Apple CEO Tim Cook says ‘religious freedom’ laws are dangerous

“Indiana conservatives watched their brethren in state after state approve legislation that, supporters said, was crafted to ensure the religious rights of their citizens. Kansas in 2013, Mississippi in April, and, on Friday, Arkansas,” Sarah Parvini and Nigel Duara report for The Los Angeles Times. “Criticism of new Indiana legislation as discriminatory against gays and lesbians erupted this weekend in a torrent of canceled construction, stalled convention plans and the specter of business leaving the state.”

“Social media focused its ire on the Indiana Statehouse after Republican Gov. Mike Pence signed into law far-reaching freedoms for religious beliefs, protecting those who say their beliefs forbid them from serving same-sex couples. It became the 20th state to pass such legislation and, for some reason, the first one with a target painted on its back for doing so,” Parvini and Duara report. “Pence’s signature, delivered in a private ceremony Thursday, set off a quick series of denouncements from gay rights groups and politicians, even some Indiana Republicans, who question the fallout from the bill’s prohibition against ‘substantially burdening a person’s exercise of religion.'”

“Most often, the friction points are weddings. So far, such legal disputes have centered on photographers and bakers who said it violated their religious beliefs to provide services for same-sex weddings,” Parvini and Duara report. “By Saturday, activists including “Star Trek” actor George Takei were spreading #boycottindiana on Twitter. Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook denounced the law, as did filmmaker Adam McKay.”

Read more in the full article here.

“America’s business community recognized a long time ago that discrimination, in all its forms, is bad for business. At Apple, we are in business to empower and enrich our customers’ lives. We strive to do business in a way that is just and fair. That’s why, on behalf of Apple, I’m standing up to oppose this new wave of legislation — wherever it emerges,” Apple CEO Tim Cook writes in a The Washington Post op-ed. “Our message, to people around the country and around the world, is this: Apple is open. Open to everyone, regardless of where they come from, what they look like, how they worship or who they love. Regardless of what the law might allow in Indiana or Arkansas, we will never tolerate discrimination.”

Read more in the full article here.

Related article:
Tim Cook: Apple ‘deeply disappointed’ with Indiana’s new religious-objections law – March 27, 2015

123 Comments

  1. As many liberal professors have consistently explained, conservative students have their ideas challenged much more in college than liberals do.

    As a result conservatives are forced to exercise critical thinking, and provide fact based proof much more than a liberal does. Tim Cook is gay. He is reacting in a classic liberal knee-jerk, overly emotional fashion. When you calm down, if you ever do, read the actual language of laws, Tim.

    For folks who take such pride in their professed love of diversity, Dem/Lib/Progs certainly do not seem to tolerate even the least bit of diversity that falls outside their own little pool of groupthink.

    From the beginning of their college careers conservatives are put in a position of having to challenge authority. Since they’re put through an intellectual crucible, they tend to put all ideas through that crucible, as that’s how they’ve been taught.

    The liberal student will find success through conformity, and thus will not develop the intellectual muscles to properly challenge authority or the mass culture.

    Tim Cook and Apple are now anti-religious freedom.

    Stay out of politics, Tim, you’re not equipped for it.

      1. The issue with respect to Religious Freedom Restoration Acts (RFRAs) is whether people should be allowed to practice their religion, even when their acts would otherwise be illegal, if they are not doing any real harm. The American tradition of religious liberty has exempted religious practices since the seventeenth century. Quakers in colonial times didn’t have to swear oaths, or serve in the militia.

        Sometimes this is entirely uncontroversial. It is illegal to give alcohol to minors, but no one thinks that law should be applied to communion wine, or seder wine at the Jewish Passover.

        For a time, the federal Free Exercise Clause (part of the First Amendment) required religious exemptions unless the government had a compelling interest in enforcing its regulation. Then in 1990, the Supreme Court changed that rule, and basically said that the free exercise of religion is protected only against discrimination.

        Congress responded with the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act in 1993, creating a statutory right to practice your religion, free of government regulation except where necessary to serve a compelling government interest. That law passed unanimously in the House, and 97-3 in the Senate; Bill Clinton praised it and signed it.

        But in 1997, the Supreme Court said that the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act could not constitutionally be applied to the states. If states wanted to protect religious practice subject to the compelling interest test, they would have to do it themselves. This is the background to why states began enacting their own Religious Freedom Restoration ActsDouglas Laycock, a professor at the University of Virginia Law School

        I invite those of you who are interested in the truth vs. Tim Cook-style knee-jerk disinformation and nonsense propaganda to read more here: UVA Law Prof Who Supports Gay Marriage Explains Why He Supports Indiana’s Religious Freedom Law

        1. Hmmm, so MDN can prevent you from posting cause you violate their religious beliefs?

          Can I refuse to pay my state income tax cause it violates my religious beliefs?

