Chick-fil-A Still Funneling Profits to Anti-LGBTQ Organizations
Following national outrage over their funding of several anti-LGBTQ organizations a few years ago, Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy announced his company’s charitable arm – the Winshape Foundation – would no longer fund anti-LGBTQ organizations or causes. Claiming Chick-fil-A would “treat every person with honor, dignity and respect-regardless of their beliefs, race, creed, sexual orientation and gender,” they considered the matter settled and the nation moved on.
The problem with Cathy’s statement is that Chick-fil-A didn’t actually stop donating large sums of money to anti-LGBTQ organizations and causes – and their most recently released financial documents are proof.
But has anything changed? It sure doesn’t look that way. While the company’s non-profit arms scaled back support for some of the groups that actively push an anti-gay agenda, the Chick-fil-A Foundation’s most recent IRS filings show it gave hundreds of thousands of dollars to anti-LGBTQ organizations in 2015. Though its website’s FAQ claims the foundation “is focused on helping every child become all they were created to be,” its donations went to groups that do not believe this includes LGBTQ youth.
Looking at specific examples, they noted:
For example, the Chick-fil-A Foundation gave more than $1 million in 2015 (nearly one-sixth of its total grants) to the the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. The religious organization, which seeks to utilize athletes and coaches to spread Christian teachings, imparts a strongly anti-LGBTQ message. Staff and volunteers with the organization have been required to adhere to a strict “sexual purity” policy, prohibiting any “homosexual acts,” even for married couples. The group takes the view that, “The Bible is clear in teaching on sexual sin including sex outside of marriage and homosexual acts. Neither heterosexual sex outside of marriage nor any homosexual act constitute an alternative lifestyle acceptable to God.”
The foundation also gave more than $200,000 to the Paul Anderson Youth Home, a Georgia-based “transformative organization” that operates a “Christian residential home for troubled youth.” Focusing on boys, theirteachings include the idea that the “sexual, physical, and mental abuse of children, mostly in the alleged ‘safety’ of their own homes has produced all kinds of evil throughout the culture to include the explosion of homosexuality in the last century.” The myth that people are LGBTQ due to abuse is a claim frequently made by anti-LGBTQ organizations to promoteharmful “ex-gay” therapy.
Additionally, the Chick-fil-A Foundation gave at least $130,000 to the Salvation Army. The religious organization has a long history of anti-LGBTQhousing discrimination, opposition to same-sex marriage equality, and supporting exemptions from non-discrimination ordinances. One page on its website, entitled “The Salvation Army and the LGBT Community,” boasts that the group adheres “to all relevant employment laws, providing domestic partner benefits accordingly.’ Given that only a minority of states explicitly bar anti-LGBTQ discrimination, that’s a low bar.
Having donated at least $1.4 million to anti-LGBTQ causes means Cathy was anything but sincere when he claimed his company would “treat every person with honor, dignity and respect-regardless of their beliefs, race, creed, sexual orientation and gender.”
This is no surprise seeing as his company’s non-profit charitable arm previously donated money (on a regular basis) to an organization that lobbied Congress in 2010 against passing a resolution condemning Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” bill. They essentially argued the language in the resolution was too friendly toward LGBTQ people.
That organization – the Family Research Council (FRC) – disagreed with “the suggestion that gay and lesbian acts are universal human rights.” FRC lobbied to remove wording “human rights” from the Congressional condemnation and (knowing that would not happen) generally opposed the congressional resolution condemning Uganda’s effort to legalize the murder of LGBTQ people.
As late as 2012, Chick-fil-A’s charitable arm spent $5 Million on anti-LGBTQ advocacy despite claiming it was halting all donations that could be perceived as anti-LGBTQ.
This trend continued through 2014.
ThinkProgress noted last year on that filing:
In 2014, the Chick-fil-A Foundation — the company’s charitable arm — distributed about $4.3 million to non-profit organizations. Of this, nearly a quarter ($1,017,610) went to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA). The tax-exempt Fellowship says its mission is to “present to coaches and athletes, and all whom they influence, the challenge and adventure of receiving Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, serving Him in their relationships and in the fellowship of the church.”
The group imparts a strongly anti-LGBT message on its athletes and leaders. Staff and volunteers with the organization have been required to adhere to a strict “sexual purity” policy, prohibiting any “homosexual acts” even for married couples. It reads:
God desires His children to lead pure lives of holiness. The Bible is clear in teaching on sexual sin including sex outside of marriage and homosexual acts. Neither heterosexual sex outside of marriage nor any homosexual act constitute an alternative lifestyle acceptable to God. While upholding God’s standard of holiness, FCA strongly affirms God’s love and redemptive power in the individual who chooses to follow Him. FCA’s desire is to encourage individuals to trust in Jesus and turn away from any impure lifestyle.
A 2010 story, no longer posted on the organization’s site, claimed that at the FCA’s 2010 National College Conference, “God freed some people from homosexuality, sexual sins, addictions and even ushered newcomers into His Kingdom.”
In short, money spent at Chick-fil-A ultimately supports both a national and global agenda aimed at thwarting LGBTQ basic civil rights.