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Burger King's Gay-Pride Whopper Promotion Incites Boycotts from Conservative Family Groups

( [email protected] ) Jul 23, 2014 04:23 AM EDT
The American Family Association is launching a campaign against Burger King, which recently held a promotion featuring a rainbow-packaged, pro-gay "Proud Whopper." The organization encourages Christians to think twice before buying Burger King products, saying the company is "encouraging unhealthy behavior."
Burger King featured the ''Proud Whopper'' during the annual LGBT parade in San Francisco, CA. (AP)

The American Family Association has launched a campaign against a Burger King promotion in San Francisco that featured a rainbow-packaged, limited-edition gay pride Whopper, warning that the fast food chain may go national with the burger.

"Even though this promotion was at just one location, as a chain, Burger King is promoting homosexual behavior as healthy and something to have pride in," said AFA president Tim Wildmon in a statement released Wednesday. "We believe that promoting and encouraging unhealthy behavior will drive families away."

"The Proud Whopper" promotion was originally held the week of 4th of July and at a facility near the parade route of San Francisco's annual gay pride event

According to USA Today, Fernando Machado, Burger King's Senior Vice President of Global Brand Management, defended the company, saying the pro-gay burger "showcases who we are as a brand," and, "It shows how we, as a brand, believe in self-expression."

In response, AFA sent an Action Alert out to its supporters and created an email that can be sent directly to Burger King executives. The email states:

"I am offended by Burger King's stunt in offering a so-called "Proud Whopper" in San Francisco. What were you thinking? Your celebrated promotion of cross-dressers and homosexuality is an insult to families and I find your celebration of abhorrent behavior as a reason to dine elsewhere."

"I hope you will learn from this publicity blunder and realize that while most stores did not participate in the corporate-approved program, the damage has been done and affects the image of all Burger King outlets."

The AFA is not the only group to oppose Burger King's support for gay rights. Theologian John Piper took to Twitter to voice his disapproval of the company's decision.

"Good-bye, Burger King. http://dsr.gd/1kmsDPv (If you wonder why, watch the last five seconds of the video, and weep.)," the "Desiring God" author wrote.

Alan Noble, co-founder and editor of Christ & Pop Culture also wrote recently about the issue, begging the question of whether it is truly necessary to boycott the corporation.

"By boycotting Burger King for this lame promotion, evangelicals are validating it as a legitimate political and social statement instead of a cheap and tactless co-opting of the LGBT movement for profit," Noble states. "Most of all, focusing on silly faux-political/moral 'stands' like Burger King's only distracts us from richer and more edifying work."

He continues:

"There are times and places when boycotts and buycotts are appropriate, certainly, but the way in which they have become the default method of public discourse and social advocacy is troubling," Noble wrote. "The Church has richer and more effective means of prophetically speaking, through preaching, service, and modeling an alternative to the world's order; I hope we begin to use them more."