A Big Hat Tip to Opus#6 at American Perspective.

Opus said it so eloquently I will use her words to tell the story.

I was at the auto body shop today getting my car fixed, when the owner told me that State Farm Insurance continues to not send them business because they supported Proposition 8/traditional marriage 4 years ago.  Talk about holding a grudge!

I looked around and found a gay website that warns people off a whole list of companies that support traditional marriage. I thought we had better know who they are so we can send business their way:

A-1 Self Storage Company: Terry Caster is the owner. It is a family (third generation) run company. They have over 40 locations in California. The Californians Against Hate blog reports: “Mr. Caster and his family have contributed $693,000 to the Protect Marriage campaign. That makes the Casters the 2nd largest individual donors to Yes on Prop 8.” [GuyDads]

AutoZone Inc: Does not offer domestic partner benefits to their employees. The company can discriminate against and exclude same-sex couples in ways they can’t do to opposite-sex (married) couples. A Fortune 500 company. [HRC buyers guide]

CBRL Group Inc. (Cracker Barrel restaurants) Operates 579 full-service Cracker Barrel restaurants and gift shops in 41 states. The business has a long history of discriminating against gays and blacks, both as employees and dinners. It had an HR policy from 1991 until 2002 that said “It is inconsistent with our concept and values, and is perceived to be inconsistent with those of our customer base, to continue to employ individuals in our operating units whose sexual preferences fail to demonstrate normal heterosexual values.” Seventeen workers were fired because they admitted or were assumed to be gay after the first few months that the policy was created. [Wikipedia] A spokesperson in 2008 said Cracker Barrel “welcomes all guests, and our equal opportunity employment statement clearly states that we will not tolerate discrimination based on sexual orientation.” However, it does not offer diversity training, domestic partner benefits or any support for their GLBT employees. It has a Corporate Equality Index score of 15/100. [HRC]

Chick-Fil-A: (fast-food restaurant chain) Provided monetary (almost $2M) and in-kind donations directly and through it’s charitable arm, the WinShape Foundation, to virtually all of the major organizations fighting against marriage equality and GLBT rights. These groups include the Marriage & Family Legacy Fund, a group devoted to opposing same-sex marriage, Focus On The Family, The Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the Family Research Council, and Exodus International. [Change.org]

Cinemark: Alan Stock, Cinemark’s CEO, gave $9,999 to the “Yes on 8” (Protectmarriage.com) campaign. Cinemark has 2700 movie screens in North and South America. In northern California they mainly operate under Century, CinéArts and Cinedome name. [GuyDads]

Dish Network: Company shareholders recently (6/08) shot down a proposal that would bar the company from discriminating against employees based on their sexual orientation. Dish Network also chooses not to carry LGBT cable networks Logo and Here! [Queers United] NOTE: as of 5/09 Dish HD customers can get Logo.

Domino’s Pizza: While Domino’s does not directly contribute to anti-gay activity, founder Tom Monaghan has contributed heavily to initiatives and organizations that oppose the rights of GLBTs. He is a co-founder of the Thomas More Law Center, which is advocating in court to restrict access to domestic partner benefits, and in 2001 financed a ballot proposal in Ypsilanti, MI to remove sexual orientation from that city’s non-discrimination ordinance. David Brandon, the current board chair, also opposes gay marriage. The current CEO, Patrick Doyle, donates to conservative and Republican causes which are known for their anti-gay stances. [RedeyeChicago]

ExxonMobil: Eliminated domestic-partner benefits for same-sex partners when the two companies merged in 1999. It is the largest Fortune 500 company that does not offer domestic-partner benefits. It also refuses to ban discrimination based on orientation and gender identity. [HRC buyers guide]

