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Chick-fil-A controversy shines light on company’s charitable giving
Chick-fil-A’s charitable giving has come under scrutiny in the controversy over its president's opposition to same-sex marriage.
August 3rd, 2012
08:41 AM ET

Chick-fil-A controversy shines light on company’s charitable giving

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) – The website for the WinShape Foundation, a group started by Chick-fil-A founder Truett Cathy that’s financed almost entirely by Chick-fil-A profits, doesn’t look like a battlefield in the culture war.

The site features warm and fuzzy snapshots of winding country roads and rustic cabins along with links to a cornucopia of social welfare programs the foundation funds from foster homes to kids’ camps to college scholarships that would seem to be the furthest thing from controversial.

The foundation's “simple but profound goal” is also hard to take issue with: “Help ‘shape winners.’ ”

But gay rights groups are incensed about the chain’s financial support for what they say are anti-gay groups. WinShape-backed groups deny that accusation, while WinShape stresses its activities are almost entirely aimed at youth and families, as opposed to conservative advocacy.

Yet WinShape finds itself in the center of a storm over gay rights and religious liberties as Americans take sides in the controversy over Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy’s recently reaffirmed opposition to same-sex marriage.

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"We are very much supportive of the family the biblical definition of the family unit," Dan Cathy, Truett’s son, said in an interview last month. "We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that."

The comments sparked a tsunami of criticism from gay rights advocates and their allies, with a same-sex kiss day at Chick-fil-A restaurants nationwide scheduled for Friday. (Supporters rallied around the chain Wednesday, with an event dubbed Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day.)

But gay rights groups appear even more concerned about Chick-fil-A’s charitable giving, most of which is funneled through WinShape. The group received more than $8 million from Chick-fil-A in 2010, the most recent years for which tax records are available.

A fact sheet about Chick-fil-A recently issued by the Human Rights Campaign, the country’s largest gay rights group, aims its ire mostly at WinShape.

The fact sheet, titled “Chick-fil-A anti-gay: Company funnels millions to anti-equality groups,” says that the “popular fast food chain has donated millions to groups that demonize (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) people on a daily basis.”

The document enumerates what it calls Chick-fil-A’s “shocking donations” to evangelical groups such as the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and Focus on the Family.

Other gay rights groups have also zeroed in on WinShape’s donations.

A 2011 report from Equality Matters, an arm of the liberal group Media Matters Action Network, said the restaurant’s “charitable division has provided more than $1.1 million to organizations that deliver anti-LGBT messages and promote egregious practices like reparative therapy that seek to ‘free’ people of being gay.”

The WinShape-backed groups that gay rights advocates accuse of being anti-gay reject that label, insisting that they condemn homosexual acts, not gay people.

“Those Christian groups don’t see themselves as hateful organizations it’s a completely different perspective,” said Rusty Leonard, a financial adviser who counsels Christians on charitable giving and who knows the Cathy family. “But as conservative Christians we believe that homosexual activity is sinful.”

Most WinShape-backed groups, such as Focus on the Family and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, are mostly apolitical and are mainstream within the evangelical world.

At the same time, the left-leaning Southern Poverty Law Center has classified some WinShape-backed organizations, such as the Family Research Council, as anti-gay hate  groups.

WinShape spends the vast majority of its money on internal programs like its camps, which cost $5 million to run in 2010, and foster homes, which cost $3.2 million that year.

By comparison, the organization gave $1,000 to Family Research Council in 2010 and $1,000 to Exodus International, a group that for years promoted so-called conversion therapy for gays, though the group is now reassessing that stance.

“The WinShape Foundation and Chick-fil-A’s corporate giving is focused on supporting youth, family and educational programs,” said Steve Robinson, Chick-fil-A’s executive vice president for marketing, in a statement to CNN.com, responding to questions.

“WinShape provides camping programs for more than 13,000 girls and boys annually and 14 foster homes caring for more than 100 children,” the statement continued. "In addition, Chick-fil-A has awarded more than $30 million in Restaurant Team Member college scholarships to hourly employees.”

A public relations firm representing WinShape and Chick-fil-A declined interview requests Thursday.

