Hundreds of Murrieta residents showed support for the restaurant chain today by celebrating “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day.”
Backing up traffic on Madison Avenue, those waiting in the drive-through and or standing in line were wrapped around the building, with wait times for both at more than an hour.
“I’d wait all day and all night if I had to,” said Murrieta resident Echo Davenport, 62. She and her daughter Sierra, 22, opted for the drive-through and had already been waiting for 30 minutes before they reached the parking lot.
Advocated by former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, now a TV and radio show host, he used his Facebook page to generate support for “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day”.
His outcry came after Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy—son of company founder S. Truett Cathy—responded to a question about the restaurant chain's support of the traditional family in a new interview with the Baptist Press.
Additionally, the Huffington Post, reported the company has been under scrutiny of late for published reports of Chick-fil-A's charitable work that found the fast food chain donated nearly $2 million to anti-gay groups in 2010.
According to the story on Huffington Post, he went on to note, "We are very much supportive of the family—the biblical definition of the family unit…we know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord, we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles.”
Many in attendance agreed.
"It’s not about gay marriage, it’s about the freedom of speech,” said Menifee resident Ray Patterson, 33. He made the trek to support Cathy. “There is no hatred here [at Chick-fil-A]; he never said gays could not eat here, just he believed in traditional marriage."
Mike Rull, 28, also from Menifee, agreed and admires Cathy for his beliefs and the courage to stand by them.
“It’s hard to stand up for what you believe in and harder to stick by it, especially when it’s not popular.”
Although the lines were long, no one minded waiting to show there solidarity to the chain. Friends were made, smiles were seen and supporters chose to let the line speak for itself.
At the time of this posting, no one in attendance was there to protest the event.
Jenny Jones of the Murrieta Chick-fil-A location, refused to comment.