A growing chorus of politicians has joined a nearly two-week uproar and counter-uproar over the marriage views of Chick-fil-A’s president.
At least four Democratic officials in three major northern U.S. cities spoke against the views of Dan Cathy, who recently said his company backs traditional marriage, as opposed to same-sex marriage. Some of those politicos essentially told the Atlanta-based restaurant chain not to try to expand in their cities.
Two former GOP presidential candidates, meanwhile, have encouraged people to show their support for Chick-fil-A by buying food there this coming Wednesday, which one of them has dubbed “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day.”
The controversy took flight in mid-July after Cathy gave an interview to the Biblical Recorder, on online journal for Baptists in North Carolina. In the July 2 story - picked up by the Baptist Press on July 16 - Cathy affirmed that his company backs the traditional family unit.
“We are very much supportive of the family – the biblical definition of the family unit,” Cathy said. “We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that.”
“We know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles,” he added.
The fast-food chicken restaurant chain has long been known to espouse Christian values, and does not operate on Sundays so that employees can be free to attend church if they choose.
Proponents of same-sex marriage spread Cathy’s comments, eventually creating a firestorm of criticism on social media, including assertions that his comments and position were bigoted and hateful.
“The Office” star Ed Helms joined in, saying he was no longer a fan of the fast-food giant.
“Chick-fil-A doesn’t like gay people? So lame," he tweeted July 18. "Hate to think what they do to the gay chickens! Lost a loyal fan."
Evangelist Billy Graham returned to his home in Montreat, North Carolina, Tuesday afternoon following a six-day stay at nearby Mission Hospital in Asheville for treatment of pneumonia.
Graham's longtime spokesman A. Larry Ross tweeted on Tuesday: "Evangelist Billy Graham was released from Mission Hospital this afternoon, and will be home for the holidays!"
And he added, "Upon discharge from Mission Hospital, Billy Graham expressed gratitude for thoughts and prayers from around the world."
Graham was hospitalized on Wednesday, according to a release from the hospital.
Evangelist Billy Graham is showing signs of improvement as he continues to recover from pneumonia in a North Carolina hospital, a spokeswoman for Asheville's Mission Hospital said Sunday.
The 93-year-old Graham was admitted to the hospital Wednesday in stable condition.
"Doctors are encouraged by Mr. Graham's significant clinical progress, but have not yet set a date for discharge," hospital spokeswoman Merrell Gregory said in a statement.
Gregory also reported progress in Graham's physical therapy, saying he is "walking more in the private corridor outside his room."
Graham was visited over the weekend by his family, according to Gregory. He also watched on television his pastor deliver his regular Sunday sermon, she said.
This is Graham's second bout with pneumonia this year. He was previously hospitalized for the infection in May.
Evangelist Billy Graham is in "good spirits" and resting comfortably in an Asheville, North Carolina, hospital Thursday, a day after he was admitted for evaluation and treatment of his lungs, a spokesman said.
Graham spent time reading the Bible and praying with his daughter, Gigi, Wednesday night, Graham spokesman A. Larry Ross said on Twitter.
When Graham - who turned 93 on November 7 - was admitted to Mission Hospital, "he was alert, smiling and waving at hospital staff," according to a statement from the hospital.
"While no date has been set for discharge, Mr. Graham is looking forward to returning home to spend the upcoming Christmas holidays with his family," the statement said.
The Rev. Billy Graham, 92, was admitted Wednesday for treatment of a pulmonary condition following a health episode overnight, according to Mission Hospital in Asheville, North Carolina.
Initial testing suggested pneumonia, and further tests showed Graham's heart was normal, the hospital said in a statement.
The minister was reported to be in stable condition and fully alert.
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