          The key is limits. If you do not like gays, you do not have to shop at their stores. If you have a store, you need to sell to anyone that fits legal requirements (i.e. cigars to minors).

          Other wise its a “I will do whatever I want and you cannot stop me ” situation.

          These Religious freedom laws are not about religious freedom, they are about power and control. PERIOD.

          1. Wrong, you do not HAVE to sell to anyone. For decades I’ve seen signs saying “we reserve the right to refuse service to anyone”, and as the poster above you said, these laws have been on the books in federal and many state laws for years. This is just another attempt to mischaracterize something into a headlines grabbing GLBTQ media opportunity. It is about power and control, but it’s about the GLBTQ attempting to gain power and control over others to make them accept their lifestyle and strip people of religious conviction of their RIGHTS. This law is not new news, just new to Indiana. This is just an attempt to generate free publicity for a political movement.

        2. The ‘freedom’ you are protecting is the freedom to discriminate against gays. That is un-American and unconstitutional. These laws will not stand the test of time.

            1. What makes *me* happy is a nice warm p*ssy. But I still believe that every American is entitled to live his/her life as they please and can go buy a cake for their wedding if that’s what they want.

            2. What about those Americans who do not wish to be FORCED to participate in a gay wedding because their religion says it’s wrong?

              Can they live their life as they please?

              So far in every court case concerning “gays buying a service” the store owner already sold flowers/cakes/etc to these gay people, were friendly with the gay folk, and had absolutely no problem continuing that relationship.

              It was only when asked to participate in the planning, setting up, and actively helping with the implementation of the gay wedding ceremony that they said no.

              And again in each case recommended someone close by who could provide the same service that they were politely refusing.

            3. So selling a gun doesn’t make you responsible for crimes committed with that gun, but selling a cake makes your responsible for the sex lives of the people who eat it?

              You bigotism is showing.

              Stop trying to control or take responsibility for other’s personal choices. They are not your responsibility.

              Maybe we should have a law which puts bigots in jail just for being a bigot, then you will have real discrimination to complain about.

            4. That’s the most bogus comparison ever. If you sell a gun to someone for target shooting and they buy ammo, etc. multiple times, but then one day a customer comes to you and says “i need some ammo for hunting unicorns”, and your religion happens to forbid hunting or killing unicorns, then you obviously would not want to participate in enabling that behavior. In your mind you become guilty by being knowingly complicit in assisting someone in an act that you feel is morally wrong. You don’t “hate” them, you just don’t want to participate.

              These people are not trying to take control or responsibility for the gay couple’s life or actions, they just don’t want to participate in them. The only people trying to control someone in the Oregon case is the gay couple. Sorry, but the baker just didn’t want to participate, they weren’t trying to control anything.

              You’ve done a remarkable job in trying to turn this whole thing on its head, I’m not sure if you really believe what you write, or if you simply are using this as a free media moment of the LGBTQ political movement. Maybe if they could just leave people alone and not try to FORCE them to participate in their life choices then everyone could live and let live?

    1. You do not cite one piece of evidence to refute Mr. Cook’s editorial. Instead, you simply resort to the tired “Dem/Lib/Progs” ad hominem attacks.

      While I rarely agree with him, Thelonius Mac at least delivers a cooherent thoughtful analysis virtually each and every time. You just spout the same tired dogma.

      As for your last comment, I think there’s lots of evidence that Tim is pretty good at politics…

      1. The issue here is: is tolerance a two-way street or not? There’s a lot of talk about tolerance in this country having to do with people on the left. Here Indiana steps forward to protect the constitutional rights and privileges of freedom of religion for people of faith in our state, and this avalanche of intolerance that’s been poured on our state is outrageous. — Indiana Governor Mike Pence

      2. Indiana’s RFRA does not grant a license to discriminate. First of all, the state of Indiana, like 28 other states, has never prohibited discrimination based on sexual orientation at public accommodations. Even without such laws in most states, discrimination doesn’t commonly occur because the United States is a nation that is tolerant of gay people and intolerant of bigots. Mean-spirited actions by a business owner anywhere in the country would almost certainly be met with a major backlash.

        It is true that several local ordinances in Indiana prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, but RFRA does not declare that those ordinances are invalid if someone requests a religious exemption. Again, RFRA simply establishes the balancing test courts must apply in religious freedom cases.

        As Stanford’s Michael McConnell told me last year, RFRA laws haven’t yet collided with public accommodation laws. But what if they do? “For the most part, I think the public accommodation laws are going to win out,” McConnell said. “But I could imagine a circumstance where you have somebody renting out a bedroom in their house, and they have children they’re trying to bring up in a particular way, and there would be some very specific conflict with their religion that I could imagine. If the couple could go anywhere and it’s no real interference with their ability to find housing–these cases are just not all one way or the other. They depend powerfully on the particular circumstance.”

