updated - May 21, 2013 Tuesday EDT
Several Chick-Fil-A's around the country had lines of customers waiting to place an order as many stepped in to support the company, after Chick-Fil-A came under fire for its opposition to gay marriage.
On Facebook, more than 618,000 people said they were taking part in the "Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day" organized by former Arkansas governor and Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee.
"The goal is simple: Let's affirm a business that operates on Christian principles and whose executives are willing to take a stand for the Godly values we espouse by simply showing up and eating at Chick-fil-A," Huckabee, a former Arkansas governor and current Fox News Channel personality, said on his website.
Chick-Fil-A: More CEO's, Politicians Take Stand On Gay Marriage
The uproar began when Chick-Fil-A's president and Dan CEO Cathy, told the Biblical Recorder, a Baptist journal, in early July that the company was "very much supportive of the family - the biblical definition of the family unit." In a radio interview in June, Cathy said, "I think we are inviting God's judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at him and say, 'We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage.'"
"We are very much supportive of the family - the biblical definition of the family unit," Cathy said. "We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that."
Former GOP presidential hopeful Rick Santorum, Dallas megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress and former Alaska governor and vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin joined in, urging their supporters to give Chick-fil-A their business. Dozens of photos posted to Twitter on Wednesday showed Chick-fil-A locations packed with people or lines out the door.
On the other end of the debate, same-sex couples plan to stage a kiss-in at Chick-fil-A restaurants around the U.S. on Friday.
Gay marriage supporters have responded by calling for a boycott of the chain and seeking to block new Chick-fil-A outlets from opening. Same-sex couples around the country plan a kiss-in at Chick-fil-A restaurants on Friday.
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