SLC Chick-fil-A Goes Own Way | Hits & Misses | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

SLC Chick-fil-A Goes Own Way 

Also: Olympic Fails, Ikea Solar Power

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Go His Own Way
You really have to feel the pain of Eric Champeau, who runs the Sugar House Chick-fil-A and probably wants to distance himself as far as possible from his homophobic corporate boss. He told Q Salt Lake that he didn’t like being pulled into politics and, in fact, has gay employees and runs an inclusive business. Wonder if the company’s president, Dan Cathy, knows that? Cathy ignited a firestorm around the issue when he said he supports the so-called biblical definition of marriage and is, well, anti-gay. His statements prompted the Human Rights Campaign to begin a boycott of Chick-fil-A locations around the country. That doesn’t bode well for Champeau, whose corporate fees have suddenly become politically charged. Even his support of local Boy Scout troops, which now ban gays, has come under the microscope. Still, you have to give him credit for articulating inclusiveness.

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Olympic Fails
The London Olympics have brought Utahns all manner of amusement, from presidential hopeful Mitt Romney’s diplomatic gaffs to NBC’s bad geography. Then, of course, there’s the tape delay of races whose outcomes are all over Twitter and even in ads aired before events, and NBC’s dropping of the tribute to victims of the July 7, 2005, London bombings from the opening ceremonies. You can start with Mitt, who takes total credit for the 2002 Salt Lake Olympic Games and kind of dissed London, whose newspapers then dubbed him “Mitt the Twit.” Then NBC’s Olympics page noted that Australia is in land-locked central Europe. And curiously, an interview with (losing) swimmer Michael Phelps took the place of the 7/7 tribute. NBC: Now Broadcasting Crap.

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Sunny Side
Ikea just finished installing the state’s largest solar-energy system at its Draper location. It says something that the furniture retailer is willing to invest in photovoltaic technology and make a long-term commitment to its sustainability. All this comes at a time when the federal government has identified three Utah sites as having good potential for solar development. One problem is that those sites in remote areas lack transmission capability, unlike Ikea, which sits in urban Salt Lake County. Someone has to be willing to put up money to build transmission lines. OK, it’s expensive, but so is nuclear power, which seems to have garnered some state support and private investment. So, rather than focus on taking control of public lands, the state might invest in making solar power viable on those lands.

Twitter: @KathyBiele

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