        The point of RFRA is not to discriminate against gay Americans. It is supposed to prevent the government from discriminating against religious Americans.John McCormack

        1. Governor Pence continues to deceive the public about this deeply flawed law. Let’s clarify a few things.

          Gov. Pence myth: SB 101 is just like Illinois law that then-State Senator Obama voted to support.

          Truth: Gov. Pence fails to point out that Illinois has robust nondiscrimination clauses in its state Human Rights Act that specifically protect LGBT people. Indiana does not. This matters because those seeking to discriminate in Indiana may claim that the lack of a statewide law barring sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination means that there is no compelling state interest in enforcing local ordinances providing such protections.

          Gov. Pence myth: This law only reinforces established law in Indiana.

          Truth: The language in SB 101 is so broadly written that someone can sue even without their religious beliefs having actually been burdened simply by claiming that is ‘likely’ to happen.

          Gov. Pence myth: SB101 is just like federal law that President Clinton signed 20 years ago.

          Truth: SB 101 is substantially broader than the federal law. The federal RFRA can only be invoked against government action. SB 101 goes much further, inviting discrimination by allowing religious beliefs to be raised as a defense in lawsuits and administrative proceedings brought by workers, tenants and customers who have suffered discrimination. In addition, SB 101 makes it easier to claim a burden on religious freedom than the federal RFRA by defining the ‘exercise of religion’ as ‘any exercise of religion, whether or not compelled by, or central to, a system of religious belief.’

          “If Governor Pence meant it when he said that SB101 isn’t intended to allow discrimination against LGBT people, then why were amendments designed to make that explicit repeatedly rejected during the legislative process? If he truly means what he says, then he and the legislature should work together to add this language: ‘This chapter does not establish or eliminate a defense to a claim under any federal, state or local law protecting civil rights or preventing discrimination.’ And the Indiana government should include gay and transgender people within Indiana’s protections from discrimination.”

          1. It’s clear to me after following the comments on this topic, most people have no idea about this bill or its intended effects, due to incredibly sloppy and dishonest reporting. Let’s talk about factual information instead of debating media spin and demonizing other people.

            Currently, 19 states have a Religious Freedom Restoration Act (AL, CT, FL, ID, IN, IL, KS, KY, LA, MO, MS, NM, OK, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, and VA). Ten other states have religious liberty protections that state courts have interpreted to provide a similar (strict scrutiny) level of protection (AK, MA, ME, MI, MN, MT, NC, OH, WA, and WI). With some exceptions (such as Mississippi), the state versions are almost exactly the same as the federal version.

            As law professor Josh Blackman explains, the “RFRA does not provide immunity [to discriminate]. It only allows a defendant to raise a defense, which a finder of fact must consider, like any other defense that can be raised under Title VII or the ADA. RFRA is *not* a blank check to discriminate.”

            People talk about the law being used to discriminate against self-identified gays, or even other religious groups or races. If what you say is true, why haven’t those scenarios happened, in the last twenty years those other states’ law were in effect? You need to look at the exact intention and wording of the law.

            None of the RFRA’s even mention homosexuals, nor are they about discrimination. As University of Notre Dame law professor Rick Garnett explains, regarding the Indiana law:

            “The act is a moderate measure that tracks a well-established federal law and the laws of several dozen other states. Contrary to what some critics have suggested, it does not give anyone a ‘license to discriminate,’ it would not undermine our important civil-rights commitments, and it would not impose excessive burdens on Indiana’s courts.”

            Again, this whole thing amounts to incredibly sloppy and dishonest reporting being used to create conflict where there is none and demo using people whose convictions differ from others. If you want to boycott Indiana, are you willing to boycott the other 29 states as well?

        2. The problem with this statement is that, well, it’s false. That becomes clear when you read and compare those tedious state statutes. If you do that, you will find that the Indiana statute has two features the federal RFRA—and most state RFRAs—do not. First, the Indiana law explicitly allows any for-profit business to assert a right to “the free exercise of religion.” The federal RFRA doesn’t contain such language, and neither does any of the state RFRAs except South Carolina’s; in fact, Louisiana and Pennsylvania, explicitly exclude for-profit businesses from the protection of their RFRAs.

          The new Indiana statute also contains this odd language: “A person whose exercise of religion has been substantially burdened, or is likely to be substantially burdened, by a violation of this chapter may assert the violation or impending violation as a claim or defense in a judicial or administrative proceeding, regardless of whether the state or any other governmental entity is a party to the proceeding.” Neither the federal RFRA, nor 18 of the 19 state statutes cited by the Post, says anything like this; only the Texas RFRA, passed in 1999, contains similar language.

