First of all, my congratulations
on the empire you have created.  Getting
to the top of the poultry fast-food business is not an easy task.  From one poultry connoisseur to another, I
can appreciate the sacrifices and hard work it has demanded of you and your
family as you have worked you way up to the top of the fast food chicken
highway.  I find it sometimes challenging
to balance the life of 5 hens in my fabulous backyard, I can’t imagine what
it’s like in yours.  Similarly, I must
admit that S. Truett Cathy’s resume is impressive.  You definitely don’t get to be the 400th
richest American or 799th richest person in the world by sitting on
your behind and it always means making some tough decisions.
I also want to offer my
condolences on your recent loss, Don Perry, the VP of Public Relations.  It couldn’t have come at a more challenging
time for Chick-Fil-A. I would like to offer my thoughts and prayers to Mr. Perry’s
family and to the Chick-Fil-A family at large. 
I’m sure it was a major loss.
Pleasantries and condolences
aside.  I don’t normally get political,
but I do believe there is some learning that needs to happen around the whole
Chick-Fil-A fiasco going on.  I’m
speaking of the recent PR storm where you openly admit that you and, by proxy,
your organization is anti gay-marriage.  I
am a bit disappointed by you and your father’s position on this matter.  I do believe in everyone’s right to their own
opinions.  To that end, there is no
argument.  What I whole-heartedly take
issue with is a morality lesson my mother taught me as a child, “If you don’t
have anything nice to say about anyone else, don’t say anything at all.”  This moral question becomes especially
important when you are in a position of perceived power or influence.  I believe for individuals with “influence” or
perceived power, you have a moral and human obligation to be a bit more
cautious with your words in the public arena. 
 Don’t you agree?
Personally, I would think using
your “influence” for good things would ALWAYS be the way to go.  Please remember that words are harmful.  As Mr. S Truett Cathy has penned multiple
books of the self-help nature, something else we have in common, you can
understand that words of inequality and prejudice perpetuate more feelings of
inadequacies, insecurities, and could incidentally cause young Christians, of
like-mind to you and your core religious values, to potentially harm themselves
or others.  I sincerely hope you have
thought through all repercussions beyond just your financials. 
It’s not your feelings or
opinions alone that make me disappointed and have rifled up so many feathers
(pun intended), it’s the consistent promotion of intolerance, hatred, and
bigotry that has everyone up in arm from your disappointing public words to
your choice in organization donations.  What you don’t seem to realize is that this is
a human rights equality issue, having nothing to do with religion.  In other words, if you removed your religious
feelings about the subject, would you still maintain your position on
inequality?  Surely between your 57 years
and your father’s 90 years of life, you both have learned a great deal about
equality and human rights’ issues.  Your
father fought in the US army during World War II, survived civil/human rights
movements in the 60s and 70s, received various honorary doctorates, founded the
WinShape Foundation, and fostered over 200 children over the past 30 years,
somewhere along the way you both would have learned that hatred and war beget
additional hatred and war. 
On the flip side, peace,
acceptance, and harmony always take your farther and higher.  These concepts are the cornerstone ways in
which intelligent beings prevail and succeed in the future.  Do you believe that the Curiosity rover is
the result of consistent intolerance and hate? 
No, it is the dedication to a higher purpose (God, the Universe, what
have you) and the constant commitment to peace and understanding that allowed
those intelligent beings to spend over 7 years of their life to searching for
existence on other planets.
I’m always amazed when
individuals call themselves Christians while promoting ideas of inequality,
discrimination, and racism.  I thought
Christianity was the constant promotion of God’s and Jesus’ unconditional love
for humanity.  Am I wrong?  Instead of promoting the negative by giving
large donations to similar negative groups, as a Christian, aren’t you supposed
to tithe toward those organizations that are consistent with Christian core
values?  I am not a Christian.  However, I have had many discussions with
good Christian friends.  Also, given the
recent terrible attacks in Wisconsin and Colorado, why not take advantage of a
sad situation and focus your resources to continue promoting goodness and
charity, instead of giving additional monies to groups that promote hatred,
bigotry, and homophobia or even put more money into your homeless foundations.  I’m certain they could always use the money.  I simply don’t understand how you have helped
so many individuals with your wonderful foundations and yet produce just as
much prejudice and negativity in the world. 
See, I am a believer in karma and what goes around comes around.  That said, I do wish you the best in all of
your endeavors.
Let’s make a deal.  I won’t insult and disrespect you and your
family if you don’t insult and disrespect mine, especially within the public
arena.  I have a hard time understanding
why there is so much hatred, bigotry, and downright supremacy in this world,
especially toward gays, not to mention other religions or sub-factions.  I believe it’s because people fear that which
they don’t know or understand.  I can
guarantee if either one of you had just one close gay friend or family member,
your whole outlook might be different.
Based upon your comments in late
July, I, personally, will not be stepping foot in any Chick-Fil-A’s, but I
never have stepped foot in a Chick-Fil-A to begin with, so I don’t even know
what I am or am not missing.   Kidding aside, while I won’t be eating at your
establishment, nor any of my gay-friends and family, unfortunately, you are
losing out on a great deal of revenue stream. 
And, if you think that gay people make up for only 10% of the US
Population, rest assured, you are wrong. 
We are everywhere.  We come from
all walks of life.  We are Jews, we are
Christians, and we are here to stay!  We
could even be your neighbors.  Out of
those 200 children your father has fostered over the years, there is a good
chance that about 20-25 of those individuals were gay.  I hope you wouldn’t alienate or turn you back
on them (your extended “family”) as you have the millions of gay and gay
friendly individuals in the United States. 
One more fact, there are more people that support marriage equality for
all in this country than don’t.  Thus,
your sentiments are already in the minority. 
Marriage equality is coming and
will happen whether you agree or not. 
It’s just a matter of time.  That
said, I have a challenge for both you and your father.  Since I believe with all my heart if you had
a gay brother or close family member that were to be gay, you would want them
to be treated as equals, right?  Therefore,
I offer my close friendship.  In other
words, I will be your gay BFF, at no charge, just to help you understand that
gay people are the exact same as everyone else. 
We are not scary.  I think you’ll
find we are actually more fun and more intelligent than your current
friends.  I freely offer you my services
as a gay bestie.  What do you think?  Give me 6 months and I’m sure I can help you
understand more than just the fabulous gay life, as I like to call it.   Additionally, it might create a great PR
boost for you too.  Please feel free to
contact me at the below number.
Lastly, I just want to reiterate
two things: 
1) People
with “influence” or perceived power need to be cautious with their public
2) Please
remember that words of inequality and prejudice perpetuate feelings of
inadequacies, insecurities, and could incidentally cause young Christians, of
like-mind to you and your core religious values, to potentially harm themselves
or others. 
To your continued success,
Seth E Santoro
Gay Chicken Enthusiast
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