By Annie Hollenbeck
Originally published on Advocate.com June 18 2014 1:13 PM ET
U.S. representative Aaron Schock is eating his Wheaties — or maybe his words — after tweeting a photo of himself on the iconic breakfast cereal box. The custom-made box, presented to Schock by the Obesity PAC did not, as Schock assumed, imply that General Mills had partnered with the PAC.
“Campaign @ToEndObesity partnered with General Mills to promote healthy living. How funny is this!?!! #ihavearrived,” tweeted the congressman.
General Mills, however, quickly responded to the alleged partnership, tweeting, “Just a reminder, anyone can order a custom box from our site, shop.wheaties.com.”
Schock has been a strong opponent of LGBT rights since he entered Congress in 2009. He has received a 0 percent rating from the Human Rights Campaign in his first term and has voted against the inclusion of sexual orientation in hate-crimes law. He also opposed the repeal of “don't ask, don't tell” and the Defense of Marriage Act and has called for a federal constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
Meanwhile, General Mills has been working to cement itself as a company that is outwardly supportive of LGBT rights and its workers. The Minnesota-based company condemned that state's proposed ballot initiative to ban same-sex marriage and has voiced its support for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. According to the Human Rights Campaign, the company is among the most LGBT-friendly major businesses in the country. In addition, General Mills recently celebrated the start of LGBT Pride Month with a new #LuckyToBe social media campaign to promote diversity and acceptance.
The Wheaties box has been an homage to great athletes for decades, although it has yet to feature an openly gay athlete as an individual.