March 12, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The fast food chain Chick-Fil-A, which has come under attack in the past for the conservative Christian values of its owners, is now fighting homosexual activists who want to see the restaurant kicked off college campuses across the country.
According to a Baptist Press report, the company has been at the center of controversy on at least nine campuses, including Duke University, Northeastern University, and New York University (NYU).
Students who want to see the restaurant kicked off campus or blocked from coming point to its donations to conservative Christian charities as evidence of its “anti-gay” agenda. According to IRS documents, WinShape, a charitable foundation funded by the company, funneled about $2 million to groups such as the Marriage & Family Legacy Fund, Focus on the Family, Exodus International, and the Family Research Council in 2009.
These donations, say NYU freshman Hillary Dworkoski, show that the restaurant is out of sync with her university’s “open and inclusive campus.”
“Maintaining a contract with an anti-gay vendor like Chick-fil-A undermines what makes this university so great,” she wrote, in a Change.org petition asking the school to give the fast food chain the boot.
Dworkoski, a bi-sexual, acknowledges that the Student Senators Council recently voted against removing vendors for “political reasons,” but argues that the school still allows the removal of companies that “violate human or labor rights.”
“As Secretary Clinton recently announced, ‘gay rights are human rights, and human rights are gay rights,’” she writes. “As such, I respectfully request that NYU remove Chick-fil-A from campus.”
The petition has garnered over 11,000 signatures, and may have been the inspiration for a recent prank in which two men accompanied by a person in a cow costume distributed a fake flier on the school’s campus advertising employment opportunities at the restaurant.
The flier warns that applicants should “be prepared to discuss your religion, family history, personal relationships etc upon interviewing,” and that “anyone living in sin need not apply.” A Youtube video by the distributors of the fliers shows one man telling bystanders that Chick-Fil-A is offering a special deal where customers can “trade in” their homosexuality for a free chicken sandwich.
The company fired back against the pranksters last week, writing on its facebook wall that the flier “was not created or distributed by any Chick-fil-A Restaurant,” and that “Chick-fil-A serves all of our customers, team members and potential team members with the utmost honor, dignity and respect.”
Dan Cathy, President and COO of Chick-Fil-A, Inc., also responded to the controversy in a statement last month, saying that the company had “no agenda against anyone.”
“At the heart and soul of our company, we are a family business that serves and values all people regardless of their beliefs or opinions,” Cathy wrote. ‘‘While my family and I believe in the Biblical definition of marriage, we love and respect anyone who disagrees.”
He also said that the company did not “champion any political agendas on marriage and family,” but would “continue to offer resources to strengthen marriages and families.”
Dworkowsi’s petition has not succeeded in removing the company from NYU. School officials told the Huffington Post last week that they did not plan to cancel their contract with Chick-Fil-A.
At Northeastern University in Boston, however, the student senate voted last week to block the restaurant from coming to campus because of the controversy. The company was also successfully ousted last year from Indiana University, where it sold food once a week.