American Family Association has ended its five-month boycott
against McDonald's after a company executive resigned from a
gay and lesbian business group, reports the Chicago
Richard Ellis has
stepped down from the board of the National Gay and
Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, and the AFA claims it's because
of the stress it placed on the Oak Brook, Ill.-based
company. The AFA claimed that by participating in the
gay chamber, McDonald's wasn't remaining neutral "in
the cultural war over homosexuality."
But a McDonald's
spokesman says Ellis left the chamber because
he recently left his post as vice president of U.S.
communications for an executive position at McDonald's
in Canada, and the gay chamber is a U.S. association.
Though not officially caving to the AFA, a McDonald's
spokesman distanced the corporation from the gay group.
decision to be a member of the board was a personal
decision, not a company decision," Jack Daly, McDonald's
global chief communications officer, told the
Tribune. Daly added that McDonald's is not a
member of the chamber and that the company, which was
previously a sponsor of the gay group's fund-raising
gala, has no plans to be a sponsor of the event next
According to the
AFA, McDonald's e-mailed franchise owners with the
following message: "It is our policy to not be involved in
political and social issues. McDonald's remains
neutral on same-sex marriage or any 'homosexual
agenda' as defined by the American Family Association."
The AFA's website
carried the message "We appreciate the decision by
McDonald's to no longer support political activity by
homosexual activist organizations. You might want to
thank your local McDonald's manager." (Neal Broverman,