Gold’s Gym is another company that betrays LGBT people. It has a huge gay membership and markets itself as gay-friendly. But the billionaire CEO that owns Gold’s Gym, Robert Rowling, is a major supporter of a new political organization, American Crossroads, run by Karl Rove. Rowling reportedly gave them $2 million through both his corporate and personal accounts. The organization funds anti-gay candidates around the country such as Sharon Angle who said homosexuality would lead to the destruction of the United States, and called gay people “sodomites” and “perverts.” Another recipient was Rep. Roy Blunt in Missouri, who has voted against the Employment Nondiscrimination Act (ENDA), in favor of a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, and is in favor of banning gay adoptions in Washington, D.C. [Change.org]

Golfland Entertainment Centers: The Kenneys, the family that owns and runs this business, were big donors to the “Yes on H8”. Together they contributed over $35,000 to take rights away from gays, lesbians and their families. They run a chain of family fun centers in California and Arizona. [GuyDads]

Insure.com (online insurance quote-comparison portal): The Company is a major sponsor of Bill O’Reilly’s radio talk show and Bill gives voice to their commercial. In addition to selling insurance, they provide information about the insurance industry. In an article on the business website entitled “Top five ways to kill yourself and get away with it”, They lists the number one way to kill yourself: “1. Being gay.” [boxturtlebullentin.com]

Meijer Inc. (Retail supercenter) Owns 180 huge grocery and general merchandise stores in the Midwest. It is a family owned business. The only good thing to be said about Meijer is “they don’t engage, that we know of, in any activity that would undermine the goals of equal rights for GLBT people,” said Jay Smith Brown, a previous HRC director for communication strategies. It has a very low Corporate Equality Index score of 15/100. It does not offer diversity training, domestic partner benefits or any support for their GLBT employees. [HRC]

OutsidePride.com: Sounds like gay banner website but, in fact, is an on-line seed and lawn care retailer. Troy Hake, the president of Outside Pride, sent a homophobic manifesto to the participants of his company’s email list, trying to rally them in a full-on campaign against “the whole CBS homosexual cartel”. He says he is not a bigot but is tired of homosexuals rewriting history. [The Consumerist]

Request Foods: A frozen-food maker and supplier to Campbell’s Soup works hard to keep civil rights away from gays and lesbians in their community. In a political ad they ran to defeat a local nondiscrimination policy, they accuse gay people of being psychologically disordered, suggest that people can spontaneously change their sexual orientation, and argue that gays and lesbians don’t deserve civil rights because homosexuality is destructive to society. Request Foods president Jack DeWitt has also contributed thousands to the hate group Family Research Council’s political action committee. [Change.org]

Salvation Army: This “non-profit” religious organization is anti-gay and actively lobbies against pro-gay legislation in the US and abroad. The money you put in that red kettle is going to anti-gay evangelical Christian lobbyists. They believe that since they’re a “church” they have the right to not hire gay people because they are sinners. Salvation Army reserves the right to discriminate in hiring, promoting, and firing gay people, and in the benefits they provide their employees. And they come right out and admit that “practicing homosexuals” are not welcome in the “church.” [americablog.com]

Urban Outfitters: Richard Hayne, the Chairman of the hipsterish Urban Outfitters, is a notably right-wing Republican who generously supports GOP candidates and causes that vote for legislation against gay marriage. His company also operates stores under Free People and Anthropologie name. NOTE: Glen Senk, the CEO of the parent company, Urban Outfitters, Inc., is an openly gay man who has been in a committed relationship for over 30 years. However, Richard Hayne is still the founder and current chairman and does indeed have a record for supporting right-wing Republicans who are against abortion and gay rights. [NYMag]

Wal-Mart Stores Inc.: Does not offer domestic partner benefits except in locations required by law. Wal-Mart is the largest retail seller of books but refuses to carry any LGBT titles in their stores. [HRC buyers guide] However, they do sell an “ex-gay” children’s book. [Edge] Wal-Mart CEO Mike Duke and his wife signed petitions to ban adoption for same-sex couples in Arkansas. [KnowThyNeighbor.org]

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