WinShape’s own programs have a serious Christian tint. Its summer camp for kids “challenges campers to sharpen their character, deepen their Christian faith and relationships,” according to its website.

The foundation’s college scholarships, mostly for current and former Chick-fil-A employees, are to Berry College, a Christian liberal arts school in Georgia. The scholarships are bent on equipping “college students to impact the world for Jesus Christ by following him and living out his unique calling in their lives,” according to WinShape.

For evangelical Christians, such programs make Chick-fil-A a model corporate citizen.

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“On the conservative end of the Christian world, they are seen as being one of the most fabulous examples of Christianity lived out in appropriate ways,” Leonard said. “They support all kinds of wonderful things.”

But for now, the national focus is on outside groups that WinShape supports. The gay rights group GLAAD, for example, recently started a petition to get Dan Cathy to have dinner with a pair of gay parents and their children.

“If Cathy is going to spend millions trying to break apart loving families,” the petition says, “he should at least meet the people his money is hurting."

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Christianity • Food • Gay marriage • Gay rights

soundoff (2,697 Responses)
  1. Monique

    I am so sick of the LGBT bullying people into believing in what they believe. This whole protest against Chik-fil-a is a bunch of nonsense. This business just like any other privately owned company has every right to maintain their own beliefs. GET OVER YOURSELF!

    August 3, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • ChristardMingle.com

      Monique, you are incorrect. Freedom of speech works two ways. When bigots and fascists rise, good Americans, nay good people, have a responsibility to beat them down.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
    • Paul

      They believe in equal rights and for the state staying out of their bedrooms. What do you believe in?

      August 3, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
    • .

      WinShape Is Chick-Fil-A's Charitable Arm. The WinShape Foundation is Chick-fil-A's charitable arm, created by Chick-fil-A founder and chairman S. Truett Cathy in 1984. WinShape has received a substantial amount of funding from Chick-fil-A: in 2009 alone, WinShape received $7,814,788 from Chick-fil-A Inc. [Winshape 2009 Publicly Available IRS 990 Form via Foundation Center, accessed 10/28/11]

      WinShape Gave Over $1.7 Million To Anti-Gay Groups. In 2009 alone, WinShape donated $1,733,699 to multiple anti-gay groups:

      Marriage & Family Legacy Fund: $994,199
      Fellowship Of Christian Athletes: $480,000
      National Christian Foundation: $240,000
      Focus On The Family: $12,500
      Eagle Forum: $5,000
      Exodus International: $1,000
      Family Research Council: $1,000

      [Winshape 2009 Publicly Available IRS 990 Form via Foundation Center, accessed 10/28/11]

      August 3, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
  2. Michael

    I'll respect your right to be gay as long as you respect my right to not like you.....

    August 3, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • ChristardMingle.com

      I am quite sure that dislike will work both ways.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • Paul

      I'll respect your right to be a bitter little man as long as I am not forced to listen to you, and your bigotry doesn't erase anyone's rights. Seem fair?

      August 3, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • pervert alert

      Don't buy into the "gay" thing they are qu eers,sick, demented perverts and child molesters that have brought AIDS on human kind by molesting even animals.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
    • goodasyours

      must love the sinner - but not the sin

      August 3, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • .

      "Don't buy into the "gay" thing they are qu eers,sick, demented perverts and child molesters that have brought AIDS on human kind by molesting even animals."

      Until recently, the origins of the HIV-2 virus had remained relatively unexplored. HIV-2 is thought to come from the SIV in Sooty Mangabeys rather than chimpanzees, but the crossover to humans is believed to have happened in a similar way (i.e. through the butchering and consumption of monkey meat). It is far rarer, significantly less infectious and progresses more slowly to AIDS than HIV-1. As a result, it infects far fewer people, and is mainly confined to a few countries in West Africa.

