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Don’t mess with the Gospel Bird and don’t mess with Texas!
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has launched a formal investigation of the San Antonio City Council after they banned Chick-fil-A from opening a restaurant in the international airport.
City leaders accused the Atlanta-based restaurant chain of donating to groups like the Salvation Army and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes – respected organizations deemed anti-gay by critics.
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“The City of San Antonio’s decision to exclude a respected vendor based on the religious beliefs associated with that company and its owners is the opposite of tolerance,” Paxton said in a Facebook statement. “The city’s discriminatory decision is not only out of step with Texas values, but inconsistent with the Constitution and Texas law.”
City Councilman Roberto C. Treviño led the charge to block Chick-fil-A from opening a franchise in the airport. He accused the company of having a legacy of anti-LGBTQ behavior.
“With this decision, the City Council reaffirmed the work our city has done to become a champion of equality and inclusion,” Treviño said in a statement. “San Antonio is a city full of compassion, and we don’t have room in our public facilities for a business with a legacy of anti-LGBTQ behavior.”
Councilman Manny Peláez described Chick-fil-A as a “symbol of hate” because it has donated to religious charities that he considered to oppose LGBTQ rights.
To be clear, Chick-fil-A has never been accused of discriminating against gay employees or gay customers. They treat everyone equally. And just because someone supports traditional marriage does not make that person a homophobic bigot.
“We like our Chick-fil-A in Texas,” first assistant attorney general Jeff Mateer said on the Todd Starnes Radio Show. “Even more important than Chick-fil-A is religious liberty.”
Mateer said the investigation will focus on whether Chick-fil-A was discriminated against by the city of San Antonio.
“The decision made by the city council was motivated by religious hostility toward Chick-fil-A and specifically the leadership of Chick-fil-A,” he said.