Student Groups Shut Down Chick-Fil-A Proposal

(Katarina Marschhausen/The Observer).

News Co-Editor

For now, members of the Fordham community will not “Eat Mor Chikin.” Following push back from clubs and independent students over LGBTQ issues and menu offerings, the university has opted to decline an Aramark proposal to install a Chick-Fil-A in the Ram Cafe.

The proposal, initially discussed in early March, included renovating the grill area, or Urban Kitchen, to house a Chick-Fil-A. The hot entree station, or Cloverleaf, would have remained in place.

The student groups that were consulted in responding to the proposal were the United Student Government (USG), the Commuter Students Association (CSA), the Residence Hall Association (RHA) and the Rainbow Alliance.

The Rainbow Alliance was consulted in the decision-making process because of a controversy regarding Chick-Fil-A’s stance on LGBTQ issues that has been stirred up to varying degrees since 2012. That year, the family that owns the fast food chain made public statements against marriage equality, a stance backed up by several million dollars in donations they have made over the years to organizations working actively against same-sex marriage. When the chain opened their first location in New York in 2015, they faced protests on the issue.

Representatives from Chik-Fil-A offered to collaboratively run unspecified programming with the Rainbow Alliance in conjunction with the rollout of a venue on campus. Due to continued concerns regarding this issue, however, the Rainbow Alliance unanimously voted against the proposal. Several students independently reached out to USG to voice their concerns, according to then-USG president Leighton Magoon, Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) ’17.

“If they want to bring in Chick-Fil-A, they can bring in Chick-Fil-A,” Renata Francesco, FCLC ’19 and Rainbow Alliance Co-President, said. “But we’re not going to partner with an institution, a corporation that has so strongly supported other institutions that work to destabilize and demolish movements for queer equity.”

When resistance to the proposal started to gain steam, the USG executive board began to reconsider if USG was okay with having a Chick-Fil-A on campus, said Magoon. Over spring break, they were informed that the university had declined the proposal and that Aramark would no longer pursue the installation of a Chick-Fil-A.

Francesco said that she was surprised about this decision, because of “Fordham’s recent handling of major queer issues on campus, most notably the hesitation and denial to create trans-inclusive spaces.” The Observer reported on issues facing trans students on campus in a recent issue.

“Part of me is hopeful that they’ll start taking this attitude of listening to queer students and queer voices, because there are so many on this campus and just in life,” she said. “I really do hope this is a step, as opposed to just a final ‘Oh we’ll do this, we’ll give them that,’ as a way to placate us. But we were very happy with the decision.”

Students also had concerns with Chick-Fil-A’s menu options, according to Dining Services Contract Liaison Deming Yaun.

“Certainly, there were some menu concerns as it related to special diets that Chick-Fil-A did not have a lot to offer for,” Yaun said. “They didn’t have a lot to address special diets.”

Additionally, the proposal process revealed that any instillation of a national chain in the Ram Cafe would also necessitate a total revamp of the hot entree Cloverleaf station.

“What came out was that Cloverleaf cannot stand on it own against a national brand really of any kind,” Yaun said. “So we were off replacing one format, but it’s really got to be a comprehensive change involving the whole line.”

Regarding the concerns that students had, Yaun stated that “if we were to try again, we would make sure that everyone that was in the decision process heard the presentations” that the representatives from Chick-Fil-A gave during the proposal process. As of now, there are no alternative plans being discussed to install a national chain in the Ram Cafe in light of the decision on the proposal.

While the leaders of the Rainbow Alliance see the rejection of Chick-Fil-A as a step in the right direction, they say that it is only a “tiny step.”

“This is something that I don’t want to congratulate Fordham for, like ‘Oh my god, I’m so glad that you can see this. You’re such a good person,’” said Rainbow Alliance co-president Roberta Munoz. “I don’t want to pat them on the back. You can’t say ‘Oh you’re such a great ally’ when there’s still so many issues with our queer students. Like great, love it, but keep going.”


  1. Catholics don’t kowtow to the LGBTQ community, so why the wilt? Pathetic acquiescence from the school, rotten leadership.

  2. My alma mater, Fordham University , is no longer a Catholic institution . It is an independent school affiliated with the Jesuits. Do not blame the Catholic Church blame the liberal Jesuits. They have a lot to answer for, caving into political correctness. They have lost their way. Pray for them. M.

  3. Where is the Catholic Church leadership?? Why are they allowing a group of students who live a lifestyle in violation of the church’s doctrine to speak for them??? Groups like this student group are always calling for tolerance and acceptance…. WHAT A BUNCH OF HYPOCRITES! They spout more hatred and intolerance towards those who disagree with them. Guess what? Marriage has been BETWEEN MAN AND WOMAN for thousands of years – since the beginning of time. deal with it……..and no, I’m not homophobic or intolerant. I just don’t believe in twisting science or history to suit an interest group’s purposes. we were going to cook dinner, but now we will be going to Chick Fil a tonight. And we will be frequenting them from now on.

  4. Fordham is not a Catholic university. If you are looking for one, I recommend one faithful to the Magisterium. Would be embarrassing, if it were not for the line of Jesuit schools that act 10 times more preposterously. Save your money, Catholics, but not your prayers. Fordham and the Jesuits need them badly.

