By Kathleen Gilbert

OAK BROOK, Illinois, October 10, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The American Family Association (AFA) announced the end of a successful boycott yesterday against McDonald’s Corporation. McDonald’s has severed its ties to a homosexual business group and declared neutrality in the culture wars as per AFA’s request.

AFA’s five-month boycott ended after Richard Ellis, former McDonald’s vice president of U.S. communications, left his seat on the board of directors of the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC).  McDonald’s, which was offered the seat after donating $20,000 to the NGLCC, has announced there are no plans to replace Ellis on the board. 

In an email to its franchise owners, McDonald’s said, "It is our policy to not be involved in political and social issues. McDonald’s remains neutral on same sex marriage or any ‘homosexual agenda’ as defined by the American Family Association."

"The franchise owners understood very early that this was an issue that McDonald’s did not need to be involved in from a corporate level and they needed to stick with serving good food products in a convenient way, at a good price," said AFA’s director of special projects Randy Sharp,

Although McDonald’s still appears as an official partner and sponsor on NGLCC’s website, the burger giant told the AFA that the restaurant chain does not plan to renew its membership after it expires in December.

The AFA, a Christian association dedicated to advancing traditional family values, launched the boycott in May shortly after McDonald’s became an official NGLCC sponsor and received a seat on the board with its donation at the chamber’s annual fundraising gala.

"I’m thrilled to join the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce team and ready to get to work," McDonald’s Ellis had said upon joining the NGLCC board in March. "I look forward to playing a role in moving these important initiatives forward."

In response Tim Wildmon, president of the AFA, asked McDonald’s Corp. not to align themselves with the homosexual agenda and to end their association with the NGLCC. 

"This is so strange, because it’s the family that McDonald’s appeals to," Wildmon had said. "And they are promoting a lifestyle that would utterly destroy the traditional family."

In a May 29 letter, McDonald’s global chief diversity officer Pat Harris responded to Wildmon that they would continue to support the NGLCC’s agenda, and would "take this opportunity to reaffirm our position on diversity."

The NGLCC lobbies Congress for homosexual equality, including legal recognition of homosexual unions.

AFA then urged its 2.2 million members to reject McDonald’s and spread the boycott message, which was "not about hiring homosexuals or how homosexuals are treated," but only "about McDonald’s, as a corporation, refusing to remain neutral in the culture wars." 

Now that McDonald’s has declared neutrality regarding homosexuality, said Wildmon, the boycott can finally be declared a success.

"The fact of the matter is they’ve done what we’ve asked them to do," he said.

Wilson added a note of gratitude in the AFA website’s statement.  "We appreciate the decision by McDonald’s to no longer support political activity by homosexual activist organizations," he said.  "You might want to thank your local McDonald’s manager."


  See Related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:

Golden Arches Awash in Rainbow Colors: Family Group Boycotts McDonalds for Support for Homosexual Agenda
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2008/jul/08070402.html

McDonald’s Throws up A Smoke Screen to Cover Support for Homosexual Agenda
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2008/apr/08040905.html

Ronald McDonald Cozies Up To Homosexual Movement
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2008/mar/08033105.html