Chick-fil-A Controversy Exposes Media's Anti-Christian Bias and Free Speech Double Standard

Coalition of Citizens Against Religious Bigotry Outraged Over Media Smears

ALEXANDRIA, VA – Through the coalition of Citizens Against Religious Bigotry (CARB), more than 20 conservative leaders have joined Media Research Center (MRC) President Brent Bozell in raising their voices in support of religious freedom and our Constitutionally protected right to free speech. The controversy over Chick-fil-A exposed the rampant anti-Christian bias and First Amendment double standard characteristic of liberal media.

What began with Chick-fil-A President and COO Dan Cathy’s unremarkable comments affirming his family’s belief in the traditional definition of marriage swiftly and loudly escalated into a contrived culture war fueled by the liberal media:

1. On Wednesday, August 1, the night of Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day, CBS Evening News ignored the story entirely while NBC Nightly News aired five different clips of anti-Chick-fil-A protesters to offset the hundreds of thousands who showed up in support of traditional marriage and freedom of speech.

2. On Thursday morning, the networks continued their smear campaign against Cathy as an anti-gay bigot and Chick-fil-A’s Christian principals as hate speech. CBS This Morning’s anchor Charlie Rose vilified patrons as anti-gay, stating that “thousands went there to eat and to make a statement - a statement against same sex marriage.” On Friday morning, Good Morning America’s Steve Osunsami similarly slandered Chick-fil-A and its leadership, mischaracterizing Chick-fil-A’s pro-traditional marriage stance as a “fight against gay Americans and gay marriage.”

3. The media underplayed gross government overreach by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Boston Mayor Tom Menino when they pledged to ban Chick-fil-A from doing business in their cities. If a conservative mayor had tried blocking a pro-gay marriage business from opening through the threat of government reprisal, the media would be calling for his resignation.

4. When the media-hyped “Kiss-in” counter protest planned for Friday fizzled, the media omitted any substantial coverage of its embarrassing failure. If a large-scale Tea Party rally had been such a flop, the liberal media wouldn’t be able to talk about it enough.


“It’s a double standard as old as the liberal media itself,” stated Media Research Center President Brent Bozell. “If it’s part of the liberal agenda, it’s protected free speech. If it isn’t, it’s bigotry. The media smeared anyone who lined up for a chicken sandwich as an anti-gay bigot instead of a proud Christian or free speech patriot, and when the counter-protest flopped, they were predictably silent. Thanks to Chick-fil-A, the media’s liberal bias was stark naked for all to see.”



1)      The liberal media, who constantly remind us of THEIR rights to freedom of speech and expression, have shown with stark and blatant hypocrisy their belief that these same rights don't apply for those with whom they disagree politically.  Their attack and encouraged hostility toward a private citizen for expressing his deeply held religious beliefs is disgusting and un-American.

--Jim Martin, Chairman of the 60 Plus Association


2)      It's hypocrisy!  The "mainstream" news media are quick to defend First Amendment protections for journalists, but they wilfully disregard and even scoff at First Amendment freedoms for religious believers.  Here's news for the New York Times: the family is a much older and stronger institution than yours, and God is not dead.

--Patrick Reilly, President, Cardinal Newman Society


3)      The liberal media saw what grassroots, Christian conservative Americans feel about homosexual marriage and they just can't stand it! Americans are waking up to the twisted and bigoted media. Maybe there is hope after all.

--Donald E. Wilmon, Founder and Chairman Emeritus, American Family Association


4)      "No matter how much the leftist media wants Americans to believe the redefinition of marriage is inevitable, that's simply not the case.  Every state that has had the chance has voted overwhelmingly to protect marriage as the union between one man and one woman and last Wednesday, pro-marriage Americans visited Chick-fil-A restaurants across the country, voting with their pocketbooks.”

-- David Cortman, Senior Counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom


5)      Liberals were so very foolish to pick this fight. Last Wednesday’s national outpouring of support for traditional marriage, free speech, and free enterprise demonstrates how classy and tolerant Americans truly are, and how classless and out of the mainstream the Left has become.  

-- Michelle Easton, President, Clare Booth Luce Policy Institute


6)      “The Chick-fil-A story should have been on the front page of every newspaper and the top story of every news broadcast. The Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day showed two things – the majority of people in America support conservative values, and the media can’t stand those values and will do everything to report fictional ‘news’ that exists only the their minds.”       

--Mathew D. Staver, Founder and Chairman, Liberty Counsel


7)      “What is most disappointing about the coverage of the Chick-fil-A story is the false narrative perpetuated by the media that standing for God’s plan for marriage somehow means that we are hateful towards or intolerant of homosexuals—a clear and biased attack by the media on the Christian faith. We do not discriminate against anyone, but recognize there are core values laid forth by the Christian faith that promote the common good, and our freedom to speak and exercise those values must not be silenced.”                                

--Father Shenan J. Boquet, President, Human Life International


8)      Dan Cathy has taken heat from the mainstream media, however the fact that August 1st marks a world sales record for Chick-fil-A reveals that Americans still believe in religious freedom. The Constitution--a document that evolved from our Judeo-Christian heritage--promotes free expression of religion and guarantees protection from such persecution.”