      In May 2003, a group of Belgian researchers published a report in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science. By analysing samples of the two different subtypes of HIV-2 (A and B) taken from infected individuals and SIV samples taken from sooty mangabeys, Dr Vandamme concluded that subtype A had passed into humans around 1940 and subtype B in 1945 (plus or minus 16 years or so). Her team of researchers also discovered that the virus had originated in Guinea-Bissau and that its spread was most likely precipitated by the independence war that took place in the country between 1963 and 1974 (Guinea-Bissau is a former Portuguese colony). Her theory was backed up by the fact that the first European cases of HIV-2 were discovered among Portuguese veterans of the war, many of whom had received blood transfusions or unsterile injections following injury, or had possibly had relationships with local women.

      Given the evidence we have already looked at, it seems highly likely that Africa was indeed the continent where the transfer of HIV to humans first occurred (monkeys from Asia and South America have never been found to have SIVs that could cause HIV in humans). In May 2006, the same group of researchers who first identified the Pan troglodytes troglodytes strain of SIVcpz, announced that they had narrowed down the location of this particular strain to wild chimpanzees found in the forests of Southern Cameroon . By analysing 599 samples of chimp droppings (P. T. troglodytes are a highly endangered and thus protected species that cannot be killed or captured for testing), the researchers were able to obtain 34 specimens that reacted to a standard HIV DNA test, 12 of which gave results that were virtually indistinguishable from the reactions created by human HIV. The researchers therefore concluded that the chimpanzees found in this area were highly likely the origin of both the pandemic Group M of HIV-1 and of the far rarer Group N. The exact origins of Group O however remain unknown.

      HIV Group N principally affects people living in South-central Cameroon, so it is not difficult to see how this outbreak started. Group M, the group that has caused the worldwide pandemic, was however first identified in Kinshasa, in the Democratic Repub lic of Con go. It is not entirely clear how it transferred from Cameroon to Kinshasa, but the most likely explanation is that an infected individual travelled south down the San gha river that runs through Southern Cam eroon to the River Con go and then on to Kin shasa, where the Group M epidemic probably began.

      Just as we do not know exactly who spread the virus from Cam eroon to Kin shasa, how the virus spread from Africa to America is also not entirely clear. However, recent evidence suggests that the virus may have arrived via the Cari bbean island of H aiti.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
  3. Schmo

    You "Christians" disgust me, Jesus would be ashamed of your bigotry

    August 3, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
    • pervert alert

      Truth isn't bigotry.Qu eers the people that gave the world AIDS

      August 3, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • .

      "Truth isn't bigotry.Qu eers the people that gave the world AIDS"

      Until recently, the origins of the HIV-2 virus had remained relatively unexplored. HIV-2 is thought to come from the SIV in Sooty Mangabeys rather than chimpanzees, but the crossover to humans is believed to have happened in a similar way (i.e. through the butchering and consumption of monkey meat). It is far rarer, significantly less infectious and progresses more slowly to AIDS than HIV-1. As a result, it infects far fewer people, and is mainly confined to a few countries in West Africa.

      In May 2003, a group of Belgian researchers published a report in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science. By analysing samples of the two different subtypes of HIV-2 (A and B) taken from infected individuals and SIV samples taken from sooty mangabeys, Dr Vandamme concluded that subtype A had passed into humans around 1940 and subtype B in 1945 (plus or minus 16 years or so). Her team of researchers also discovered that the virus had originated in Guinea-Bissau and that its spread was most likely precipitated by the independence war that took place in the country between 1963 and 1974 (Guinea-Bissau is a former Portuguese colony). Her theory was backed up by the fact that the first European cases of HIV-2 were discovered among Portuguese veterans of the war, many of whom had received blood transfusions or unsterile injections following injury, or had possibly had relationships with local women.

      Given the evidence we have already looked at, it seems highly likely that Africa was indeed the continent where the transfer of HIV to humans first occurred (monkeys from Asia and South America have never been found to have SIVs that could cause HIV in humans). In May 2006, the same group of researchers who first identified the Pan troglodytes troglodytes strain of SIVcpz, announced that they had narrowed down the location of this particular strain to wild chimpanzees found in the forests of Southern Cameroon . By analysing 599 samples of chimp droppings (P. T. troglodytes are a highly endangered and thus protected species that cannot be killed or captured for testing), the researchers were able to obtain 34 specimens that reacted to a standard HIV DNA test, 12 of which gave results that were virtually indistinguishable from the reactions created by human HIV. The researchers therefore concluded that the chimpanzees found in this area were highly likely the origin of both the pandemic Group M of HIV-1 and of the far rarer Group N. The exact origins of Group O however remain unknown.

