Kathleen Gilbert

Got Chikin? ‘Absolutely mobbed’ - Chick-fil-A restaurants deluged

Kathleen Gilbert
Kathleen Gilbert

WASHINGTON, August 1, 2012 (LifeSitenews.com) - Countless lunchgoers posted pictures on their Facebook pages and Twitter showing their Chick-fil-A stores and drive-thrus stuffed to the gills on Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day, a show of support for CEO Dan Cathy’s Biblical stance on marriage.

Conservative leaders from across America described the chicken-crazed chaos.

Jim Sedlak of the American Life League said that “our little Chick-fil-A in Stafford, Virginia was absolutely mobbed at lunch time,” forcing hungry families to journey over from nearby parking lots.

“They have a very little parking lot, but it was just absolutely mobbed today. It was terrific,” Sedlak told LifeSiteNews.com over the telephone. He said the drive through line “snaked almost twice around the building” and, “from the size of the bags people were carrying out, purchasing LOTS of food.”

“Drive thru 1/4 mile long and an epic crowd outside waiting. No parking for 1/4 mile,” Troy Newman of Pro-Life Nation, which is based in Wichita, Kan., told LSN in an email from his mobile phone. “And it’s 106 degrees! Get me a peach shake.”

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Both mainstream media and local media are taking notice. NPR noted with photos that the Appreciation Day brought out “supportive crowds,” while the Huffington Post posted a liveblog streaming news of luncheoning marriage supporters, contrasted with sentiment from opponents. ABC and CNN noted the “throngs” of “thousands” supporting the event, while the U.K.‘s Guardian newspaper catalogued the chicken-fest from afar with a collection of Twitter updates.

Another marriage supporter said she was “a little disappointed” when she saw no crowd in the morning, but the quarter-mile drive through backup at lunch made up for it.

“Once I got into the place, you could hardly move.  It was rockin’!  And no one seemed to mind the wait.  Everyone was smiling and high-fiving each other,” she said. A friend said the nearby restaurant in a shopping mall was also packed.

Blogger Jill Stanek told LSN simply, “overcrowded” - with a picture of a sign directing Chick-fil-A parking to the home improvement megastore Lowe’s.

Cassie Dignam, marketing manager of the Chick-fil-A in Orland Park, IL, told Stanek the business was “crazy since 9 am” despite having been barely aware of the event themselves.  “We heard about the Chick-fil-A appreciation day through the media. It isn’t sponsored by us,” she said. “We’ve had more customers today than we had at our grand opening.”

As fans line up for a hot chicken lunch at Chick-fil-A Wednesday to support the company’s stance for traditional marriage, one family leader is calling on participants to snap photos of the event at their local restaurant and send them in for publishing on his Facebook page.

Over 600,000 people joined the Facebook event for Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day, vowing to “Eat More Chikin” at their local restaurant.

Bryan Fischer, Director of Issues Analysis for the American Family Association (AFA) and host of talk radio program Focal Point, is calling on all involved in the August 1 “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day” to help him collect proof of participation of those who decided to “eat mor chikin” than usual that day. Photos can be sent to focalpoint (at) afr.net, along with information on the location, what was ordered and when.

“Be Creative and your picture will be more likely posted,” said a post on the Focal Point Facebook page Wednesday.

The attacks against Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy for defending traditional marriage has made unlikely allies, with the likes of former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Sarah Palin, and former Sen. Rick Santorum siding with the American Civil Liberties Union to decry discrimination against Cathy’s right to his religious beliefs.

The mayors of Boston, Chicago and D.C. have meanwhile joined a chorus of liberal personalities calling for the famously Christian restaurant to be banished, declaring belief in traditional marriage tantamount to bigotry against homosexuals: D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray in a tweet Friday dubbed the chain “hate chicken.”

The crusade against traditional marriage supporters marks a new epoch unleashed after President Obama walked back his own long-held position in favor of traditional marriage, finally declaring support for redefining the institution in May after months of speculation.

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For Hillary Clinton, abortion access trumps religious liberty

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By Dustin Siggins

WASHINGTON, D.C., May 1, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) -- For Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton, apparently abortion trumps religious liberty.

