gay pride chick-fil-a
© Chicago Tribune
Conservatives on Twitter have turned their fire on restaurant franchise Chick-fil-A after the company announced the hiring of a new vice president dedicated to bringing diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts to the traditionally conservative chicken sandwich brand.

Attention was drawn to a new posting on Chick-fil-A's website featuring Erick McReynolds, the new Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, who is quoted as saying the company is "committed to ensuring mutual respect, understanding, and dignity everywhere we do business." A tweet highlighting his comments also shows a separate website page describing the company's "Better At Together" initiative, which states, "when we combine our unique backgrounds and experiences with a culture of belonging, we can strengthen the quality of care we deliver."

Another conservative Twitter user unearthed video of former Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy talking about an incident involving a parishioner in Texas who was so concerned about racism in his community that he made the effort to shine the shoes of a fellow Black parishioner. Cathy then stood up and walked over to a Black attendee sitting across from him to demonstrate the same act of humility. Outrage to the clip was swift.

The Atlanta-based chain is now headed by Cathy's son, Andrew Truett Cathy, who continues to direct the company's political action committee to donate almost exclusively to Republican candidates and conservative causes. Chick-fil-A famously closes its doors on Sunday, one of the few nationwide companies to honor the traditional day of rest. Despite this, the 'conservative' company rakes in $9 billion annually and is among the 10 most profitable restaurant chains in the United States.

In recent months, conservatives and Republican candidates have expressed outrage at companies they say are going "woke" with messages geared at inclusivity at the expense of their loyal customers. Bud Light has withered months of criticism and heavy profit losses over its partnership with a transgender social media influencer. Other companies like Target and Kohl's have been in the crosshairs for selling LGBTQ-themed gear ahead of Pride Month, which takes place in June.