Topic: Media Research Center
When is telling the truth a smear? When someone reports accurately on the political activities of a fast-food chain.
The headline on Gabriel Hays' April 1 Media Research Center post blared, "NY Airport Bans Chick-Fil-A Over Malicious ThinkProgress Smear." What was that "smear"? ThinkProgress accurately reported that Chick-fil-A Chick-fil-A donated $1.8 million in 2017 to organizations like the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and Salvation Army, as well as to other anti-gay organizations, and the airport in Buffalo, N.Y., declined to allow a Chick-fil-A restaurant based on that reporting.
Accurate reporting that has consequences? That will not do for Hays, who went into a frothing rant:
Another airport has just banned Chick-Fil-A from setting up shop on account of the fast food chain’s financial ties with Christian groups. Buffalo, New York’s regional airport just followed a San Antonio airport’s lead in being delusional enough to trust the judgment of crazy lefty outlet ThinkProgress and banned Chick-Fil-A on account of their supposed anti-LGBTQ discrimination.
ThinkProgress wrote about the latest installment of #boycottChickFilA with all the smugness of someone who just cheated their way to victory and got away with it -- which is, of course, what the outlet’s crazed lefty journalists did. They claimed the company promoted “anti gay positions” via donations to Christian non-profits and now more pencil-necked lawmakers feel the need to embrace the petty outrage game.
“Setback?” How cute. To think that a boycott by a few deranged progressives will slow down Chick-Fil-A’s momentum is absurd. How delicious will it be when these people are found to be discriminating against the proud Christian chain for its religious affiliation?
For those of you counting at home, that four whacked-out attacks on ThinkProgress in three paragraphs: two variations of "crazy," one reference to "deranged," and a claim that it "cheated their way to victory and got away with it."
Hays then rushed to Chick-fil-A's defense, denying it was targeting the LGBT community with the donations, and besides, the company can donate to anyone it wants:
Chick-Fil-A feels that it has every right to donate to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and Salvation Army, for example. Still, ThinkProgress spun the negativity, claiming that the franchise’s donation of “$1.8 million in 2017” to such Christian groups amounts to an attack on LGBTQ rights. Yes, these groups believe in traditional marriage, but that is their prerogative as well as it’s Chick-Fil-A’s. It also certainly doesn’t mean that LGBTQ employees or customers are in Chick-Fil-A’s crosshairs.
It’s just heavy spin to destroy a political enemy and, in the case of the ThinkProgress-inspired San Antonio Chick-Fil-A ban, investigations are underway to prove it was an unfair hitjob.
Spinning things in order to destroy a political enemy? Isn't that what Hays is trying to do to ThinkProgress here?
This is not the first meltdown Hays has had over accurate reporting. When the San Antonio airport similarly declined to allow Chick-fil-A a slot over the donations a couple weeks earlier, Hays declared that the company is "Jesus-loving" and "may actually believe in biology," then reframed the anti-LGBT stance of evangelical Christians in order to portray them as victims: "Traditional Christians tend to stick with the belief that homosexuality is not an optimal life choice, so of course LGBTQ groups want them wiped off the map -- even at the expense of free speech or freedom of religion." Hays also claimed ThinkProgress was engaged in "bullying" by, yes, accurately reporting the company's anti-LGBT leanings.