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August 8, 2012

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Mark,

Excellent points! I'm not sure any of this is new. Back when Woolworth's was denying blacks a seat at the lunch counter, that was CSR as practiced back then--preserving social hierarchies even at the expense of short term profits.

Fortunately, most of the time wealth creation leads to greater moral sympathy, which is both progressive and egalitarian.

The Chick-fil-A situation is different because it goes against this rising tide of sympathy for gays. I predict that in 20 years or less Chick-fil-A will be offering partner benefits and will offer apologies for its past behavior.

Exactly--and let's hope!

Don't forget that the excuses of Woolworth's et al. at the time was that they were merely exercising their institutional conscience. This sort of spin is a common bludgeon in the hands of established power.

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