A businessman lost his job and his home after posting a viral video excoriating a Chick-fil-A clerk over gay marriage opinions voiced by an officer of the restaurant chain.
More than two years after the video’s publication, Adam Smith, 37, his wife and four kids are now living in a camper and subsisting on food stamps, according to ABC News.
Smith was the chief financial officer of an Arizona medical device manufacturing firm when he recorded himself in the drive-thru lane of a local Chick-fil-A.
After receiving the free bottle of water he ordered, Smith lambasted the chain as “a hateful corporation,” before dressing down the server.
“I don’t know how you live with yourself and work here,” he told the woman during a one-minute tirade. “I don’t understand it.”
The video immediately went viral, turning Smith into an overnight star. But it wasn’t the sort of publicity his employer was looking for.
“I got into work, and the receptionist, the first thing, big eyes, ‘Adam, what did you do?’” Smith told ABC News’ “20/20.” “She said, ‘The voicemail is completely full, and it’s full of bomb threats.’”
Smith said he lost his job and everything that went with it, including a $200,000 annual salary and over $1 million in stock options.
“It was taken when I lost my employment,” he told “20/20.”
After losing his home, Smith was able to find a similar position in Portland, Ore. But two weeks later, his new boss realized he was “that guy in the video,” so he lost that job, too, he said.
Apparently, Smith felt strongly about Chick-fil-A Chief Operating Officer Dan T. Cathy’s comments about not believing in gay marriage. He was stating a personal opinion, not company policy, but the comments prompted gay rights activists to protest in droves. Smith appears to be among the offended.
President Obama, by the way, espoused the same traditional marriage views in 2008, but no one has bashed him for it.
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