      HIV Group N principally affects people living in South-central Cameroon, so it is not difficult to see how this outbreak started. Group M, the group that has caused the worldwide pandemic, was however first identified in Kinshasa, in the Democratic Repub lic of Con go. It is not entirely clear how it transferred from Cameroon to Kinshasa, but the most likely explanation is that an infected individual travelled south down the San gha river that runs through Southern Cam eroon to the River Con go and then on to Kin shasa, where the Group M epidemic probably began.

      Just as we do not know exactly who spread the virus from Cam eroon to Kin shasa, how the virus spread from Africa to America is also not entirely clear. However, recent evidence suggests that the virus may have arrived via the Cari bbean island of H aiti.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
    • pervert alert

      belgian researchers = qu eer apologists. Qu eers the people that gave the world AIDS

      August 3, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • goodasyours

      JESUS condems ALL sin - even today - JESUS still loves the sinner though - and i thank HIM for it

      August 3, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
    • .

      "belgian researchers = qu eer apologists. Qu eers the people that gave the world AIDS"

      Emotional maturity is defined as: the ability to express one’s own feelings and convictions balanced with consideration for the thoughts and feelings of others.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • pervert alert

      one qu eer lies the next qu eer swears to it. Qu eers the people who gave the world AIDS. No one buys your small mind bull sh it but another qu eer.

      August 3, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @pervert alert

      I see you still have been unable to find anything else to do except troll on here. How good does it feel to be a pathetic waste of air?

      August 3, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • .

      "one qu eer lies the next qu eer swears to it. Qu eers the people who gave the world AIDS. No one buys your small mind bull sh it but another qu eer."

      Seek professional help for your low self esteem issues.

      August 3, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
    • pervert alert

      Top of the world ma, spreading Truth. Qu eers the folks who spread AIDS over the face of the earth.

      August 3, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • .

      "Qu eers the folks who spread AIDS over the face of the earth."

      Until recently, the origins of the HIV-2 virus had remained relatively unexplored. HIV-2 is thought to come from the SIV in Sooty Mangabeys rather than chimpanzees, but the crossover to humans is believed to have happened in a similar way (i.e. through the butchering and consumption of monkey meat). It is far rarer, significantly less infectious and progresses more slowly to AIDS than HIV-1. As a result, it infects far fewer people, and is mainly confined to a few countries in West Africa.

      In May 2003, a group of Belgian researchers published a report in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science. By analysing samples of the two different subtypes of HIV-2 (A and B) taken from infected individuals and SIV samples taken from sooty mangabeys, Dr Vandamme concluded that subtype A had passed into humans around 1940 and subtype B in 1945 (plus or minus 16 years or so). Her team of researchers also discovered that the virus had originated in Guinea-Bissau and that its spread was most likely precipitated by the independence war that took place in the country between 1963 and 1974 (Guinea-Bissau is a former Portuguese colony). Her theory was backed up by the fact that the first European cases of HIV-2 were discovered among Portuguese veterans of the war, many of whom had received blood transfusions or unsterile injections following injury, or had possibly had relationships with local women.

      Given the evidence we have already looked at, it seems highly likely that Africa was indeed the continent where the transfer of HIV to humans first occurred (monkeys from Asia and South America have never been found to have SIVs that could cause HIV in humans). In May 2006, the same group of researchers who first identified the Pan troglodytes troglodytes strain of SIVcpz, announced that they had narrowed down the location of this particular strain to wild chimpanzees found in the forests of Southern Cameroon . By analysing 599 samples of chimp droppings (P. T. troglodytes are a highly endangered and thus protected species that cannot be killed or captured for testing), the researchers were able to obtain 34 specimens that reacted to a standard HIV DNA test, 12 of which gave results that were virtually indistinguishable from the reactions created by human HIV. The researchers therefore concluded that the chimpanzees found in this area were highly likely the origin of both the pandemic Group M of HIV-1 and of the far rarer Group N. The exact origins of Group O however remain unknown.