--Lea Carawan, Executive Director, Congressional Prayer Caucus Foundation


9)      "Chick-fil-A one of the finest companies in America. God has a plan and a kingdom purpose that is bigger than any man or woman and bigger than any politician.  In the face of the religious bigotry we have seen coming at this private company, we must stand beside them in the public square." -

-- Ralph Reed, Chairman, Faith and Freedom Coalition


10)   The point about this whole controversy that I find so amusing and ironic is how President Obama's publicly stated position on gay marriage has for years, until very recently, mirrored that of Chick-fil-A president Dan Cathy. But now that he has flip-flopped again on this issue, and at least verbally supports gay marriage, the media believe the time is ripe for piling on not only Chick-fil-A, but the whole Judeo-Christian belief in traditional marriage. 

--Don Irvine, Chairman of Accuracy in Media


11)   “Mr. Cathy’s simple exercise of constitutionally protected free speech and religious liberty has the mayors of Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago and Washington, D.C. acting like political thugs, using their elected office to threaten Chick-fil-A business in their cities.  The massive outpouring of support on “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day” shows that Americans are growing tired of these bullies, their hatred of God and their disdain for those who choose God over the state.”                                                                                                                         

-- Paul E. Rondeau, M.A.M., Executive Director, American Life League


12)   Thanks to the mayors of Boston and Chicago, for helping the libertarians and the social conservatives identify what their common interest is: defending freedom.                                                 

--Barbara Ledeen , WomenUnited


13)   "Most people misunderstand the Chick-fil-A controversy.   It's not about any corporate policy related to hiring employees or serving customers. It's about constitutionally-protected personal speech.  Free speech advocates regardless of ideology should all support Mr. Cathy's right to speak freely."

-- Colin Hanna, President, Let Freedom Ring


14)   In order to grasp the absurdity of the call to boycott  Chick Fil A, just think what your reaction and that of everyone you knew at the time would have been had some suggested even five years ago that a business should be impeded in its enterprise because it's CEO publicly said he believe in the tradition or marriage. The current imbroglio is enough to drive a vegetarian to "eat more chicken".

--Rev. Robert Sirico, President, Acton Institute


15)   "Religious liberty is under assault in America by an Obama administration that has done more to undermine American values than at any other time in our history.  If we don't fight for our liberties -- and I mean stand up, become active, and push back against the liberals waiting for government to stomp out our faith with their agenda -- Christians will find themselves silenced, shamed, and eventually outnumbered by those seeking to radically redefine the American landscape."

--Rev Louis P. Sheldon, Chairman and Founder, Andrea S. Lafferty, President, Traditional Values Coalition


16)   "The radical assault on Chick-fil-A by zealous anti-Christian and anti-American zealots has backfired.  Christian citizens and freedom-loving Americans are rightfully outraged by the blatant attempt to use the heavy hand of government to censor and discriminate against an American business because its CEO believes in the sanctity of marriage.  The politicians who seek to punish certain political and religious beliefs are the real perpetrators of hate and intolerance.”  

--Brian Burch, President,


17)   When the mainstream media ignore stories that are important to millions of Americans, out of ideological bias and anti-Christian animus, they’re just diving more nails into their own coffins.  The media’s continuing failure to perform their vital role in our culture is making them irrelevant and accelerating their replacement by new sources of information.

--Dr. Jim Garlow, Chairman, Renewing American Leadership Action


18)   When sitting mayors proclaim that a private company, like Chic-fil-A, is not welcome in their city because its owner believes in the Bible’s teaching on marriage and family, that’s big news.    It’s news because those elected officials are publicly declaring they will defend ideology over the legal rights of our citizens.  

--Father Jonathan Morris, Program Director, "The Catholic Channel"


19)   Our early colonists' and Founders' claims are being turned on their head.  Continually, our grassroots believers are asked to make the same impossible choice America’s founders faced:  live fidelity to your faith or your government. The media’s attack against Chic-fil-A is over nothing less than that same battle.

--Marjorie Dannenfelser, President, Susan B. Anthony List


20)   When millions of people turned out nationwide this past Wednesday for Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day and the news reports gave greater coverage to the small bands of protesters at a couple of locations, the average Joe was incredulous.  What better evidence that the mainstream media cares little for Christians and traditional values do we need?                                                                                  

--Brian Brown, President, National Organization for Marriage


21)  "Dan Cathy and Chick-fil-A took quite a hammering from much of the media and pro-same sex marriage groups over his stance on traditional marriage. When he was targeted for ridicule and humiliation for standing firm in his personal convictions and faith, he did not back down nor did he have a spokesman try to explain what the CEO really meant. Americans voted with their feet and their purses as they sent a message that should resonate with the leaders of this nation.                       

--William G. "Jerry" Boykin  Executive Vice President, FRC, retired lieutenant general of the U.S. Army


To schedule an interview with MRC President Brent Bozell or another MRC spokesperson, please contact Jeremy Little - (703)-683-5004