- (Photo: Reuters/Kimberly White)
A conservative Christian group in Kentucky has called for a boycott of PNC Bank over its support for gay pride events.
Dr. Frank G. Simon, director of the American Family Association of Kentucky, sent out a "Call to Action" on Monday outlining the reasons for boycotting.
"PNC Bank supports and promotes homosexuality by sponsoring Gay Pride Parades and festivals across America, including the Kentuckiana Pride Festival held in Louisville last weekend, June 14-15, 2013," wrote Simon.
"I ask you to join me and give a clear message to PNC Bank – tell them you are boycotting their bank until they agree to remain neutral in the culture war and stop supporting homosexual events."
The usage of boycotts against pro-gay businesses has been performed by both state chapters and the national AFA in the past, including a recent nationwide boycott against Home Depot over its support for same-sex marriage.
Tim Wildmon, president of the national AFA, and Bryan Fischer, director of Issues Analysis at the national AFA, told The Christian Post via email that they support "state affiliates in the decisions they make in their own states, as long, of course, as they're consistent with our mission as an organization."
"The state affiliates are in a better position than we are to determine the situation on the ground and what the best course of action is to defend the family in their own states," wrote Wildmon and Fischer. "The AFA has made effective use of boycotts over the years, and we support our state affiliates when they use that tool at home."
Wildmon and Fischer also told CP that it was unlikely that a nationwide boycott would be made of PNC Bank over its support for LGBT events.
"We reserve our AFA boycotts for business[es] that have a nationwide footprint, such as Home Depot. Since PNC is not in every state, a boycott of PNC makes more sense at the state level," wrote Wildmon and Fischer.
On its website, PNC has a list of the many gay pride events it will be supporting throughout the country both in June and at later dates.
"At PNC, we believe that diversity initiatives make good business sense. We support diversity and inclusion in many ways, including programs that engage our customers, communities, employees and suppliers," reads an entry on the bank's website.
"In June PNC commemorates LGBT Pride Month with a number of community events and sponsorships…"
Kentuckiana Pride Foundation held its annual Pride Festival on June 14-15 in Louisville. In addition to PNC, other corporate sponsors included Humana, Absolut, Bud Light, Ford, UAW-Ford, and Open Door Community Fellowship.
When asked by CP as if they felt boycotts were an intolerant action, Wildmon and Fischer of national AFA responded that it was all about choice.
"We always find it humorous that people who claim to be pro-choice on just about everything get agitated with us when we encourage Americans to be pro-choice about where they spend their consumer dollars," they commented.
"750,000 Americans have made a free and entirely uncoerced decision to no longer shop at Home Depot until it stops promoting same-sex marriage. We can't force anyone to join our boycotts, and wouldn't if we could. This isn't about intolerance, it's about choice."
The Diversity and Inclusion Team at PNC Bank did not return comment to The Christian Post by press time.