    2. From a Christian point of view:

      Jesus says in Mark 12:31 “And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.”

      How does does refusing services for LBGT people promote these Christian teachings? IMHO, I feel this law is hypocritical, as it goes against what Jesus was trying to teach us.

      1. Exactly. The idea that their so-called “God” cares more about them refusing service to people rather than embracing and loving them is ridiculous and shows they are nothing more than false prophets.

      2. “Love your neighbor” is different the “help your neighbor sin”.

        I love that little brat down the street that tips over my trash can, I’d step in front of a bullet for him, give him and his family a place to stay if his house burnt down, and help him rebuild.

        However I will not run around in the dark of night and help him tip over trash cans.

        1. Selling something to someone, that you sell to everyone else, is not “helping people to sin”.

          People’s personal choices are their responsibility, not yours.

          Bigots. They want the “freedom” to push their own beliefs on others and when you stop them they cry “intolerance!” “discrimination!” “persecution!”.

          1. I don’t know if you’re delusional or just lying about everything under the sun. The only person “pushing” their beliefs are those people suing others to bake them a cake. The baker in that case just didn’t want to participate, which is not even close to pushing anything.

            Your ability to twist facts so they don’t remotely resemble reality is astonishing. Quit trying to push your agenda on other people, let them live their own lives.

    3. Fsuck all you biggoted right wings destructive bastards.

      Apple is and always was a liberal minded, led and followed company – like it or not.

      Steve Jobs was liberally open minded, so is Tim Cook, so is anyone who thinks different.

      Apple’s DNA dictates that.

      If Apple has its head up its ass in your biggoted fashion, we would never see or any of its innovation.

      1. Breeze,
        your attitude is the attitude of anarchy, which is where we are headed. Just this past weekend, Bill Maher himself lamblasted one gay group for slamming a different gay group. This is what anarchy does. This is what your attitude does.

        “My rights, My Thinking” To hell with all others. No tolerance what so ever. The destruction of civilization. Purifying a single philosophy by excluding differing thoughts is not perfection, but destruction.

        I am very conservative. In my retirement, I am working with relief efforts in generational poverty. I don’t see the liberal left wing people (although I know plenty) offering help. Some of my best friends have been and still are left wingers. We talk and laugh and get along well even though we strongly disagree with each other. What I am hearing from you is TOTAL INTOLERANCE.

        The left really started out with good intentions 30 years ago with slamming people of intolerance, and now, they are the most intolerant of all, coming across as militant in their intolerance, just as you and others have been.

        THIS UNITED STATES OF AMERICA was founded upon religious freedom and for individuals to believe what and how they want without a federal government (king) interfering and dictating what everyone must believe and act upon. Now you want go back to the same King of the Hill demanding all believe the same as you.

        The ultimate conclusion is that one intolerant faction destroying the other intolerant faction in the end. Even Bill Maher knows that. Actually, this is the way that other intolerant groups (such as ISSL) take over and dictate to you what YOU will believe.

        Intolerance to different thought is a bitch. Be careful what you wish for. You will get it and it will destroy you.

          1. No discrimination sounds fine except one person’s liberty has to be curtailed for another’s to be allowed in this case. The government has to say one person’s religious freedom is more valuable than another – either the customer’s or the seller’s. This is a not a win-win situation so your statement is only true from one point of view.

            It is easy for Tim Cook to say Apple doesn’t discriminate because Apple is selling a standard product. The real issue is the service business where each “product” is customized by the seller (i.e. cake, photos, etc.). The customer is using the provider’s services directly not merely buying something off the shelf. This is the area where the government should not be forcing anyone to do something for someone else that violates their religious beliefs. I would never want someone to do that for me.

            1. I say WRONG. Its easy to hide the truth with bland words.

              If you are buying, you get the choice. :PERIOD.
              If you are selling, you have to sell openly.

              Or you agree that the police, ambulance, etc can decide not to service your needs cause of your religion or sexual beliefs!!!

              The government does not force you to be religious (or religious to a specific religion) because of separation of church and state).

              Or another example… the freedom to live is not the same as the freedom to kill. But they sure sound alike, right??

            2. Wrong. Why does one person’s liberty have to be curtailed? The owner of a business has a product/service he wishes to sell to the public. The buyer wants to buy. It is the seller who stops the transaction by refusing to sell to the buyer because the seller is discriminating against the buyer. The seller is judging the buyer. And using services is not different from buying a product. In fact, a valid argument can be made that the services you mention (“cake, photos, etc.”) are actually products: a cake, photographs, etc.

