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VIDEO UPDATE: Chick-fil-A Northridge in the Eye of Same-Sex Marriage Storm

Restaurant supporters wave American Flags at Northridge eatery.

Dozens of people waved signs and American flags outside a Northridge restaurant Wednesday as part of a national effort to support the chain that came under fire when its chief executive spoke out against same-sex marriage.

But a rally opposing the company brought more protesters to its Hollywood location.

The comments by of the restaurant and even some talk of banning the chain from opening franchises in some cities.

In Laguna Hills last week, nearly three dozen people attended the grand opening of a Chick-fil-A location, many carrying signs with messages such as "Eat Mor Equality" and "Will God Judge Me for Loving or Judge You for Hating?"

But protesters in Northridge Wednesday said they support Cathy's right to free speech.

"He disagrees with same-sex marriage," Deborah Leigh told CBS2. "Most of the people here do too. We're about freedom of speech and think he was ... targeted because he truthfully told his opinion on something."

Another protester told the station, "Whether he believes in traditional marriage or not, he has the right to that opinion."

Similar rallies were held at locations around the country as part of a movement called "Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day," which was declared by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.

"Banning a business from cities around the country because of their political opinion is un-American, and it is not freedom and it is not liberty," one of the Northridge protesters told KCBS2. "This is supposed to be a free country."

Chick-fil-A issued a statement noting that it did not organize Wednesday's events, but said the company appreciates "all of our customers and are glad to serve them at any time."

To counter the support drives, dozens of protesters descended on a Chick- fil-A in Hollywood to blast Cathy's stance on same-sex marriage.

"The gay and lesbian community, LGBT community, is one that's been persecuted for a long time," one protester told KABC7. "... I think it's time that they got the opportunity to get the rights that they deserve."

"Those kind of messages and that kind of rhetoric is very, very hurtful to our families," another protester told the station. "You know, we have families. We have children. We have parents."

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Roger Mason August 01, 2012 at 09:37 PM
I was there at noon. There were several hundred people waiting in two lines with the streets blocked with cars. I took pictures. Quite different than the dozen people you are reporting.
cbardelli August 02, 2012 at 02:03 PM
I came by twice last night at 6:30 and again at 9:30 the parking was so full you could not park, people who had stood in line had been there for 2 hours, People who were waiting on the street had been there an hour and weren't even close to the restaurant at 9:30. I've watched all the reports in LA and it seems as though its not fairly reported - a few people are shown supporting, and more are showed not supporting Chick-Fil-A. I love how people talk about "Religious Agenda and Persecution" However, they have never taken a moment to read Gods written word (obviously) and they claim persecution on them while they picket food chains were the owner simply expressed his beliefs after being asked a question. Mr. Cathy has never hidden his beliefs, and all the sudden its a big deal. The news media is politically swayed and always has been, very obvious in the reporting.
Helen S. Murphy August 02, 2012 at 03:46 PM
People have a right to express their beliefs. I heard Chick-Fil-A has great food. I've been out of town, but I want to try it.
Dannielle Huxley August 02, 2012 at 06:23 PM
Mr. Cathy's remarks regarding same sex marriage will not stop me from eating at his restaurants. His food does that. I've tried it twice and was disappointed twice. That was enough for me -- Just a heads up, Helen. As for the people "supporting his right to free speech," that's a little lame. I haven't seen a single person trying to take away his right to say what he wants. The constitution grants that right. It does NOT, however, grant the right to zero repercussions. It doesn't ensure others will agree with you nor does it take away their rights to speak back, protest or boycott. These people, I think, don't understand the first amendment.
Joseph August 02, 2012 at 07:48 PM
@Helen I hadn't eaten at CFA until yesterday. One mans personal opinion is that I will no longer settle for Carl's, McD or other chicken sandwiches. Before I had left I bought lunch for the following day. I am not claiming "the best in the world" but like I said above no more BK or Wendy's for me.

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