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NH Pride Fest Accused of 'Pinkwashing' Chick-fil-A?

Organizers of LGBT event respond to concerns it's cozy with corporate nemesis.

NH Pride Fest is being forced to nurture its slogan, "Unity through Community," after some in the LGBT community expressed concern that Chick-fil-A is sponsoring its event Saturday in Manchester.

The mixed messaging stems from – the only franchise in the state – offering his support. NH Pride Fest organizers underscored their position Monday and distanced themselves, yet again, from the corporation and its president and chief operating officer, Dan Cathy.

Join The Impact Massachusetts, in a blog post, waved some red flags and questioned if the corporation was engaging in "pinkwashing."

"NH Pride should not be used to pinkwash Chick-fil-A or any other corporation," JTIM admonished.

Ryan Hirsch, director of facilitation for NH Pride Fest, said his organization supports the boycott of Chick-fil-A because "giving money to Chick-fil-A is like giving money and weapons to an army that wants to see you imprisoned, or put to death."

In his response to the Join The Impact Massachusetts blog post, Hirsch said,

"We DO NOT in any way support Chick-Fil-A, but do support Anthony Picolia and his staff for trying to step away from the damage his company has done to our communities, and thank him for wanting to come out and support us. We too hope that Anthony will join us in asking Chick-Fil-A to not donate, directly or indirectly, to harming our communities. We also ask that individuals maintain the boycott against Chick-Fil-A. We will not however punish those trying to move past the hate of their organization and who may have an actual ability to effect change within the company."

Read his full response here.

NH Pride Fest has events from noon to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 11, at Veterans Park in Manchester. Events include speakers at 2:30 p.m., a "puppy drag parade" at 3:30 p.m., and a "family friendly drag show" at 4 p.m.

Disappointed August 07, 2012 at 02:53 PM
Regardless of what Anthony Picolla has said, he is contractually obligated to continue paying profits to Dan Cathy and Chick-fil-a which is, in turn donated to anti-gay hate groups. Chick-Fil-A has no place at a "pride" event. The organizers of the NH "Pride" Fest have turned their backs on the LGBT community in favor of supporting this one man, and have sold the LGBT community out for $50!
MarkBoston August 07, 2012 at 04:36 PM
personally I think it's a positive step to have one franchise owner to come out in favor of equal rights for the Gay community . I suspect he will end up taking a lot of heat on this from the bigots and the home office . Take his $50.00, thank him for his patronage but don't ever set foot in his store to purchase anything as "Disappointed" states above ... He is contractually obligated to continue paying profits to Dan Cathy and Chick-fil-a which is, in turn donated to anti-gay hate groups. I am sure that even in Nazi Germany there were many Jewish sympathizers who stepped forward under the radar to do the right thing where they could .
Disappointed August 07, 2012 at 05:03 PM
Like Oskar Schindler? Difference is, he was keeping people alive and protected from torture. Although, he was profiting in the beginning, he eventually lost everything to help them. Not the same issue here......I would agree had Anthony Picolla donated all the money he made from the Aug 1st "Chick-Fil-A appreciation day" to a gay rights group, but he hasn't and won't. He wants to play both sides of this issue and it's time we stood up and said......no thank you. He can even donate the $50 to pridefest to show support, but don't ask us to eat the hate filled chicken sandwiches. Maybe he should just donate the food to a shelter or food kitchen..... Rather than setting up a photo op of LGBT people eating chick-fil-a like nothing has happened thereby washing away all of Dan Cathy's wrong doings, since people only look at the pictures and headlines.
Matthew August 08, 2012 at 06:06 AM
Dan Cathy's " wrong doings " , just because he agrees with traditional marriage that is "wrong doings" ... So one-sided some people are... Just because someone does not agree with a certain idea he gets persecuted for ... How sad .. I support Dan Cathy
Romeo Danais August 10, 2012 at 04:57 AM
I think LGBT is blowing this way out of proportion and trying to use it to promote its own interests. Cathy never said he hates gays, he has never said anything bad about gays, he has only said his religious beliefs are such that only a man and a woman can be married, that's all. Nothing more, nothing less! I think LGBT is using Obama style tactics to "never let a crisis go to waste", and there is no crisis. If you believe in tolerance then you must allow Cathy to believe in his religion.
Disappointed August 10, 2012 at 02:22 PM
Just so you understand, Dan Cathy is entitled to believe whatever he chooses, however it is his donating $5M to hate groups that we will not tolerate. You can have your religion, but they have no place in the formation of laws in this country. If Dan Cathy is allowed his freedom of speech, we are allowed ours, and we have clearly stated that we will not patronize a company that does not support equal rights for everyone. Marriage might be a sacrament in his religion, but in the US it is a legal binding agreement between two consenting adults, that's all.

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