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Conservatives are now calling for a boycott of Chick-fil-A for going “woke”

Chick-fil-A sandwiches
Photo: Shutterstock

Chick-fil-A – the chicken sandwich fast food chain that for over a decade has been a sacred safe space for many on the right due to its CEO’s hatred of LGBTQ+ people – is facing criticism for having “gone woke.” Some are even calling for a boycott.

At issue is the company’s new vice president of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, Erick McReynolds.

“This is bad. Very bad. I don’t want to have to boycott. Are we going to have to boycott?” said conservative strategist Joey Mannarino. “It’s only a matter of time until they start putting tr***y semen in the frosted lemonade at this point.”

He then posted a poll asking if people should boycott Chick-fil-A. The results are currently split about evenly. The poll is not scientific and only gauges the opinions of people who read Mannarino’s tweets.

Mannarino linked to a page on Chick-fil-A’s website about their commitment to diversity.

“Chick-fil-A’s Corporate Purpose is ‘To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us. To have a positive influence on all who come into contact with Chick-fil-A,'” the website states. “One of our core values at Chick-fil-A, Inc. is that we are better together. When we combine our unique backgrounds and experiences with a culture of belonging, we can discover new ways to strengthen the quality of care we deliver: to customers, to the communities we serve and to the world.”

The sorts of things a DEI executive could do to advance diversity could include hiring more people from diverse backgrounds, making sure that the company isn’t discriminating against minority workers, and creating an environment where people of diverse backgrounds feel welcome.

Currently, it’s not known what exactly McReynolds will be doing. He said that he is “committed to ensuring mutual respect, understanding and dignity everywhere we do business” in a statement posted to the Chick-fil-A website.

“These tenets are good business practice and crucial to fulfilling our Corporate Purpose.”

Chick-fil-A has become a cause célèbre for Christian conservatives. Ever since it faced criticism in 2012 for its donations to extreme anti-LGBTQ+ organizations, Evangelicals have flocked to the restaurant to show their support for its conservative values. So any criticism of the fast food chain can be perceived as an attack on conservative Christians themselves.

After Chick-fil-A was first caught donating to extremist groups that promote, among other things, conversion therapy, then-company president Dan Cathy said that the company was “guilty as charged” because they want to promote “the biblical definition of the family unit.”

Chick-fil-A later walked back that support and said that they would stop funding organizations with “political agendas.”

Years later, they were again caught donating to groups that oppose LGBTQ+ equality, and the chain again promised to stop donating to them. But a report in 2021 showed that Cathy – one of the heirs to the Chick-fil-A fortune with an estimated net worth of $8 billion – was giving money to organizations working to pass anti-trans laws in dozens of states and blocking the Equality Act in Congress.

Conservative support for Chick-fil-A went so deep that Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) signed what was informally called the “Save Chick-fil-A” bill in 2019, which was meant to protect businesses from “adverse actions” because of the businesses’ “religious beliefs” or “moral convictions.” Abbott surrounded himself with Chick-fil-A food while signing the law.

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