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Menino to Chick-fil-A: Cluck you

The mayor is vowing to block the chicken chain from opening a location on the Freedom Trail after its president said gay marriage could bring God's wrath down on America, the Herald reports. The chain is looking at replacing the Purple Shamrock near Faneuil Hall.

Earlier:
Northeastern skewers plans for campus Chick-fil-A.

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When did the shamrock close?

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Due to high rent, it got raised 60% and that's why the McDonald's is gone too.

http://www1.whdh.com/news/articles/local/boston/12...

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S Truett Cathy says the business exists "To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us. To have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A."

Sounds decent so far.

Chick-fil-A has also promoted religious groups via toys and CDs included in children's meals.

I'm not big on a hidden agenda of proselytizing kids. Why can't they respect other people's religions?

Here's where I draw a the line -- employee prayer -- which by the way is the basis of a law suit at Jenzibar?, the company of MA GOP chair Robert Manginn.

Chick-fil-A's connection to Christianity has been brought before the courts when Aziz Latif, a Houston-based Muslim employee for six years, sued the company in 2002 for firing him, alleging that he was fired for his religious beliefs when he had refused to take part in an employee prayer. The suit was settled on undisclosed terms.

and more:

Support of anti-gay organizations
Response from universities and student groups
Opposition to same-sex marriage

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for once i'm with Menino

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Unless we don't agree with your religion and we don't like what you say.

Don't get me wrong, I agree 100% with Menino on the repulsiveness of Chik Fil A's attitude, but we have freedom of religion and speech in this country and this type of attitude from a high ranking government official is equally repugnant.

No matter what you think of the Chik Fil A boss' comments, they should be treated just like everyone else. That's what we believe as Americans.

This is one more reason why we need a new mayor - he thinks he owns the place - but I'm not holding my breath for a change if he runs again - the powers that be will be sure to see that he wins.

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I have to agree, a mayor should not have the power to block a restaurant like this. A restaurant can be block by an uninterested land owner, it can be blocked by a health inspector (but it would still mean being built first and finding it not up to code), I can even agree if the area is not zoned - then it can be blocked that it can be blocked by refusal of rezoning. But picking and choosing restaurants shouldn't be something a mayor can do.

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Ever hear of redlining? That's how the Jews and blacks were kept out of WASP neighborhoods for decades. The courts have been clear -- no can do. If Menino shouldn't keep Chick-fil-A out on religious grounds, neither should the landlord.

Of course, some would say that it's not religious -- it's anti-bigotry. There are plenty of Christians who aren't homo-bigots.

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There are plenty of Christians who aren't homo-bigots.

I hear this a lot from people, but it still misses the point. Justifying religious discrimination on the grounds that *SOME* people within a religion hold a viewpoint similar to your own misses the point. You're still dictating how other people should believe. The fact is that those more "progressive" Christians are in the minority. Most denominations AND world religions are still against gay marriage, in case you didn't know. Therefore, it is STILL discrimination against religion.

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Besides, wouldn't the better strategy be to let them open in prime real estate and then have nobody go there, thus bleeding them dry slowly and teaching them a lesson all at the same time?

The mayor has every right to say something like "I don't want you here and you are repulsive to everything this city stands for", but to say he's going to block them from setting up shop isn't appropriate.

The restaurant itself doesn't discriminate in service so you can't claim that it only serves a certain portion of the population, thus blocking it on discrimination grounds. The location is not owned by the city, so it has no decision-making ability to decide who rents the space. So, this could all be total blunderbuss from the mayor, but to threaten their ability to get necessary licensing is inappropriate and echos times like the liquor shop that couldn't open in Hyde Park because of the mayor's office showing up to the Licensing Board meeting to complain.

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But that's the thing- the Mayor *isn't* blocking them from setting up shop. He specifically said so. He recognizes that they have the right to open up there, but that he does not want them to and is going public about that. Essentially, saying something like "I don't want you here and you are repulsive to everything this city stands for" is *exactly* what he is doing. And like you said, he has every right to do so.

