The Anti-Cathy? Amazon’s Founder Donates $2.5 Million for Same-Sex Marriage Support
Conservatives are flocking to Chick-Fil- A-Fil in terms of support and vow to make sales its chicken sandwhich go through the roof on a given day and survive a boycott in light of is CEO Dan Cathy’s comments about same sex marriage. Newser:
In addition to Mike Huckabee, who declared Aug. 1 “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day”—187,000 RSVPs so far—now tweets and messages of support are pouring in from the likes of Rick Santorum; Rev. Roger Oldham, spokesman for the Southern Baptist Convention; and even Boston Bruins goalie Tim Thomas.
Evangelist Billy Graham has waded into the debate, too, saying he “appreciates” Chick-fil-A for not compromising its values, according the CBN News. “I want to express my support for my good friends Truett Cathy and his son Dan Cathy, and for their strong stand for the Christian faith,” wrote Graham in a statement.
They say for every reaction there is a counter-reaction. And the high profile of Cathy. the resulting boycott and conservative rush to defiantly gobble a Chick-Fil-A chicken sandwich as political statement is now countered by another corporate bigwig who is projecting the opposite attitude on same sex marriage — and backing it up with his big bucks:
Jeff Bezos, the billionaire founder of Amazon.com, and his wife, MacKenzie, have agreed to donate $2.5 million to help pass a same-sex marriage referendum in Washington State, instantly becoming among the largest financial backers of gay marriage rights in the country.
With the gift, the couple have doubled the money available to the proponents of Referendum 74, which would legalize same-sex marriage in the state by affirming a law that passed the Legislature this year. Courts or lawmakers have declared gay marriage legal in six other states, but backers of such measures have never succeeded at the ballot box.
Proponents of the effort in Washington State called it a game-changing gift that gives them a fighting chance in November.
“To get this from a straight, married couple sends a powerful message that marriage is seen as a fundamental question of fairness,” Zach Silk, the campaign manager for Washington United for Marriage, said Thursday in an interview.
Mr. Bezos, who founded Amazon.com in 1994 in Seattle and remains its president, now tops a growing list of heterosexual business executives who are replacing wealthy gay people as the some of the biggest donors to the movement behind same-sex marriage and equality for gay men and lesbians. Bill Gates and Steven A. Ballmer of Microsoft each gave $100,000 to the referendum campaign, according to its officials.
But with the seven-figure gift, Mr. Bezos — a famously private executive who runs a $48 billion-a-year retail empire — has now set the bar even higher.
Just as Cathy’s pronouncements impacted his company’s image, so will Brezos’.
If conservatives buy Chick-Fil-A on the designated day it could zoom sales and be a media story. Media types can be relied on to check months from now to see if the boycott or political image impact has any long lasting consquences. But on the designated day, expect sales to zoom.
One lunch order from Rush Limbaugh alone could make up for a week of lost sales.
Meanwhile, get ready for a boycott of Amazon by some conservatives….
What chicken sandwich you eat and where you buy your books may define you in 21st century America.