Taking a stand for traditional marriage can be bad for business. Chick-fil-A found this out. Liberal mayors don’t want these restaurants in their city. And they were nearly shut out of the Denver airport, until common sense began to prevail.
Chick-fil-A left the Denver airport years ago and then applied to return. It was one of the most popular food concessions. But they weren’t popular with a few members of the city council. One councilman argued: “we can do better than this brand in Denver at our airport, in my estimation.” A councilwoman feared that the chain would use its profits “to fund and fuel discrimination.” They were willing to send Chick-fil-A packing even though one study predicted the restaurant would generate more than $4 million in sales and put over $600,000 a year in the city coffers.
Approval for Chick-fil-A should have been a simple process, but a few city council members resisted because they disagreed with the company’s “business practices.” What might those be? Back in 2012 its now-CEO Dan Cathy supported traditional marriage and opposed same-sex marriage. Can you imagine if a conservative member of the city council (assuming there is one) opposed Starbucks because its founder supports same-sex marriage? Imagine the intolerance.
Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed. But it wasn’t because the city council members backed down. Denver attorneys in a closed-door meeting warned that barring a business on the basis of political prejudice would result in a First Amendment lawsuit they would most likely lose. Also, there was the issue of race. Chick-fil-A’s local partner is a minority-owned business called Delarosa Restaurant.
Chick-fil-A might have won this small battle, but they are still facing the intolerant Left in cities like Boston, Chicago, and San Francisco. Political leaders want to bar their restaurants in these cities. Fortunately, Chick-fil-A was able to prevail in Denver.