Students at Duquesne University are petitioning their school to reconsider a plan to bring Chick-fil-A to campus, arguing the fast-food restaurant’s support for traditional marriage would create an unsafe environment for gay students.
Niko Martini, a student senator at the Pittsburgh university, filed a petition with the student government asking the school to reconsider the inclusion of Chick-fil-A in its Options Food Court.
“Chick-fil-A has a questionable history on civil rights and human rights,” Mr. Martini said in a statement to the student newspaper, The Duke. “I think it’s imperative the university chooses to do business with organizations that coincide with the [university’s] mission and expectations they give students regarding diversity and inclusion.”
Duquesne is a Catholic university, and the church teaches that all homosexual acts are “intrinsically evil.”
The student government did not adopt that resolution, but agreed to consider another measure vetting the views of the popular chicken sandwich shop.
Chick-fil-A has been a bane of the left since CEO Dan Cathy said the company supports “the biblical definition of the family unit.”
In 2015 the student government at Johns Hopkins University demanded the removal of Chick-fil-A from campus, calling its presence a “microaggression,” Campus Reform reported.
And New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio last year encouraged his constituents not to eat at a new Chick-fil-A location that opened in Queens.
Rachel Coury, president of the Duquesne gay-straight alliance, said she fears Chick-fil-A will roll back efforts to create a safe environment for gay students on campus.
“I’ve tried very hard within the last semester and a half to promote this safe environment for the LGBTQ+ community,” Ms. Coury told The Duke. “So I fear that with the Chick-fil-A … maybe people will feel that safe place is at risk.”
She said it would mean a lot to the LGBT community “if someone could make a statement to eliminate the fear of being marginalized by having this business on campus.”
Despite the concerns of some members of the Duquesne community, The Duke reports student response to the planned Chick-fil-A has been “mostly positive.”
“I think it gives us another option, and it’s more food choices that make us comparable to other colleges that have a lot more chain restaurants on their campus, which is something I think we lack,” computer science student Madison Seffrin told The Duke.
“It’s almost inevitable that a place that closes its doors on a Sunday will also not support some of the things that I support,” she added.
• Bradford Richardson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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