          2. breeze, that is a noble ideal, but clearly you have not studied law. discrimination with cause is absolutely necessary. The key is, you need to understand the definition of discrimination, and what is legally allowed.

            For example: trespassing is a legal concept whereby the property owner is fully within his rights to keep out those he deems unwanted. When clearly defined, that is a perfectly reasonable law and way to keep the peace.

            Likewise, bartenders are instructed by law not to serve alcohol to minors or those who are clearly intoxicated. The list of rational, reasonable discrimination goes on.

            You have not identified specifically what discrimination these new laws would create, and I am in no way supporting any law that proposes to use 1950+ year old textbooks to define what is acceptable discrimination in today’s society, but your ideological stand is untenable.

            Again, I side with you in spirit, but not in the extreme position you are staking. Not all discrimination is wrong or evil. Scientifically-based law that promotes fairer, safer, healthier society for the future is good, for it is discrimination that separate the wheat from the chaff. While it is true that much arbitrary religious BS is counterproductive, it is important to understand that some discrimination is necessary. Know the difference and use scientific method (Sam Harris style) to prove what laws/traditions work and what we should reject.

      2. Please cite a case where Steve Jobs stepped out the next day and spouted off at the hip with lip?

        Steve had his liberal views, but he ran his company very conservatively.

        He did not randomly comment on the active news cycle, that’s a good way to alienate people and loose their ties that bind them to you, eventually leading to losing them as customers.

        Try again.

        1. Apple is a global force now with and Steve picked Tim Cook becuase he saw him as the only person qualified to lead the Apple of today’s magnitude and scale – a global force and pinnacle.

          He specifically aksed Tim to NEVER comsider what he would do.

          Being today’s Apple’s CEO requires a completeley different public MO and Cook is an experienced expert at managing this kind of scale from every aspect, production and public relations.

          As Apple has always set the standards and lead in everthing it does and as Apple is under the microscope for all its production, ecological and employment endeavors,

          Tim Cook is making sure that Apple’s legacies, ethics and socialogical positions are solid public examples of what a good citizen and leading American company should be.

          You could pick to the “know evil” philosophies and ethics of Google if you chose, I think most Apple supporters would prefer Tim Cooks image for Apple.

    4. Regarding college and student’s ideas being challenged.

      1. Scientific facts in the hard sciences and pure math are not popular with some backwards students. So, these so-called conservatives are actually just plain ignorant.

      2. Next, the biological sciences. Here, biostatistics are more common than equations such as seen in physics.

      3. Then the social sciences (economics, home economics [daily survival], educational methods and styles). Once again, statistics takes a prime role. However , the humanity of the teachers is the key. Hard-headed people will be challenged more often. In my local area, people are not hard-headed in public as often as other areas. So there’s less chance to see who is deserving of being challenged.

    5. Sure they do. Religion is faith based NOT fact based, so yes, expect it to always to be challenged. Particularly when fact contradicts the faith. Or do you still think we live in a flat world that is the center of the universe? Welcome to the New Dark Ages.

    6. If is is true that “conservative students have their ideas challenged much more in college” then, perhaps, there is a reason. Perhaps their critical thinking is flawed, not superior.

      This conservative persecution complex associated with academia, the media, and various other groups is a form of mental illness – a severe neurosis at the very least.

      (what “me” posted works, too)

      1. Maybe you should look up what triggers “critical thinking”. Or I could just tell you so as to further my point.

        It’s challenge.

        And defending that challenge.

        It is groupthink(going along to get along)(heard mentality) that leads to stagnant thought and ultimately to decay.

        You should wish that your young liberal college students were challenged. They might actually turn out to be decent human beings with a brain then.

        Challenge is good.

    7. Seems to me that this idiotic law — and the morons like this one who support it without any use of critical thought — would work to empower believers in polygamy. Or, worse, pedophilia. Imagine a person jumping up and down and claiming that his religion enables him to enjoy the “friendship” of pre-teens.

      Religion is a load of bullshit anyway. Take time out from your busy schedule to learn this through the philosophy of Richard Dawkins or the humor of George Carlin. America is surely moving in the wrong direction. Some now speak openly of the “American Taliban”. The rest of the world used to laugh, now we shudder and cringe.

    8. I don’t know what schools you went to but go to a business school you will not get your ideas challenged. Try a religious school and see what happens. In the university I went to the beliefs expressed in the School of Business and the School of Arts and Sciences were very different. However the A&S school had mandatory classes in critical thinking, not the business school. Have you ever wondered why a lot of conservatives are against history classes? For some it is people finding out everything they promote has been done before in the 1800’s and 1910s and 1920s.

      1. I don’t know one conservative that is advocating for the removal of history class.

        However the very, ultra liberal, teachers union is vehemently pushing Common Core teaching in schools. The biggest core of which is removing history.