      HIV Group N principally affects people living in South-central Cameroon, so it is not difficult to see how this outbreak started. Group M, the group that has caused the worldwide pandemic, was however first identified in Kinshasa, in the Democratic Repub lic of Con go. It is not entirely clear how it transferred from Cameroon to Kinshasa, but the most likely explanation is that an infected individual travelled south down the San gha river that runs through Southern Cam eroon to the River Con go and then on to Kin shasa, where the Group M epidemic probably began.

      Just as we do not know exactly who spread the virus from Cam eroon to Kin shasa, how the virus spread from Africa to America is also not entirely clear. However, recent evidence suggests that the virus may have arrived via the Cari bbean island of H aiti.

      August 3, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
    • i'm not a doctor but

      it seems those with the lowest self esteem would be those who cannot or will not have a normal relationship with a member of the opposite se x

      August 3, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @i'm not a doctor

      Yes, your comment made it painfully obvious that you know nothing about human psychology or self-esteem.

      August 3, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • Miranda C From NC

      I agree

      August 3, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
  4. Capt. Ron

    Chic-fil-A is a private company. As such they are free to donate THEIR money to whatever organization they choose. That's the beauty of freedom in America. If you can't handle that, maybe you should find your own island somehwere and start your own governement dictatorship where you decide what your citizens can and cannot do. Personnally I thank God that they do give to the kinds of organizations that help children grow up to be successful in life. Get that? They're HELPING pepole! Dip turds!

    August 3, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "Personnally I thank God that they do give to the kinds of organizations that help children grow up to be successful in life. Get that? "

      Gays are adopting the children that are left in orphanages and foster care by unfit straight parents. Social science has shown that the concerns often raised about children of lesbian and gay parents—concerns that are generally grounded in prejudice against and stereotypes about gay people—are unfounded. Overall, the research indicates that the children of lesbian and gay parents do not differ from the children of heterosexual parents in their development, adjustment, or overall well-being.

      So the gay community is helping children to be successful in this life too.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
  5. Alina

    Gay community is very intolerant, looks like

    August 3, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • Paul

      Intolerant of blind bigotry. Are you OK with it?

      August 3, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
    • Atheose

      "How dare you be intolerant of my bigotry!"

      August 3, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • HendersonNV

      @paul.....the term "blind bigotry" from you is perfect! You assume someone's opinion (bigoted inyour mind) is so incomprehensible that it is a "blind" (unfounded) belief. So, ironically, calling another person guilty of "blind bigotry" is the definition of a bigotry.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  6. yahoo

    NESS), published by Dr. Mark Regnerus, Associate Professor at the University of Texas, compared thousands of young adults (ages 18-39) who were raised in different types of family arrangements. The study reported that twenty-three percent of young adults who knew their mother to have had a gay relationship reported being forced to have s e x ual contact with a parent or adult caregiver, while only 2 percent of intact families with a mother and father reported such contact. For female young adults, that figure leapt to 31 percent (while only 3 percent of young women from intact
    heteros e x ual families reported this).

    A careful analysis of the research studies that led the American Psychological Association (in 2005) to assert that the children of gay and lesbian parents are in no way disadvantaged, compared to the children of heteros e x u al parents, has concluded those studies were inadequate. According to Dr. Loren Marks, Associate Professor at Louisiana State University, who authored the analysis: “The available data, which are drawn from small convenience samples, are insufficient to support a strong generalizable claim...such a statement would not be grounded in science.”

    August 3, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
  7. McCave

    Hey wait a minite... Where is CNN's story about the hate filled CFO of Vante?? Well?

    August 3, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
    • Brad

      Or the founding principles of Planned Parenthood.....

      August 3, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
  8. George

    Seriously...so what? Get a life lousy CNN reporting. Sheash... didn't find anything to report on the dude kissing event your types planned huh?

    August 3, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
  9. RunfortheHills

    My wife and I attended a WinShape "Strengthen" weekend retreat. Not only did it radically help our marriage, but it was completely non-religious, and there wasn't a single whiff of hatred for anyone mentioned by the staff at any time. It was an incredible experience that I would recommend to any married couple.

