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A scorching letter against Chick-fil-A by the mayor of Boston, Mass., went viral today on Facebook, as the city’s elected leader is making no secret about humiliating the restaurant chain for its opposition to same-sex marriage.
In his message addressed to Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy, Democrat Mayor Thomas Menino said: “I was angry to learn on the heels of your prejudiced statements about your search for a site to locate in Boston. There is no place for discrimination on Boston’s Freedom Trail and no place for your company alongside it.”
The letter was posted on the Boston’s official community page on Facebook this afternoon, and received more than 74,000 likes, close to 26,000 shares and some 6,000 comments just before 7 p.m.
“We are indeed full of pride for our support of same sex marriage and our work to expand freedom to all people,” Menino wrote. “We are proud that our state and our city have led the way for the country on equal marriage rights.”
“When Massachusetts became the first state in the country to recognize equal marriage rights, I personally stood on City Hall Plaza to greet same sex couples coming her to be married,” he added. “It would be an insult to them and to our city’s long history of expanding freedom to have a Chick-fil-A across the street from that spot.”
It was last Thursday when Menino first mentioned his opposition to Chick-fil-A after the Boston Herald reported the restaurant was scoping out potential locations in Boston. His letter was dated Friday, July 20, but went viral Wednesday afternoon on the social networking site.
The dispute developed after Dan Cathy, whose father, Truett Cathy, founded the $4 billion-plus a year business, gave an interview to the Baptist Press.
“We are very much supportive of the family – the biblical definition of the family unit. We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that,” Cathy said.
In a radio interview, Cathy also noted, “I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage. ‘I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think we can try to define what marriage is all about.”
As WND reported yesterday, hundreds of thousands of people across America are pledging to support Chick-fil-A restaurants in the face of an attack on the company because of the CEO’s affirmation that both he and the company support biblically ordained marriage.
The company’s refusal to put its resources into advocating same-sex marriage has drawn the wrath of many progressives, including the Jim Henson Co., which created the Muppets.
A Facebook campaign has been launched by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee seeking to build support for the chicken-sandwich chain famous for closing its stores on Sundays so employees can attend church if they choose.
Huckabee, a 2008 Republican presidential candidate, invited Americans to join him Wednesday, Aug. 1, for a “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day.” Some supporters are advocating showing support every Wednesday.
Reaction to the mayor’s letter among Facebook users runs the gamut on all sides of the issue.
Michael Yockey noted, “Someday, I would like someone explain the connection between fast food and same sex marriage.”
Shirley Stanton of Orlando, Fla., said: “Even though I don’t live in Boston, I am proud of their mayor. Thomas Menino is truly someone Boston should be proud of and praise.”
Jon Untiedt noted: “Sounds like Boston is discriminating against Chick-fil-A’s CEO’s First Amendment rights.”
And Keith S. Brooks, said: “A mayor urging a company to keep its taxes and jobs out of his city is absurd. Keep the personal preferences of ones private life, private. Let the market dictate what people will or wont participate in.But suggesting to a business that the personal feelings of their CEO should be the measuring stick of whether or not they are allowed to conduct business in your city is, at the very least, a seriously slippery slope. I’m from Boston. Yes, they are prideful. They are also knuckle headed. What happens if a strong Christian becomes the mayor of Boston and he decides he doesn’t want Home Depot in the city of Boston anymore because they support gay marriage? Would it be OK for that mayor to suggest the company take its millions of dollars in taxes and hundreds of jobs and kick rocks? Dangerous stuff here. And I have many gay friends, but this kind of grandstanding by a mayor who is looking for sympathy votes for his next election is cowardly and has NO place in an intelligent society.”