  5. The only ones pedaling ‘hate’ are the LGBTXYZ perverts.

    WTF are they even doing at a Jesuit school?

  6. Too bad that there is no tolerance in any activist communities anymore. When they asked for tolerance they received more than they ever dreamed but now that they have the cultural upper hand, they act more like socialist dictators than the tolerant open minded people that they pretend to be. One more example of why you should never give in to bullies.

  7. Oh, that reminds me to go to Chick-Fil-A for lunch! Thanks, LGBTQers, for the reminder! Support Chick-Fil-A! 🙂

  8. If the university can’t control these clowns to stay within Catholic teaching, they should both be expelled. For evaluations of real Catholic colleges check with The Cardinal Newman Society.

    BTW, the former head of Chick-fil-A is long dead. This is just an excuse for these folks who never read 1 Corinthians 10 to dive further into their own hell.

  9. Weird, crazy. Why is the Rainbow alliance being allowed to dictate terms to everyone else ? Why not a student – staff vote ?
    Can anyone give a factual example of Chick Fila discriminating against anyone ? I have always had pleasant experiences there: courteous helpful employees and good food. A few misguided people should not spoil things for everyone else.

  10. I don’t agree with the positions of Rainbow and USG and that will be reflected in my usual annual support of the Fordham Fund.

  11. What a bunch of intolerant morons. On top of all of this, an allegedly Catholic university should be pretty open in its opposition to same-sex “marriage”!

  12. Here’s the agenda –
    Demanding tolerance gave way to demanding recognition which gave way to demanding equality which is now giving way to demanding superiority. So much for the Stonewall excuse that all they wanted was to be “left alone”.

    Christians are under attack by the homosexual community for speaking out on the Biblical principle that homosexuality is sin. Gay fascists won’t be satisfied until they’ve silenced every opposition – especially true born again Bible believing Christians.

    Examine evidence where Christianity is being intimidated through bullying, threats, intimidation, laws or lawsuits – Christian business owners who are approached by gay couples trying to force them into compromising their beliefs and then suing them when they won’t…gays picketing churches who’s ministers preach that homosexuality is a sin.

    How about all the angry talk from gays even after the Supreme Court decision proved that the judicial branch of government is now in the law making business ?

    And now, transvestites want to be able to choose which bathroom they want to use – and the government wants you to think it’s “normal”…

    It’s happening more and more – so it’s not just about “equal rights” anymore. it’s about eradicating any ideology that disagrees with homosexuality – especially Bible believing Christians standing on Biblical principles.

    Homosexuality is a behavior,…not something that needs to be “protected” with special legal rights. The ones who need “protection” are Christians under attack by the intolerant bigoted homosexual community for speaking out on the Biblical principle that homosexuality is sin.

    I keep trying to tell you, it IS an agenda and NOT about “tolerance”…and the escalating gay bathroom “equal rights” movement just proves my point very nicely, thank you.

  13. At the end of the LGBT etc rainbow there is a pot, but not of gold. It’s filled with the same smelling substance sodomites have on themselves after they violate nature in a sexual act. LGBT behavior is ungodly. Groups and organizations exist with the basis of that behavior which has a world view that has an anti-christian world view agenda. America was birth’d from the Christian World View. No other world view could have given the Declaration and the Constitution. From them came our freedom and liberty. The cultural Marxist know this and are succeeding in destroying the Christian inheritance, they control these LGBT organizations. Destroy this basis of historical traditional American identity and the communist win. Giving in to their diabolical demands is a true reflection of how we do not love and serve the Almighty God of the Judeo-Christian scriptures. You can’t protect and fight for something you no longer cherish and believe in. Acting tolerant of evil is not a virtue, it’s an act of cowardly fear to stand up for righteousness. Its the result and consequence of being evil and corrupted yourself. You have no convictions to stand up and be counted in fighting back against diabolical evil that wants to destroy you, your biblical marriages and family, your institutions, and your national identity. The church is flabby and weak. Not acquainted with the bible. Ignorant of doctrine. Most wouldn’t know where to open the bible to if you gave them a passage of scripture to look up. They have no faith that is strong enough for them to stand up for their convictions if they even have any of what is right or wrong. The wicked shall be turned into hell and all the nations which have forgotten Almighty God of the bible.

  14. Great comment Katy. I remember where and when I enjoyed my first Chick-fil-A sandwich. I was visiting some very good friends while traveling and a Jewish family member bought me my first chicken Chick-fil-A sandwich which he claimed was the best he had tasted and which I enjoyed immensely. I now stop a Chick-fil-A’s whenever and wherever I can.

  15. The Church and those within should refrain from banning patrons from morally correct dining facilities and seek to preserve souls instead.

  16. I chose to attend a Catholic University because it supposedly stood for CATHOLIC values. Apparently I wasted my money.

  17.   Why does a group that is openly hostile to Catholic moral values, and which promotes behavior that is overtly immoral, get any say at all in what food services will be available on a catholic-owned institution?

  18. 1 Cor 10:25 (NABRE)
    “Eat anything sold in the market, without raising questions on grounds of conscience,”

  19. A restaurant whose owner holds values aligned with those officially held by the Church’s is rejected at a Catholic university….? Spineless.