New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has an opinion on the controversy over Chick-fil-A’s stance on gay marriage. But it's not the same one spouted by the mayors of Boston, Chicago and San Francisco.
The others have strongly suggested or outright demanded that the restaurant chain — whose president, Dan Cathy, recently went on the record supporting “the biblical definition of the family unit” — stay away from their cities.
According to Bloomberg in a radio address, such a ban based on political or religious beliefs is “inappropriate” and “just not government’s job.”
A few caveats: Bloomberg thinks the trio of Chick-fil-A-bashing mayors are “good mayors”; he just disagrees “really strongly” on this particular issue. Bloomberg has never had a chicken sandwich from the chain. Bloomberg says “nobody’s a bigger supporter of same-sex marriage” than himself.
“I just don’t think it's the government’s business, period,” he said. “This is just a bad idea and it’s not going to happen in New York City.”
If the chain wants to open up more restaurants in the city, it’ll have to jump through the same permitting hoops as any other company, Bloomberg said.
Expanding might not be as easy at college campuses such as the University of Illinois, the University of Kansas and Minnesota State University. Students at those and other colleges have launched petitions on Change.org trying to keep Chick-fil-A off their campuses.
On Reddit, an anonymous user claiming to be a Chick-fil-A manager stressed that Cathy doesn’t speak for everyone in the business on the gay marriage issue.
"I know a lot of good people and good business owners who are affected by one man's views," wrote user BroadAndPattison in an Ask Me Anything feature on the social site.
Swarms of customers have threatened to boycott the company, even as conservatives such as Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum have made a point to patronize the restaurants in support.
“I can see why people wouldn't want to give a percentage of their money to a guy with different views,” the Reddit user wrote. “At the same time it hurts a lot of people. Many of whom are atheist/liberal.”