Ice cream company fetes gay marriage

Ben & Jerry???s is temporarily renaming popular ???Chubby Hubby??? ice cream ???Hubby Hubby??? beginning today to celebrate the start of legalized gay marriage in its home state of Vermont.

???The legalization of marriage for gay and lesbian couples in Vermont is certainly a step in the right direction, and something worth celebrating with peace, love – and plenty of ice cream,??? Ben & Jerry???s CEO Walt Freese said in announcing the sugary switch.

Ben & Jerry???s, which has long backed liberal causes, plans to rebrand ???Chubby Hubby??? as ???Hubby Hubby??? for 30 days to show support for Vermont???s new law.

The move is mostly symbolic, as Burlington-based Ben & Jerry???s isn???t changing labels on ???Chubby Hubby??? pints sold in stores.

Spokesman Sean Greenwood said revising product labels takes 18 months, although he said Ben & Jerry???s hasn???t ruled out retailing ???Hubby Hubby??? in the future.

In the meantime, a wedding-themed Ben & Jerry???s truck will hand out free ???Hubby Hubby??? across Vermont today. Scheduled stops include the Vermont Capitol, where lawmakers passed a gay-marriage law that takes effect today.

Ben & Jerry???s six Vermont ice cream parlors also plan to sell special ???Hubby Hubby??? sundaes during September.

Gay-marriage backers see Ben & Jerry???s move as sweet sign of support.

???As we continue to fight for equality, it???s heartening to see businesses like Ben & Jerry???s demonstrate their support,??? said Scott Gortikov of pro-gay-marriage organization MassEquality. ???I look forward to the day when ???Hubby Hubby??? is available in supermarkets in all 50 states.???

But the name change is giving gay-marriage opponents an ice cream headache. ???It???s a bad idea, especially because I think they???re just doing it to rub it in that Vermont has legalized gay marriage,??? said Brian Camenker of MassResistance.org.

A really sweet way celebrate to what is a victory for people who believe that all people should be treated equally. And even if you don’t believe in the cause, It’s damn good ice cream 😀

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