It may have gotten bipartisan support in the House of Representatives last night, but a spokesperson for the Democratic Party's leading presidential candidate says a resolution protecting religious liberty in the District of Columbia "overrule[s] the democratic process" and hurts women.

The vote, which saw three Democrats join the GOP majority and 13 Republicans stand with Democrats, was meant to protect pro-life and religious organizations in the District from the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Act (RHNDA).

RHNDA was signed by the mayor of the District of Columbia, Muriel Bowser, in January, and makes it illegal for any employer, including religious and pro-life organizations, to use a person's belief or actions about abortion in employment considerations. It also requires employers to provide abortion coverage.

The resolution now goes to the Senate, where it is expected to fail due to the Senate being on recess. Under existing federal law, the measure has 30 legislative days to be disapproved by Congress and President Obama. If this does not happen, it becomes law.

The 30-day window ends on Saturday. President Obama promised a veto of the resolution on Thursday, even though RHNDA was opposed by former District mayor Vincent Gray. According to Gray, while he "applaud[s] the goals of this legislation," the former mayor believes RHNDA could violate the U.S. Constitution's guarantee of equal treatment under the law.

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The statement by the Clinton campaign left no doubt that she stood with Obama and a majority of Democratic legislators. Spokeswoman Jennifer Palmieri told CNN, "Hillary Clinton has fought for women and families and their right to access the full range of reproductive health care without interference from politicians or employers."

"Hillary will fight to make it easier, not more difficult, for women and families to get ahead and ensure that women are not discriminated against for personal medical decisions."

The remarks come a week after Clinton took criticism for saying that "religious beliefs" critical of "reproductive rights" must "be changed."

“Yes, we've cut the maternal mortality rate in half, but far too many women are still denied critical access to reproductive health,” she told the Women in the World Summit on April 23.

“Rights have to exist in practice, not just on paper," said Clinton in her speech. "Laws have to be backed up with resources, and political will."

“Deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs, and structural biases have to be changed,” said the candidate.

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Social conservatives may be funding the destruction of marriage: corporate watchdog

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By Dustin Siggins

May 1, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) -- With over $55 million in annual revenue, the Human Rights Campaign may be America's most powerful LGBT activist group. And according to a conservative corporate watchdog, that's in part because social conservatives are funding it.

"Conservatives would be surprised to know that many of the dollars they spend every day are helping fund an agenda that seeks to destroy traditional marriage and undermine religious freedoms," said 2nd Vote National Outreach Director Robert Kuykendall. "Even when they purchase a beverage from a company like Coca-cola or Starbucks, their dollar is going to support HRC's liberal agenda to redefine marriage."

Less than 18 months old, 2nd Vote has graded hundreds of corporations on six issues -- corporate welfare, the environment, education, support for the Second Amendment, abortion, and as of two weeks ago, same-sex "marriage." Using their "scoring" system, 2nd Vote ranks corporations on their direct or indirect involvement with these hot-button public policy and cultural issues.

And according to them, some of America's favorite corporations are making the radical HRC agenda possible.

"HRC is the largest LGBT lobbying organization in the United States with reported revenues of over $55 million," Kuykendall told LifeSiteNews. "The redefinition of marriage and the undermining of religious freedom are major components of HRC’s policy agenda. To fund their policy goals, HRC has enlisted the help of many major corporations that we do business with every day to help fund. Over a third of the contributions received by HRC are listed as 'Corporate/Foundation Grants.'" 

Why should conservatives care about corporate donors to HRC? Kuykendall says the organization is both politically influential and publicly deceptive. "Last election cycle, HRC spent around a million dollars on electioneering activities and in support of liberal candidates willing to push their legislative agenda. HRC is responsible for spreading much of the misinformation regarding [Religious Freedom Restoration Act] laws and has also mischaracterized the protections provided by these laws."

"HRC organized a massive grassroots campaign in support of the legal battle to overturn state laws protecting marriage and influence the Supreme Court’s decision in Obergefell v. Hodges," said Kuykendall.

Marriage isn't the only issue on which conservatives may be at odds with HRC's corporate backers. "2nd Vote’s research into other issues such as life, the environment, and the 2nd Amendment shows that many of the companies supporting HRC have taken liberal stands on other issues as well,” he said. “For example, Apple, Citigroup, Microsoft, and Coca-Cola are Platinum Partners, the highest level of HRC’s National Corporate Partners, that have also funded the liberal Center for American Progress [CAP]."