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You are responding to a statement I wrote immediately after the initial Herald article quoting Menino as stating he would do everything he could to prevent them from opening in that location.

It was later in time (in another topic here on UHub, even) where he corrected himself to the press and apologized for his self-titled "Meninoism" of having claimed to be able to stop them from opening.

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Wait, so you believe that Menino saying Boston doesn't want folks like that is THE SAME as being a prejudged, hateful biggot? Yeah, not so much.

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In the case of Chick fil A - you have a single hater - albeit exercising his constitutional rights.

In many ways Menino is worse - he's a powerful government official seeking to use his power to deny someone those rights (nothing new for him). That challenges everything I believe that the government is there to protect us all equally - thus my support for gay rights and gay marriage.

Left unchecked, Menino and this kind of thinking are far more dangerous than a rich but lone bigot.

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Menino should have kept his yap shut, even though I'm glad he feels this way about Chick-fil-A's owner's opinion about gay marriage. As has been argued, this jerk should not be denied his ability to open a restaurant in a space zoned for a restaurant solely on the basis that you don't like his opinions -- especially when the "you" in question is a thin-skinned autocratic mayor. Would have been nice to see him open the place up to a response of creative protests capped by their closing down a few months later.

The benevolent dictator is not a good governance model. But to refer to the head of a large corporate entity as just a "lone bigot" doesn't do justice to the danger that he represents as well. Not in a country where corporate rights are held sacrosanct and increasingly above those of individuals. It's a load of work to try and prove that some CEO's biases are being played out through their corporation. Ultimately if Chik-fil-A denies employment to gays or employee benefits to gay employees (or gay marriage supporters) or refuses to serve gay patrons, then you can take your case to court - but that can be as hard as fighting city hall.

Menino was wrong in his assertion that he can use "his" power to stop this bigot from opening a business. But to describe the head of a large company with a lot of hard-to-check power over the lives of people around the country, as being just a "rich but lone bigot" is like saying the mayor of Boston is "just an elected official."

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He's not blocking them for their religion. Religion has nothing to do with it. He's blocking them for the franchise's hateful stance towards a minority.

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Adam, Adam, Adam - don't you mean "cluck you"?

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Headline changed, thanks!

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Cock-A-Doodle-Screw!

Suldog
http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

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Middle Finger Lickin Good?

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Cluck-U is/was a chain that served hot wings and buffalo chicken sandwiches in the Maryland area. At the location near Uni of Maryland, College Park, there was an employee/possibly UM student who looked like Tupac (ca.2001-2005). Cluck-U-Pac would rap around campus and at the Cluck-U.

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Many a late nights spent at the College Park Cluck-U. Thanks for bringing back some good memories :)

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Cluck-U is also an Ohio State institution as well.... mashed potato sandwich.

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as their business model, then maybe I should open a burger place whose business philosophy is based on "Fifty Shades of Grey". Hot, horny MILF's serving you greasy burgers and fries. Yum!

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already tried that.

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They use young sexy hotties, and dvdoff is suggesting hot, horny MILFs. See the distinction?

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I bet their whipped potatoes are mmm-mmm good! Watch the way they pour that gravy on! Ooooh boy.

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but MILFs aren't the ones reading that book. TwiMoms who haven't gotten any since their last kid was born 8 years ago and think that leaving the lights on is kink are the ones reading that book.

Now that is a business model that's sure to fial.

TwiMom: http://www.hollywoodlife.com/2010/06/14/twilight-n...

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I don't think I really want my food to be fifty shades of grey.

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No, really. If two gay guys owned it, it would be fine. If it's a conservative Christian point of view, then they are to be banned. Well, NU kept them off campus, but a perusal of the comments in the story Adam linked to includes a telling comment by Kaz, "Nobody's suggesting Chik-Fil-A can't move into Downtown Crossing, right next to one of those Urban Outfitters even."
Well, they seem to be suggesting that now.
Oh, BTW, before someone here calls me a homophobic asshole, I'm not against gay marriage.