        Try again, this time cite facts please.

    9. This is the best way that any one could have put this. We do not deny anyone their freedom but progressives sure love to berate those who disagree with them and have different views. I don’t know what the laws say but I believe in protecting every persons rights, whether gay or strait. I loathe when people start to judge those who are gay. Our job is not to judge but to love those of all persuasions.

      1. It sure seems hypocritical of you, Jammer, to insult “progressives” and then claim to love those of all persuasions.

        Perhaps you should start by learning the laws to which you have admitted you are ignorant of.

        For the record, the greatest president the USA ever had, Theodore Roosevelt, was a Progressive. Read the Bull Moose party platform. It identifies a more prosperous, just, and fair path for everyone, based largely on scientific _progress_ and fair opportunities for all citizens.

        You see, progressives are for equal opportunity for all. How it is that you got it into your head that scientific progress is bad is beyond me. It’s not like you’re living the life Jesus proposed either — why not? Probably because like all people you have evolved to operate with modern tools, modern social norms, and modern laws that work better for everyone. That’s progress. Robber Baron capitalism is what results when extreme right wingers and religious zealots convince the gullible population that we don’t need science or laws or a working government.

        Note also that Cook is supposed to be a CEO and responsible first to his employees and second to his shareholders. How pandering to the extreme minority sexual fringe is accomplishing this is hard to justify. He should be spending only his own time pandering to his personal politics, and keep Apple out of it.

        1. Old Teddy, while advocating a few decent things, wanted to actively kill those he viewed as not being good enough.

          Straight up eugenics, as enacted by our favorite mustachioed progressive socialist, Hitler a few years later.

          Cull the heard of the handicapped, the jew, the poor, and the negro. Unless they could be used for slave labor.

          Yup, good old Teddy! Woo-Hoo!

    10. Point #1 Re “Dem/Lib/Progs”
      Not all Democrats are Liberals or Progressives. Not all Liberals are Democrats and not all Progressives are Democrats or Liberals. No more than all Republicans are Teabaggers or NeoCONs.
      All you do by bunching them together is show your bias and/or ignorance.
      Point #2
      These laws are not protective of religious freedom. They are a thinly veiled attempt to legalize discrimination against certain groups under the guise of faith. The bill passed by the Feds in the 1990s was to allow certain Native Americans to use Peyote in accordance with their faith traditions.
      Point #3
      Apple was founded as a company inclusive and tolerant of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender people. The 2 Steves were liberal when they founded Apple and Steve Jobs died a liberal- a friend of Bill Clinton- no less. Jobs allowed Bill Clinton the use of the Jackling House while his daughter was a student at Stanford.
      Apple extended benefits to same sex partners long before such relationships were recognized by law or was the trendy or accepted thing to do. As a shareholder, I assure you that Apple has never hidden it’s public support for GLBT people.
      Point #4
      Tim Cook using the bully pulpit of CEO of Apple is no different from any number of corporate types that contribute heavily to political campaigns without the consent of the shareholders. Apple, in fact, left the NeoCon dominated US Chamber of Commerce because of it’s deep involvement opposing responsible environmental laws, climate change policy and renewable energy.

      You are entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts. Easily verifiable facts counter every thing you posit.

  2. ever notice how tim cook doesn’t praise people for being religious and how important it is to honor someone’s religious beliefs?

    There is a war coming soon, I’m not going to take anyone’s side. I’ll just watch them slaughter each other

    1. I miss Steve Jobs. Steve stuck with what Apple does. Tim Cook takes Apple and it’s investors into stuff that Apple is not part of.

      Forcing any American to do something they do not want to do and that the Constitution defends is an error. Is Tim Cook next going to stand up against every country and religion that does not tolerate gays? You know they kill them in some counties. They take the pictures as they kill them but not as they get married. Tim, why did you first not send a letter to them? Are we not going to sell or support Apple products in those countries? Steve Jobs kept his personal efforts private. So should Tim Cook. He is the CEO of a publicly traded company not a privately owned company. Tim should at least stop dragging Apple and it’s investors into it. Maybe Tim Cook should leave Apple and start a group to defend his personal battles.

      1. Pence and his friends started this recent problem.

        Tim Cook and millions of others have the personal right as well as moral duty to step up as their ability allows.

        1. Not as acting Apple CEO using Apple resources he doesn’t. If Cook is going to be a full-time crusader for human rights, then he needs to quit his day job.

          I too miss Jobs. He privately supported causes in which he personally believed and he kept Apple out of the mudslinging.

