retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Los Angeles Times reports this morning that an analysis of 2001 tax documents filed by Chick-fil-A show that the company made no donations to groups that oppose gay marriage - a reality that may come as a surprise to some considering the company's public position on the subject. That position, as stated by the company's president, Dan Cathy, had enraged gay marriage supporters who called for a boycott of the fast feeder; conversely, anti-gay marriage forces had coalesced around a grass roots campaign calling for people to eat more Chick-fil-A, not less.

The Times writes that "according to gay rights group Campus Pride, the 2011 IRS 990 filings for Chick-fil-A's charity arm WinShape Foundation show no sign of gifts to organizations such as Family Research Council or Exodus International, which advocate against same-sex unions and other privileges for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

"The documents, filed Nov. 15, instead exhibit nearly $6 million in funding to beneficiaries supporting youth, education, local communities and what Campus Pride called 'marriage enrichment'."

Chick-fil-A says that its 2011 corporate charitable donations reflect its real priority, which is "not to support political or social agendas."

The Times also notes that "on Monday, LGBT advocacy group Human Rights Campaign said major companies including Marriott International Inc., Aetna Inc., Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and eBay Inc. were backing a repeal of the federal Defense of Marriage Act. It said the businesses formed a coalition to oppose the law, which denies federal benefits to same-sex couples."
KC's View:
One of the nice things about this story is that it talks about how one of the top people from the Campus Pride organization actually has developed a personal relationship with Dan Cathy, even being invited to attend with Cathy the college football bowl game sponsored by the retailer.

Apparently, good and decent people, if they try hard enough, can find ways to connect even if they disagree on some issues. It gives one hope.