    August 3, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
  10. cannoli4me

    WinShape is not a hate organization. within their religion, they have support groups for their kids, marriage counseling, carreer oriented guidance for teens, etc. Where is the hate for Gays?? Have any of the people even researched this organization? No, they don't promote gay/lesbian lifestyle; It's not within their beliefs, but they certainly don't promote any hatred towards anyone. They are family oriented.....

    August 3, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • .

      WinShape Gave Over $1.7 Million To Anti-Gay Groups. In 2009 alone, WinShape donated $1,733,699 to multiple anti-gay groups:

      Marriage & Family Legacy Fund: $994,199
      Fellowship Of Christian Athletes: $480,000
      National Christian Foundation: $240,000
      Focus On The Family: $12,500
      Eagle Forum: $5,000
      Exodus International: $1,000
      Family Research Council: $1,000

      [Winshape 2009 Publicly Available IRS 990 Form via Foundation Center, accessed 10/28/11]

      August 3, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • .

      WinShape Is Chick-Fil-A's Charitable Arm. The WinShape Foundation is Chick-fil-A's charitable arm, created by Chick-fil-A founder and chairman S. Truett Cathy in 1984. WinShape has received a substantial amount of funding from Chick-fil-A: in 2009 alone, WinShape received $7,814,788 from Chick-fil-A Inc. [Winshape 2009 Publicly Available IRS 990 Form via Foundation Center, accessed 10/28/11]

      August 3, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
  11. Graham

    From the Winshape.com archives

    "Spiritual, as well as physical, growth is an integral part of Camp WinShape. Through contact with Christian counselors, other campers and the beauty of God's mountains and streams each boy and girl is encouraged to grow in his or her relationship with God. Morning and evening devotions are part of each camper's daily routine as well as worship services on Sunday."
    http://web.archive.org/web/19990218204533/http://www.winshape.com/spirit.htm

    August 3, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  12. Rita

    I am a Christian and I don't hate anybody. Seriously. I also have friends who are gay and lesbian and we respect each other. Do I agree with their way of life? No and they know it. Still they know that I would spend a whole night by their bedside at the hospital if they need me too. I believe they live in sin. But we all have sinned one way or another and I am nobody to disrespect anybody. But I also have the right to disagree.

    August 3, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • huh?

      what do you care if they're gay? you don't believe in it, so don't do it and mind your own business

      August 3, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
    • James PDX

      That's the entire point of Christ's message. We are all sinners so we have no right to judge the sin of others. That is God's job, and anyone usurping the will of God is likely to be in for quite a surprise when they come before God and have to explain how they completely ignored Jesus' message of humbleness and love after God sacrificed his only son for them.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
    • Rita

      I care because I love them. They are my friends. I do not preach to them, but if they ask, I tell them what I believe without being jjudgemental. I have also let them know that their way of life to me is not a reason not to be friends with them. i also believe adultery is a sin and I am friends with people who have committed adultery, the same way I am friends with gay and lesbian people. We all carry our share and it is the grace of God alone what saves us.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • Mike

      You know whats weird. The gay person wouldn't be able to be by there bedside if they weer deathly ill...

      August 3, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • John

      There's no such thing as God. Wake up and look around. Its called science and reality.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
    • Rita

      You know, Mike... That I think is very sad. Any sick or dying person should have any loved one by their bedside.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  13. HendersonNV

    So if the gay community if for diversity (and jobs), CHick-Fil-A offers diversity of views and jobs.

    So why is the gay community against CFA's diversity of view? Because they don't agree with it!

    Can't be FOR diversity but AGAINST an opposing view. The Gay community should understand being descriminated against, yet now they are descriminating against too....

    August 3, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  14. ART

    To all you religious freaks out there I once met Jesus in a dark room he gave the best head I ever got

    August 3, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • rep

      that was your mom bro

      August 3, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
    • JustAsking

      Just Wondering. You are aware that there are more religions than Christianity right?