          1. It is important for people in Indiana to be informed that walking into an Apple Store will be a welcoming experience for everyone. The new law puts the issue in question for businesses. Cook must speak out to make sure that all Apple Store managers and employees are crystal clear about company expectations. As an example, these laws have been used in some states to confuse individual pharmacists as to their duty to fill prescriptions for contraceptives, when the use of contraception was in conflict with the pharmacists religious beliefs.

            Tim Cook is being the great leader that he is and would certainly have taken the same position if he was straight.

      2. Tim’s letter says Apple Stores will not be using this law to exclude, but that all will be welcome. That’s important for Apple customers and shareholders to know.

        1. Unless you don’t have an appointment to try on the Apple Watch.
          Then Apple will ask you to leave.

          (see, i spelled it out so you picky people wouldn’t bitch about me referring to it as the A-Watch or iWatch).

            1. Can’t get that key on iOS… or can you? It just occurred to me: is it somewhere in the emojis? Anyhow, it’s a pita, so iOS people often use iWatch as proxy.

          1. Paul, er… NO. if you do not have an appointment, you will have to make one, but you are free to shop until that time arrives.

            Your doctor will not see you unless you have an appointment. OK some will see you if you are dying, but don’t push it too far. LOL

      3. Agree that Tim Cook should stick to the knitting that is Apple, and what he was hired to perform under Apple’s business plan and stockholder expectations, and not embroil Apple nor Apple’s customers and employees in what is ultimately a no-win issue, as it is currently being pursued in the court of popular opinion.

        I do not wish to hear about Mr. Cook’s gay lifestyle, any more than he might want to hear about my non-gay lifestyle.

        Continuing on this path of gay activism under the aegis of Apple will only result in breeding resentment and negative opinions within a no-so-insignificant number of potential customers and decision makers, as they ponder future purchases of Apple products and services.

        Steve Jobs is the benchmark that is applied with regards to measuring Apple’s financial success — that benchmark should ALSO include how Mr. Jobs kept his personal lifestyle and beliefs of such off of the publicly visible Apple radar screen.

        Niffy

  3. So I’m really missing something here. If you’re gay and a baker doesn’t want to serve you because of it, you should actually be GRATEFUL that he does this- why in the world would you want to give your business to someone who discriminates like that? Spend your money on a baker who supports your right to sexual orientation.

    Sure, you could “force” him to serve you, but really- what good would that do? It would just make him resent you more. Would your power to force him make you feel superior? Have you really DONE anything by forcing him to sell to you? You’re MUCH better off by having him lose business than forcing him to take your money…

    The only possible exception I can see is in the case of a monopoly or cartel. But the above examples didn’t seem to be talking about that. Boycott those who discriminate. But freedom of religion (even a discriminatory religion) should be guaranteed. I don’t think it’s right to force someone to act (sell) against their principles. Yes, discrimination is bad- but they’re not going out and burning down your house- they’re just refusing to sell to you. I think that’s their right…

    Take the French example of how this can go really wrong: in France it’s illegal for a muslim woman to cover her head if she’s a teacher. Absolutely no religious freedom there. A law that supports religious freedom seems like a good idea (so long as your religion doesn’t say you have to “kill all blacks”, for example).

    So long as your religious freedom does not deny others their constitutional rights (not their right to buy things, their constitutional rights), it seems fine by me…

  4. If you are a buyer – personal or a business – yes, purchase according your personal preferences.
    But if you are a business seller – in the public domaine, and subject to non-discrimination laws – you follow the law, not your personal beliefs/preferences (if they conflict).
    Media are not reporting this personal/business distinction.

      1. Smoke and Tetrachloride, your personal/business distinction is far from that simple. There are circumstances in which businesses are able to choose to whom services or goods are provided. And in fact the Indiana law that’s stirring controversy is modeled on existing federal law, which also exists in a number of other states.

        I don’t support bigotry or intolerance. Gays have been too much exposed to that.

        But I’m concerned that some gays have themselves become bigoted and intolerant of the rights of others. The case of the baker who provided other goods to a gay couple, but who refused to create a wedding cake for them because of his religious beliefs, is an example. The response by the couple was vicious and vindictive, seeking to ruin the baker. They had become bigoted and intolerant. How sad.

        1. Bull. I am familiar with the “Sweet Cakes by Melissa” bakery discrimination case. And their response wasn’t vicious or vindictive. The response by the couple was simply to contact the Oregon Bureau of Labor to notify them that the bakery was discriminating unlawfully by refusing them service because they were a gay couple, claiming their marriage was an “abomination unto the lord”. When the OBL investigated, it found the bakery was indeed in violation of the Oregon Equality Act of 2007, which protects the rights of Oregonians who are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender, and as a result faced fines up to $150,000 (75,000 per person who the baker wrongfully discriminated against). The simple fact is the bakery broke the law, and is paying the price as a result.

