You haven’t even earned civil rights.

    Bottom line is I with 50% of all true Christians boycott business’s that support the homosexual agenda. Home Depot and Target just to name 2 I have a list of many more and guess what they don’t see a dime of my money. So if its their right to support homosexuals then its our right to oppose it you BIGOTS!

  28. Marie says

    Funny, everyone opinion, morals, etc is accepted but Chic Fil A has different thoughts and it’s murder they write… They call Chic Fil A descriminating, begot, etc. I certainly read a lot of hate in ALL the comments. The Major of Boston – seems to be one sided pro gays but wasn’t he voted in to represent all – what a closed minded idiot. Chicago needs ANYONE who wants to build there but wants to refuse opportunities for his voters

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