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Your fallacy is false equivalence.

Surely you understand the difference between "a business owned by two gay guys" versus a business owned by a guy who preaches intolerance, you're missing the picture.

It's kind of like saying, "You're hypocritical if you would ban the KKK but allow businesses owned by black people."

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His point is: Business A is run within the law by a homophobic Christian. Do you attempt to use your position as mayor to stop it? Business B is run within the law by a gay man. Do you attempt to use your position as mayor to stop it?

Why is it even remotely appropriate for you as mayor to stop either of these businesses? In the eyes of government, both of these businesses should be equally valid based solely on the fact that they are run legally. This isn't SimCity. The mayor doesn't get to hand-pick who opens a business here or not.

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Kaz, I don't follow you here. Are you arguing that the mayor does not have the authority to stop a business from opening? If so, then you are right in your assertion that a gay couple opening a restaurant and a bigot opening a restaurant are no different.

But if the mayor does have the authority, then this probably is a false equivalence.

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Since a restaurant is allowed at the location by right, I would love to see the buffoon Menino use heavy handed, behind the scenes tactics to make things difficult or impossible for Chick-Fil-A. After Menino's assinine threats against the company because of the views held by its president and shared by a majority of Americans, a succesful Civil Rights lawsuit or even federal prosecution, would surely follow. Sadly, cameras aren't alowed in federal court so we'd have to rely on sketches depicting Menino on the stand, mouth open, tongue out.

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But you're wrong about the "majority of Americans". The majority opinion is currently somewhere between "Yes" and "Meh". The "No" crowd is in the minority.

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Can either of you support your assertions via statistical evidence? I'm willing to bet "No".

On the one hand, you may be able to cite referendum voting from SOME states and perhaps some polls showing a majority of Americans self-proclaiming as Christian (or other religious affiliation that may officially see homosexuality as a sin, although many adherents may differ in conscience.) On the other hand, maybe there are judicial rulings tossed into the pot, as well as a whole bunch of tangential evidence from popular entertainments (although I think we might safely say that the field of entertainment has never been known as a hotbed of radical conservatism.) But to flat out state that a majority of Americans are in agreement, without more to back it up? Please cite your sources. I'd probably like to quote those sources someday when involved in a similar argument.

Suldog
http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

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PollingData.com give the stats and a historical reference for a wide variety of poll types and question formats, with statistical error margins.

In general, we are leaning in favor, in a margin that exceeds the margin of error, and the historical points from the Gallup and Pew polls show a very clear trend of something between 1/2% and 1% every 6 months moving in favor.

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Here you go:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_opinion_of_sam...

If I skimmed it correctly, that's 7 polls from this year alone that all show a majority opinion in favor of same-sex marriage. There isn't a single one quoted in opposition to same-sex marriage in 2012. Also, if you read the previous polling data quoted there, the trend has been strong and uni-directionally towards greater acceptance of same-sex marriage.

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Great minds...

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That's all I was asking for, some strong statistical evidence. Equal time: Can the other side in the argument cite sources? If not, then...

Suldog
http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

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The only poll that matters is taken on election day. Homosexual marriage has lost in all 31 states that have voted on it. This thread and Menino's threats are good examples of why poll results are skewed in a sort of Bradley effect on the issue. To support traditional marriage is to invite all kinds of invective from the "tolerant" side, homophobe, bigot etc. Understandably, many of those polled apparently fib to pollsters in order to sidestep the abuse but then remain true at the ballot box. Even in far-left California and Maine!

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You see people lying in polling data, which is specious, and I see the difference in motivation between the pro- and against- crowds. You can motivate a whole hell of a lot of people to vote against something where they feel like their marriage is being trod upon, but the vast majority of voters have no skin in the game whatsoever. Do you not see that as playing a part?

