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Kentucky GOP Lawmakers Ask If Chick-fil-A’s Civil Rights Were Violated For Being Called Anti-Gay

Sweet mother of moonshine!

Four Kentucky Republican lawmakers have written a letter to Kentucky Attorney General general calling for an opinion from Attorney General Jack Conway in regards to the backlash received by two companies, including Chick-fil-A, after taking anti-gay stances and weather their civil rights were

Here is the press release that followed via an article courtesy of The River City News

“On July 27, 2012, The Courier-Journal reported that the University of Louisville had issued a release criticizing recent statements by Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy as “offensive and unnecessary.” It was further reported that U of L Provost Shirley Willihnganz planned to meet with campus groups about an on-line petition to shut down the Chick-fil-A franchise in the school’s activity center,” Rep. Lee wrote in his letter. “What were Mr. Cathy’s alleged offensive comments–that he supported “traditional marriage.”

Rep. Lee also cited recent backlash against Lexington-based Hands On Originals, which declined to produce shirts and apparel for a Gay Pride event in the city.

On March 28, 2012, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported that the Fayette County Public Schools had put a hold on purchases from Hands On Originals. The paper also reported that the Lexington mayor had criticized Hands On by saying, “People don’t have patience for this sort of attitude today.” The Lexington mayor was further quoted as saying, “I am against discrimination period. It is bad for business and bad for the city,” Rep. Lee’s letter stated.

Because of those two incidents, Rep. Lee cites the Kentucky Marriage Amendment which was approved by voters in 2004, and asks whether statements by government officials in both situations violate the state and Federal constitutions.

“In light of the foregoing, I request your opinion as to whether the actions of any of the governmental officials, noted above, violated the civil rights of the owners of these two private businesses under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, Section 1 of Bill of Rights of the Kentucky Constitution (which also protects the rights of free speech), or Section 233A of the Kentucky Constitution,” Rep. Lee wrote.

Of course we all know that Chick-fil-A came under fire from not because of CEO Dan Cathy’s statement but because of the corporations generous giving to anti-gay hate groups.  But if these Kentucky Republican lawmakers cite “Freedom of (Hate) Speech” under the First Amendment for Dan Cathy. Then the same should be true for the lawmakers and newspapers that they quote.

Will Kohler

Will Kohler is a noted LGBT historian, journalist and owner of Back2Stonewall.com. A longtime gay activist, Will fought on the front lines of the AIDS epidemic with ACT-UP and continues fighting today for LGBT acceptance and full equality. Will’s work has been referenced in notable media venues as MSNBC and BBC News, The Washington Post, The Daily Beast, Hollywood Reporter, and Raw Story,

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