      August 3, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
    • joesixpackjr

      Dear Art, you sound like a typical thoughtful CNN viewer. Maybe you can explain why opposing gay marriage is a form of hate. Maybe Art you would be better informed if CNN would stop quoting material in its stories from anti Christian hate groups. Maybe you would understand the problem better if CNN would explain that most Chik FilA supporters are not against gays but are concerned about government officials who threaten action against the company for the religious beliefs of its owners. Probably CNN should run a story about how illegal and un-American it is for such politicians to threaten Chik FilA for the beliefs of its owners....not much chance of that.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
  15. Michael

    Almost every charity out there has some sort of downfall that some could perceive as being anti-whatever. So they make donations to a group that "demonizes" (nice choice of words there) gays and lesbians. Maybe they should just keep their money in their pockets instead. Nooooo!! Can't do that! Then they would be considered greedy!!

    August 3, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
  16. ReligiousPoopShoot.com

    Any religion based on Jesus Christ is gonna lick balls, because Jesus does in fact lick balls.

    Cubist Turd

    August 3, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
    • ReligiousPoopShoot.com

      Hello Cubist Turd!

      Thank you for visiting ReligiousPoopShoot.com. We appreciate your comments!

      August 3, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • ReligiousPoopShoot.com

      Fuk Jesus and Mohammed, fuk them up their stupid as.ses.

      ART

      August 3, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • ReligiousPoopShoot.com

      Hello ART!

      Thank you for visiting ReligiousPoopShoot.com. We appreciate your comments!

      August 3, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
    • ReligiousPoopShoot.com

      Jesus and Mohammed are one-note jokes that only retards follow. They’re fuking clown shoes. If they were real I’d beat the sh.it out of them for being so stupid.

      Imagine

      August 3, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
    • ReligiousPoopShoot.com

      Hello Imagine!

      Thank you for visiting ReligiousPoopShoot.com. We appreciate your comments!

      August 3, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
    • ReligiousPoopShoot.com

      All you motherfukers are gonna pay! You are the ones who are the ball-lickers! We’re gonna fuk your mothers while you watch and cry like little whiney bi.tches. We’re gonna make you eat our sh.it, then sh.it out our sh.it and then eat your sh.it that’s made up of our sh.it that we made you eat!

      Jesus and Mohammed

      August 3, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
    • ReligiousPoopShoot.com

      Hello Jesus and Mohammed!

      Thank you for visiting ReligiousPoopShoot.com. We appriciate your comments!

      August 3, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • ReligiousPoopShoot.com

      Jesus and Mohammed are the worst prophets I have ever heard of. They are stupid d.ildos. A couple of losers with dumb-a.s.s parables like a third rate Moses or Bill and Ted.

      Capt. Ron

      August 3, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
    • ReligiousPoopShoot.com

      Hello Capt. Ron!

      Thank you for visiting ReligiousPoopShoot.com. We appreciate your comments!

      August 3, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
  17. Imagine

    Folks, just look at the various comments. If it is written by a liberal/gay person they preach about tolerance, yet are calling the Cathy family bigotted because they chose to follow thier faith. It's simple- the liberals will get up in flames over any issue that doesn't agree with their warped view of the world. Many liberals profess to be professional protestors. No wonder it has been shown that conservatives are much more likely to be happy with their life than liberals. How often do you see conservatives throwing rocks at police or burning cars or trashing parks? Wonder why?

    August 3, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
    • you said folks?

      who uses that word? are you andy from mayberry?

      August 3, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
    • pervert alert

      Qu eers, the folks who gave the world AIDS

      August 3, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • asdf

      " Many liberals profess to be professional protestors."

      NAME ONE.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
    • HendersonNV

      @asdf Maybe professional protesters is too hard for you to understand. Perhaps "Community organizer" is a more appropriate term......same thing....

      August 3, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • Folksie

      All sort of folks use the word "folks". We find it makes it easier for people like you to understand because there is only one syllable.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • .

      "Qu eers, the folks who gave the world AIDS"

      Until recently, the origins of the HIV-2 virus had remained relatively unexplored. HIV-2 is thought to come from the SIV in Sooty Mangabeys rather than chimpanzees, but the crossover to humans is believed to have happened in a similar way (i.e. through the butchering and consumption of monkey meat). It is far rarer, significantly less infectious and progresses more slowly to AIDS than HIV-1. As a result, it infects far fewer people, and is mainly confined to a few countries in West Africa.

