Debate continues on Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day

From+left+to+right%2C+Ashley+Edwards%2C+an+openly+gay+student+at+Bowling+Green+Technical+College%2C+and+Claudia+Haens%2C+a+straight+retired+teacher+from+Henry+F.+Moss+Middle+School+in+Bowling+Green%2C+stand+in+front+of+Chick-Fil-A+on+Campbell+Lane+in+support+of+gay+marriage+on+Chick-Fil-A+Appreciation+Day+on+Wednesday.+The+inside+of+the+restaurant+was+packed+with+supporters+who+came+for+a+meal.%22I%27m+for+gay+marriage%2C%22+Edwards+said.Haens+said+that+Chick-Fil-A+has+been+%22really+nice%2C%22+to+her+being+out+front.Both+Edwards+and+Haens+said+that+they+won%27t+be+eating+at+the+franchise+anymore.%0A

From left to right, Ashley Edwards, an openly gay student at Bowling Green Technical College, and Claudia Haens, a straight retired teacher from Henry F. Moss Middle School in Bowling Green, stand in front of Chick-Fil-A on Campbell Lane in support of gay marriage on Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day on Wednesday. The inside of the restaurant was packed with supporters who came for a meal.”I’m for gay marriage,” Edwards said.Haens said that Chick-Fil-A has been “really nice,” to her being out front.Both Edwards and Haens said that they won’t be eating at the franchise anymore.

Cows holding signs aren’t the only ones telling patrons to “Eat More Chicken.”

Mike Huckabee, former presidential candidate turned Fox News host, joined in support of the restaurant chain that has recently spoke against gay marriage by declaring Aug. 1 “National Chick-Fil-A Appreciation day” via a Facebook post.

The event page Huckabee created had more than 600,000 people pledging support as of Wednesday morning.

Huckabee wrote that the goal of the day is simple: “Let’s affirm a business that operates on Christian principles and whose executives are willing to take a stand for the Godly values we espouse by simply showing up and eating at Chick Fil-A on Wednesday, August 1.”

But even as so many people are pledging to support the chain, a group of WKU students are pledging a different cause.

Kevin Worthy, a Corinth senior, created a petition on the website Change.org to boycott and remove Chick-Fil-A from WKU’s campus. The petition currently has 61 signatures.

“I don’t like what it supports,” Worthy said. “If you look at WKU’s creed it says ‘celebrate and embrace diversity.’ I feel like Chick-Fil-A does the opposite of that.”

The University of Louisville, which also houses a Chick-fil-A on campus, chose to put the matter to rest with a statement from university officials.

President John Ramsey and Shirley Willihnganz, vice president and provost, issued a statement that reads in part “UofL is an institution that treasures diversity. Our strength is in the experiences and values we share with those who may be different from us. We also are a university that steadfastly supports free speech – even if that speech goes against our values.”

The statement concludes by stating the university will not be taking action against Chick-fil-A.

WKU has not released a statement about Chick-fil-A and President Gary Ransdell said the university probably won’t take a stance.

Ransdell said Chick-Fil-A is a contracted service for WKU. He compared the chain’s business practices to other contracted companies that have practices people have opposing opinions on, like overseas labor.

If enough people decided not to support the chain, Ransdell said there is an option to replace it.

“We’re going to invest in what’s best for the university,” Ransdell said.

Worthy said that he understands where the university is coming from in their stance.

“I understand that it is profitable for the university,” Worthy said. “I just think we should be careful where we make our profits from.”