Much of the information in this article was made available due to research and investigation by political blog ThinkProgress.org.
Nearly five years ago, Chick-fil-A CEO and Chairman Dan Cathy admitted that the chain was “guilty as charged” of opposing same-sex marriage, pushing the restaurant to vow to keep out of the debate and focus on chicken.
“The Chick-fil-A culture and 66-year tradition in our locally owned and operated restaurants is to treat every person with honor, dignity and respect — regardless of their beliefs, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender,” a statement released by the company at the time read. “We are a restaurant company focused on food, service and hospitality; our intent is not to engage in political or social debates.
However, that promise of inclusivity has remained superficial, according to Chick-fil-A’s most recent IRS filings, which show that the company donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to anti-LGBT organizations in 2015.
The restaurant chain gave nearly one-sixth of its grants (over $1 million) to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. The organization has a “sexual purity” compliance that states “The Bible is clear in teaching on homosexual 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 compliance encourages individuals to “trust in Jesus and turn away from any impure lifestyle.”
The restaurant has also donated more that $200,000 to the Paul Anderson Youth Home, a “transformative organization” in Georgia that operates a residential home for troubled youth.
Their teachings purport 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 Home believes that homosexuality is the result of child abuse and promotes conversion therapy for LGBT youth, a practice deemed harmful by the American Psychological Association and banned throughout many states as well as a number of cities in South Florida.
Though Chick-fil-A claimed to have turned away from anti-LGBT politics five years ago, their continued support of a number of anti-LGBT organizations suggests the opposite. The Human Rights Campaign’s most recent scorecard gave Chick-fil-A a zero on LGBT-inclusive policies.
Though the chain promised to keep away from anti-LGBT issues, the $1.4 million donated to anti-LGBT organizations in 2015 alone shows the restaurant has yet to practice what they preached.