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Which election day? Nearly all of those 31 states voted on their constitutional amendments in 2004 (or earlier) amidst the Bush v Kerry backdrop. That was also a time when the public polling was reversed from today and a majority did oppose same sex marriage.

Here in Futureland, it is 8 years later, Marty McFly. People's opinions have changed and nationally you are wrong about what people are saying to the surveys and why. I'm sure some shithole like Mississippi is going to be the last to allow gays to marry without the Federal government overriding them. Hell, they still have a problem with African-Americans getting all uppity on them down there and yet I'm pretty sure black civil rights poll higher than 50% most places.

Also, if you don't even get a 50% turnout for an election, then how can you use it to conclude what a "majority" of anyone is thinking? That's just not even valid math.

But in today's terms, you are just flat quoting the history book and attempting to make up excuses for why it doesn't match today's reality.

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To support traditional marriage is to invite all kinds of invective from the "tolerant" side....

Traditional meaning one white man and one white woman?

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No, traditional meaning when the woman is owned by the man, obviously.

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Get it right!

IMAGE(http://bobcargill.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/biblical-marriage.jpg)

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that when people criticize Christian traditions, the examples usually come from the Old Testament.

The Old Testament also says that women can't wear pants but Christian women wear pants all the time. Christians also eat plenty of bacon, another violation of Levite Law. I don't have any stats to back this up, just anecdotal evidence from living in the Deep South and doing research at Waffle House.

Christians have a new covenant with God and are not subject to Levite Law.

If you don't like Chick-Fil-A don't go there. As someone who is proud as all get out that we were the first state in the US to legalize gay marriage, I would never go there but if other people do, well that's capitalism at work.

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Because that is where all the hating comes from, and it is the Old Testament passages that "christians" like to trot out as being "in the bible" and therefore "should be law" when they sling unChristian hate around.

No True Scotsman Fallacy, Nancy. Look it up.

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They do pick and choose what they like from the bible and leave out what they don't like. What I would love to see someday is that graphic with verses from the New Testament. Luke, Romans or Ephesians would be a good place to start.

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Look at the polling that has been done for those under 30. Even better, watch an episode of Glee and just imagine what people under 18 think about this. Each year that "no" number is going to go down, and each year more than before.

Call the "yesses" bigots, call them old fashioned, call them defenders of traditional marriage values. Whatever you call them, they are dying faster than the no's.

Your revolution is over Lebowski. Condolences.

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a politically incorrect poster to be labelled a "troll". Thanks for shaking the trees. Because we all know people shouldn't be allowed to vote with their feet and just not patronize the place. (I like to think that just my lost business has cost The Upper Crust a fortune.)

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Care to rethink your position re: the majority of Americans?

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Y'know, I've gone back and forth on my reaction to this news. For me, one of the things that makes a difference is that in Massachusetts, sexual orientation is a protected class. So if the Chik-fil-A president had said the same thing but about [people of a certain race]/people with disabilities/[people of a certain religion], would that make a difference?

Then again, the company alleges they don't have any discriminatory practices that would get them in hot water with the law, and lots of assholes run businesses in this state, so why make a stink about this one? It does seem a little dictatorial.

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Chick-Fil-A has never refused to serve a gay person. As far as I can tell from a basic search on Google, they have never discriminated against a gay employee or discriminated against hiring one either. Until they were to do either of these things here in MA, sexual orientation's class status is irrelevant. They abide by the law when it comes to gays as a group of people.

The uproar is how the company chooses to spend its money after it has made it. It's a valid complaint and one which would make you think hard before patronizing their business, knowing what they will do with part of the money. It's a reason that the landlord might want to avoid renting to them if they have a problem with that knowledge, like in the case of Northeastern University. But it's nothing the government should be able to stop or block.

