Stop & Shop: Stop carrying anti-gay pasta

UPDATE: After a remarkable worldwide campaign by consumers and LGBT activists to boycott his family's pasta company, Guido Barilla issued a second apology via video on the company's website and pledged to meet with LGBT organizations.

Since the response from LGBT people and allies in 2013, several media outlets have noted that Barilla has completed a turnaround and done work internally and externally to support LGBT people and families. The Huffington Post gave Barilla the title of 'Most Improved' in a list of five companies that go 'above and beyond for the LGBT community.' You can check out Barilla's work to show support for LGBTQ youth on #SpiritDay here

From September 26, 2013: Barilla pasta head Guido Barilla recently said, “I would never do an advert with a homosexual family…if the gays don’t like it they can go an eat another brand." Following Barilla's comments, Linda Ferraro, an Italian-American mom, has launched a petition calling on Stop & Shop to stop carrying Barilla pasta.

As an Italian-American mom, some of my favorite memories are of sitting around the dinner table with my husband and our three sons on Sunday after Church. Lots of tomato sauce, lots of laughs and lots of Barilla. In fact, there are several boxes of Barilla sitting in my cabinet right now. That is about to change.

My grandparents moved to Brooklyn, NY from Italy and taught me that family is more important than anything. I remembered that tradition when my son Rich was a teenager and cried at our dinner table as he told me he was gay.

This morning Rich called me and told me Guido Barilla, the head of Barilla pasta, said terrible things about gay people like him. Barilla said, “I would never do an advert with a homosexual family…if the gays don’t like it they can go an eat another brand. For us the concept of the sacred family remains one of the fundamental values of the company.” I have a newsflash for Guido Barilla: I am proud of my gay son and we are a traditional family.

Even though my sons are adults now, no one messes with any of my boys. I shop at Stop & Shop, and now that I dumped Barilla, I think they should, too. Please join me and urge Stop & Shop to take Barilla off their shelves.

Linda Ferraro