      In May 2003, a group of Belgian researchers published a report in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science. By analysing samples of the two different subtypes of HIV-2 (A and B) taken from infected individuals and SIV samples taken from sooty mangabeys, Dr Vandamme concluded that subtype A had passed into humans around 1940 and subtype B in 1945 (plus or minus 16 years or so). Her team of researchers also discovered that the virus had originated in Guinea-Bissau and that its spread was most likely precipitated by the independence war that took place in the country between 1963 and 1974 (Guinea-Bissau is a former Portuguese colony). Her theory was backed up by the fact that the first European cases of HIV-2 were discovered among Portuguese veterans of the war, many of whom had received blood transfusions or unsterile injections following injury, or had possibly had relationships with local women.

      Given the evidence we have already looked at, it seems highly likely that Africa was indeed the continent where the transfer of HIV to humans first occurred (monkeys from Asia and South America have never been found to have SIVs that could cause HIV in humans). In May 2006, the same group of researchers who first identified the Pan troglodytes troglodytes strain of SIVcpz, announced that they had narrowed down the location of this particular strain to wild chimpanzees found in the forests of Southern Cameroon . By analysing 599 samples of chimp droppings (P. T. troglodytes are a highly endangered and thus protected species that cannot be killed or captured for testing), the researchers were able to obtain 34 specimens that reacted to a standard HIV DNA test, 12 of which gave results that were virtually indistinguishable from the reactions created by human HIV. The researchers therefore concluded that the chimpanzees found in this area were highly likely the origin of both the pandemic Group M of HIV-1 and of the far rarer Group N. The exact origins of Group O however remain unknown.

      HIV Group N principally affects people living in South-central Cameroon, so it is not difficult to see how this outbreak started. Group M, the group that has caused the worldwide pandemic, was however first identified in Kinshasa, in the Democratic Repub lic of Con go. It is not entirely clear how it transferred from Cameroon to Kinshasa, but the most likely explanation is that an infected individual travelled south down the San gha river that runs through Southern Cam eroon to the River Con go and then on to Kin shasa, where the Group M epidemic probably began.

      Just as we do not know exactly who spread the virus from Cam eroon to Kin shasa, how the virus spread from Africa to America is also not entirely clear. However, recent evidence suggests that the virus may have arrived via the Cari bbean island of H aiti.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
  18. electroguy

    The GLBT community and Libernazi's are all for freedom of choice as long as your choice doesnt matter..

    August 3, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
    • Shawn

      So true.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • John

      What are you talking about? Go back to the 50's. Do you hate black people too?

      August 3, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
  19. Super double real, extra not fake god - ie the real god

    ARG! YOU'VE ALL GOT IT WRONG, I THOUGHT I SAID LOVE THY NEIGHBOR AND DO UNTO OTHERS AS YOU WOULD HAVE THEM DO UNTO YOU??? GUESS THAT GOT LOST IN TRANSLATION

    August 3, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
  20. Jane

    Discrimination: the founding principal of the nation, and promoted by ignorant "Believers" for centuries. Does hating another person, for whatever the arbitrary reason, make you feel closer to God? What sin-free life are you living that gives you the position to be condemning the lives of others? .

    August 3, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • HendersonNV

      You are refering to how the gay community is condeming the CFA owners, right. Re-read your post out loud and you will hear the irony in your bias..

      August 3, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • goodasyours

      miss jane - real discrimination is promoted by ignorant people who don't take time to read and think on GOD'S word - that's why a person needs to read it - not just take someones "word" about the bible - no one lives a sin free life – FACT - GOD hates sin - FACT - real christians are also to hate sin - NOT the sinner!!! - you have been reading to many news stories - read the BIBLE instead

      August 3, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • John

      hey goodasyours. God is fake as can be. Get over it. Youll realize your wrong someday. The bible was written by people a few thousand years ago. Lets jsut blindly believe it, and call it faith. GOOD IDEA! Idiot.

      August 3, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.