Chick-fil-A is under attack once more by the “Gay mafia,” this time over its sponsorship of the upcoming Pittsburgh Marathon. The Three Rivers Marathon announced in late September that the family-friendly and Christian-owned fast-food franchise would serve as the main partner for a one-mile kids’ marathon slated for the May 4 Three Rivers Marathon weekend, and would also help sponsor the Kids of Steel initiative, a nutrition program for children throughout southwestern Pennsylvania.
“We’re grateful to Chick-fil-A for their support and are thrilled they share our commitment to inspiring the next generation of runners throughout the Pittsburgh region,” said Troy Schooley, a Three Rivers Marathon vice president. “More than 6,500 students from over 130 schools in the tri-state area have participated in the Pittsburgh Kids Marathon in 2018, and we aim to grow that number in 2019 and reach even more local students with our new Kids Marathon title partner.”
But given Chick-fil-A’s un-apologetic commitment to Christian and traditional family values, it’s not surprising that LGBT activists would demand that the company be deprived of the opportunity to serve the Pittsburgh community.
Sue Kerr, a Pittsburgh area homosexual activist and moderator of the Pittsburgh Lesbian Correspondents blog, called Chick-fil-A’s involvement a “divisive, hurtful choice” on the part of the Three Rivers Marathon. “Chick-fil-A is actively and aggressively anti-LGBTQ,” Kerr wrote in her blog post, insisting that marathon officials “can’t create an event that is safe and affirming of us, especially our young people, if you take money from a company that works to eradicate our identities and our peace of mind. Children cannot run under the banner of a company that believes their sexual orientation and gender identity is something that can be cured or healed.”
She added: “And then, of course, we have the warped views of human sexuality … which play a significant role in perpetuating rape culture. We don’t need our marathon to be a breeding ground for young people to absorb these horrible lessons about their own sexuality and their respect for others.”
Kerr has initiated a petition drive demanding that the Three Rivers Marathon scrap its partnership with Chick-fil-A. “The Pittsburgh Marathon is an important community asset that brings people from all over the world to our region,” the petition reads. “And it has historically been supportive of the LGBTQ community. The Pittsburgh Marathon has the discretion to NOT partner with such businesses, especially on projects working with Pittsburgh’s youth. We must reject attempts to normalize homophobia and transphobia for our children.”
Thus far nearly 500 individuals have signed on to the petition.
In response, marathon officials issued a statement explaining that their intent is “to be inclusive of any and all members of the Pittsburgh community,” and “to be accepting of any individual or family who wants to participate in our events.” They added that their goal in partnering with Chick-fil-A and all other companies involved “is to further expand all of our events and programming.... This partnership with Chick-fil-A will help us ensure even more children in southwestern Pennsylvania can learn and share in our love of running.”
Chic-fil-A, which is closed on Sundays to allow employees to attend church and spend time with their families, has long been known across Americas for giving back to the communities where its restaurants are located. Additionally, Fox News noted that “earlier this year, the American Customer Satisfaction Index’s Restaurant Report found Chick-fil-A to be the No. 1 fast food chain. It came out on top in 2017 as well.”
Photo: AP Images