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When I criticized Chick-fil-A, some Christians and conservatives sent vile messages

The level of hate, vitriol and misinformation from some Christians and conservatives defending Chick-fil-A is eye-opening.

Los Angeles Holds Annual Gay Pride Parade
The anti-gay vitriol from some Christians and conservatives continues to spread.
Photo by David McNew/Getty Images

Editor’s note: This post contains graphic material that some may find deeply offensive. We include it to bring awareness to the resentment some Christians and conservatives continue to harbor against LGBTQ people, and the danger their language poses to young people.

Last week I posted a column explaining why I wouldn’t watch the Peach Bowl as long as Chick-fil-A was a sponsor of the game. I pointed out that the company’s foundation gives millions of dollars to anti-LGBTQ organizations, most notably the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

Several conservative and Christian publications wrote about my column, falsely discrediting it and its claims, and inciting their followers.

In response I received more than a thousand messages on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and email from Christians and conservatives who didn’t like my take. I guess it was a slow holiday weekend.

While I wasn’t at all surprised by the number of messages that contained misinformation, misdirection or misspellings, I was quite shocked by the vile, graphic and sometimes disgusting language some of these “Christians” and conservatives used to attack me. While sitting on their high horse, they took joy in describing gay sex in the most nasty ways they could think of. One person is even doxxing my husband and me, angry that I dared to speak out against the anti-gay positions and actions of Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

There were, of course, the predictable amount of hate messages saying I’m “mentally ill” because I’m gay, or somehow “unAmerican” because I dared freely express my opinion.

Yet many went so far beyond that.

Twitter has so far suspended three accounts that I reported for using hate speech, including this man who knew what he wanted to say, he just didn’t know how to spell it:

He won’t be posting his hate speech on Twitter any time soon.

Many of the messages were people telling me that if I didn’t like Chick-fil-A or Fellowship of Christian Athletes I should just change the channel... which is exactly what I said I would do in my column (I never advocated for a boycott or for anyone else to do anything). But that fact was lost on some of the brilliant Christian and conservative Tweeters out there.

Some of the messages were just God-fearing Christians and conservatives taunting me. Despite me not advocating anywhere in my piece that anyone forgo eating Chick-fil-A’s delicious sandwiches, they tried to use that as a weapon.

Of course there was the tired, ill-informed, red-herring nonsense about me not believing in free speech, despite me never saying Chick-fil-A and Fellowship of Christian Athletes don’t have the right to say and do whatever they please.

One trend I’ve noticed over the years, and this episode has demonstrated it again, is that many anti-gay people love to graphically describe gay sex when they are attacking gay people. Anti-gay men in particular seem to love describing gay sex to gay men. Calling Dr. Freud!

This email I received from “Mark” reflects someone even more obsessed with gay sex than I am:

So! You’re “married” (sort of, but not really), and your Google picture makes it abundantly clear you take it in the ass (I’m guessing 4 times a week), and you have the nerve to criticize one of the best companies in America simply because it recognizes that fags, lesbians, and transgenders are warped, fucked in the head, deviant, unnatural loads of perverse horseshit who will ultimately burn in the center ring of hell??
My, my, my-- aren’t you overreacting, just a little? Or, maybe, it’s “that time of the month”, and your nervous, jittery, and “... just not myself...”
Just suck on your “husband’s” dick for 15 minutes-- that’ll calm you BOTH down.
Now,...there... don’t you feel a little better?
-------------- Now--- where’s that lubricant...

This email from Billy was certainly a great way to start 2019:

Why don’t you shut the fuck up big mouthed dick head.
Fuck you and your fucking lgbt bullshit
Nobody gives a duck about that garbage
Keep your shitty comments to your self stupid cry baby motherfucker

John loves talking about gay sex too:

Just STFU. Isn’t there a Sodom & Gomorrah Bowl you can watch. ... Put the penis back in your mouth and go back to your happy place and chill a bit.

This gentleman said he is an American war veteran and claimed to be the reason I have Freedom of Speech:

Make no mistake: I’m not publishing here some of the most graphic, vile messages I received from self-proclaimed Christians and conservatives.

All of this was because I wrote a column explaining why I personally wouldn’t watch the Chick-fil-A Bowl. Incredibly offensive.

These responses have highlighted the very reason I take issue with Chick-fil-A’s support of an anti-gay organization like Fellowship of Christian Athletes. It is these attitudes and hateful speech that get stirred by the anti-gay rhetoric FCA puts in its statement of faith. That Chick-fil-A validates FCA’s anti-gay positions, and fuels the hateful fire of a thousand “culture warriors,” reinforces my commitment to continue this work.

I won’t be backing down anytime soon.