A St. Louis area business group has
canceled a planned appearance by Dan Cathy, president of Chick-Fil-A,
over the restaurant chain's recent support for an anti-gay marriage
The Clayton Chamber of Commerce
announced Thursday their decision to rescind their invitation.
“We are a pro-diversity culture here
and certainly don't want to offend anyone,” Ellen Gale, the head of
the chamber, told
STLToday.com, the website of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
“We didn't know anything about this when he was booked.”
Gale was referring to the chicken
restaurant's sponsorship of a marriage seminar closely associated
with the anti-gay marriage group Pennsylvania Family Institute.
a two-minute-twenty-seven-second video message released in January,
Cathy denied that the company's donation was an endorsement of its
“Let me be clear, Chick-Fil-A serves
all people and values all people,” Cathy said.
“Providing food to these events, or
any event, is not an endorsement of the mission, political stance or
motives of this or any other organization. Any suggestion otherwise
is just inaccurate,” he added.
Cathy, however, altered course three
weeks later after the New York Times wrote about the fallout
from the incident.
“Chick-Fil-A has a long history of
trying to encourage and strengthen marriages and families, both
within our Chick-Fil-A system and with our customers,” Cathy said
in a statement.
“Chick-Fil-A's Corporate Purpose is
'To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted
to us, and to have a positive influence on all who come in contact
with Chick-Fil-A.' As a result, we will not champion any political
agendas on marriage and family. This decision has been made, and we
understand the importance of it.”
But Cathy added that the company would
“continue to offer resources to strengthen marriages and families.”
“To do anything different would be
inconsistent with our purpose and belief in Biblical principles,”