Now, if Menino would like to let us all know who the landlord is and what else he owns around town so we know who might be considering getting in bed with Chick-Fil-A and so we all can let the landlord know what we think of someone who would choose to do business with them, that would be entirely legitimate, I think. Hell, we could already start a boycott for the fact that he raised the Purple Shamrock's rent 60% causing them to close!

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But have they ever refused to employ anyone because of sexual orientation? And, are they willing to provide a married gay person the same health insurance and other benefits they provide to all their employees? I would assume they are since they are already operating in Burlington, but it would be interesting to see.

Flood them with same sex couple applicants as soon as they plan to open and watch them squirm.

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It's not enough to just say they are willing to hire anyone. They've already created a hostile working environment based on these statements. No LGBT folks or allies are going to feel welcomed and feel confident that they'd be treated fairly as employees there.

I think the KKK analogy was pretty apt, really. So, it would be OK if the KKK set up a storefront here, as long as they assured us that they wouldn't refuse to hire any of the swarms of Black people who came rushing in to fill out applications?

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If the president of Anon Fried Chicken had stated in the press that he didn't particularly care for Asian people, or black people....should that company then be barred from opening a restaurant? I'd still say no. As another poster stated, if he's opening a legal restaurant within the current building and health codes, he should be allowed open just like anyone else. Ideally he piles a ton of money into the place and people protest the opening or just withhold business and he's forced to close, but when government starts getting involved and "blocking" legal businesses from operating, there's a problem.

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Their blatant statements that they intend to disobey the labor laws by discriminating against gay and even unmarried employees (their stated policy!) is enough to tell them to cluck themselves.

In fact, Chick Fil A wouldn't have even employed Jesus, as he was single and lived an alternative lifestyle.

Funny how "God's Wrath on America" seems to be falling on the doorstep of the self-proclaimed most righteous areas. Hmmm.

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Speaking as a married, gay man.

....If I were in the mayors position, I would be less concerned about the CEO's remarks, and more concerned with having a business in a prime tourist location go dark every Sunday.

The financial district has enough shuddered storefronts on Sunday, we don't need one across from Fanueil Hall.

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How about making life difficult-to-impossible for the labor/immigration criminals that run the Upper Crust? The're actually breaking the law, not just being socially retarded.

Can we shut them down?

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In addition to the gay issue, the food served there is fast food....we have enough fast food places on that block - I believe the McDonald's is still next door....can't we get a place to serve nutritional food there instead of food that won't rot after two years in the sun!

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That McD's shut down. Going to be replaced with a generic, cookie cutter, closed after 5 and on weekends bank branch.

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So we have a local pub and an almost always open Mc'd's closed, and we replace it with a chain restaurant that's not open much and a bank.

Sounds like downtown is doing just fine....

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I find Chick-Fil-A's position reprehensible but I don't think I like the idea of politicians making licensing/zoning choices based on the political stance of business owners.

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Many commenters have already pointed out the inappropriateness of the mayor personally (and illegally) blocking a restaurant from opening because of the owner's political views (views which I find repulsive, if it matters). But what about this: We have a mayor who openly, without fear, states that he will break the law by standing in their way. This is the same mayor who participated in a video that compared him to the Godfather for blocking Don Chiofaro's harbor plan because Chiofaro didn't pay him the proper respect by bringing him the plan before he brought it to the public.

Lots of big city mayors play favorites and bend the rules. Ours openly promises to break the rules and admits to punishing people who he doesn't like, and we accept it. Shame on us.

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mention the bigger picture here.

The Catholic Church is against gay marriage as well! I think Mayor Mumbles, in his infinte wisdom, should ban all Catholics from opening businesses in Boston as well. I mean, MA is the home of everyone is equal in every way all the time, correct? If that's true then we need to get the Catholics out ASAP! /snark

I disagree with Chick's attitude towards gay marriage but singling them out on this issue is ridiculous, the mayor's office should get to work fixing the city's issues, and letting the people speak with their wallets like everywhere else.

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