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"Bank of America, Google, Goldman Sachs, Starbucks, PepsiCo, and Morgan Stanley are also HRC Corporate Partners that have funded CAP. Furthermore, all of these companies signed the amicus brief asking the Supreme Court to overturn state marriage laws."

In Indiana, the state's religious liberty law was modified because of corporate pressure led by Tim Cook, Apple's gay CEO. Kuykendall says conservatives should not give up, though he acknowledges that "for too long, conservatives have let liberals and groups like HRC bully companies into not just going along with their agenda, but actively funding and promoting it."

"However, conservatives have also proven their ability to mobilize and use their dollars in support of traditional values as we’ve seen through the fundraising campaigns for the pizza parlor and wedding cake makers who have been attacked by liberals for their beliefs. Conservatives need to turn the tables on the left, and groups like HRC, and motivate companies to stop funding the liberal agenda through the power of their shopping habits."

Only nine companies have ranks of "five" or "four" on 2nd Vote's ranking system, indicating a pro-marriage perspective. They are outnumbered more than 10 to 1 by organizations that support redefining marriage.

Concerned citizens can download the app on 2nd Vote's website. The full list of corporation scores can be found here.

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Fr. Mark Hodges

First graders exposed to book about transgender boy—without parental notification

Fr. Mark Hodges
By Fr. Mark Hodges

KITTERY POINT, ME, May 1, 2015, (LifeSiteNews.com) – Parents at one Maine school are upset that children as young as six were exposed to a book promoting transgender issues, in the name of "acceptance."

Parents were not only not consulted, they were never even notified of their children's exposure to transgenderism.

Horace Mitchell Primary School read the book I Am Jazz to first-grade students. The book is about a boy who identifies as a girl from the age of two, "with a boy's body and a girl's brain." He eventually finds a doctor who tells his parents, "Jazz is transgender."

Parents began to inquire about what was being taught at Horace Mitchell Primary after children came home with questions about their own sex and wondering if they, too, might be transgender.

One mother, upset that teachers would broach the subject of transgenderism with her little boy, said the primary school ignored her complaint. "I feel like my thoughts, feelings and beliefs were completely ignored...My right as a parent to allow or not allow this discussion with my child was taken from me," she told Hannity.com.

"When I spoke with the principal he was very cold about it," the mother continued. "It's amazing how thoughtless the school has been with this whole thing."

Only after Sean Hannity made national inquiries did Horace Mitchell Primary School suggest that teachers should have told parents ahead of time.

Allyn Hutton, the superintendent of the local district, said she supported reading the book but admitted that parents should have been given advance warning about the subject matter. "We have a practice of – if a topic is considered sensitive – parents should be informed. In this situation, that didn't happen," she said. "We understand that toleration is tolerating people of all opinions."

Horace Mitchell Primary School sent an e-mail, after the fact, to concerned parents, including a link to a blog post of the school's guidance counselor, explaining their motivation was "cultivating respect."

"Some may think primary school students are too young to worry about addressing issues surrounding gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) students. Not so, experts say,” the school's guidance counselor wrote. “It’s never too early to begin teaching children about respecting differences."

Homosexual activists say they support the teaching of transgenderism to first-graders, with or without parental notification. "The staff of Mitchell School is...shedding a light on [LGBTQ] issues,” said a column in Gay Star News.

The LGBT puublication goes even further, advocating homosexual propaganda be commonplace in elementary schools across the country. "LGBTQ issues should never be classified as a 'sensitive subject,' [because] there is nothing sensitive about the way we are born. Blonde hair, brown hair, gay, straight or somewhere in-between."

Brian Camenker of MassResistance commented on the infiltration of homosexual propaganda in children's schools. "We deal with parents and teachers a lot, and the idea that teachers would do this is unconscionable. It's like the people that promote this stuff are evil. It's demonic. You can't imagine adults that would do this to other people's children, and do it with such anger, and such vitrol.”

Camenker emphasized that this is “not an isolated incident with just one, rogue teacher. This happens because the whole administrative hierarchy buys into it.”

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“The new generation of educators is very, very frightening,” he said.

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