          1. Which is to say, the gay couple sought to ruin the baker, displaying no tolerance for religious convention. Which is precisely why laws such as the federal and Indiana laws become necessary to help balance conflicting value systems in the courts.

            1. Nope. The couple simply wanted to purchase a wedding cake. The bakery discriminated against them, just as businesses discriminated against black people before the civil rights movement. Discrimination is wrong, no matter how you try to justify it.

              The fact is the bakery took it upon themselves to break the law by discriminating. Nobody forced them to do that. And now the bakery will face the consequences of their actions. If the bakery had not decided to break the law, this would not have happened to them.

              Blaming the victims of discrimination is pretty lame. Get a life.

            2. 1. If the concern is being forced to provide service to someone whose actions or lifestyle goes against your religious beliefs, what specific belief is being violated? The fact that someone has, in your eyes, sinned? If so, go out of business because nobody is worthy of your services. What about the countless other cheaters, thieves, murderers who are provided service each day?

              2. On the other hand, even if you’re not religious, how would you react if someone wanted to put “Happy Birthday, Satan”, or “Sicilians are lazy inbreds” on a one of your products? Isn’t it more to the point that it has nothing to do w/religion, but crosses the line of decency/social mores? (And, yeah, Satan may have a religious connotation, but whether you believe in it or not, I’m not sure how typical people would feel wishing him well tidings on his birthday)

              3. Aren’t there already laws that allow businesses to communicate their specific rules/standards, along with enforcing federal/state standards? No shirt, no shoes, no service. No X-rated porn on the app store. No child porn anywhere.

              4. Why does the government need to be involved here in addition to what’s already on the books?

              Somewhere up above if he truly exists, God thinks we’re all a bunch of morons.

    1. Is that why A&E wanted to fire Phil Robertson for a simple expression of his Biblical beliefs? A&E did not seem very concerned with not discriminating when they summarily suspended him without any cause. Of course later they undid this after they saw the vast majority of Americans still respect the idea of religious tolerance. But not A&E. And now not Apple.

    1. Absolutely. He is alienating about half of his potential customers. This is not in Apple’s best interest and, subsequently, in Apple stockholders’ best interests. He is not fulfilling his duties as CEO of Apple.

      1. Half? I thought conventional wisdom placed the gay population at about 10%. Isn’t he pissing off 90% of the country? Oh, wait, the number still opposing gay marriage is down to 45% overall, under 20% for those under 35. You have to be really old or really Republican to still be fighting that battle.

        1. quiviran, your guesstimate of LGBT percentage shows just how effective the pro-LGBT propaganda is.

          Gallop’s poll determined that the overall national average is 3.5% LGBT, with the highest state coming in at 5.1% (Hawaii) and the lowest 1.7% (ND).

          Just goes to show how the increasingly outspoken minority is pushing their agenda well beyond their actual numbers. I’m fine with fair treatment for all people regardless, but at some point it’s clear that there’s a significant core of militant and in-your-face pro-gay propagandists who demand special treatment and/or go out of their way to make other people uncomfortable.

          At what point does one’s right to declare a minority sexuality preference impinge on my right to peace and quiet?

          1. Makes my point even stronger, Cook is pissing off 96.5% of the country (NOT). Fewer people are caring what other people do in their bedrooms every year. You should get over it, too.

            I’m having a hard time figuring out how buying a cake or expecting to have a prescription filled despite the beliefs of the pharmacist is being in someones face or impinging their religious freedom.

            But, if the gays are coming after you in particular, maybe you should examine your behavior towards others. Maybe you’re the one trying to cram your views down the throats of others.

  5. First, I’m agnostic. I tend to not enjoy the company of religiously engaged people. But that said, I can’t presume that it is up to me or the government to tell them how to run their businesses even if they are complete bigots.

    If they were bigots and I found out, I would use my money and my mouth to overcome them, not lawyers and laws. Too many unintended side effects.

    This law will also make it so that a Muslim restaurant won’t have to serve food that is haram, Jewish being kosher, etc…

    This isn’t about gay rights. It’s about individual rights. As much as bigots make me angry, it’s their right to feel the way they do. I won’t be supporting them.

  6. People with too much power (or even those with very little) are dangerous.
    Religions (man made attempts to control the masses) are dangerous.
    God (for those that oppose His will) is dangerous.
    Beliefs are dangerous.
    Dogma is dangerous.
    YOU are dangerous.
    Haven’t you got that through your thick skull yet?
    We… must… control… YOU!!!!!

    1. You wrongly focus on “religious”. There are evil people that are part of all religions just as there are evil people among agnostics and atheists such as Hitler, Staling, Mar Tse Tung, Pol Pot, and that is just the last 100 years.

      It is not a “religious vs non-religious” problem, it is a human problem.

      1. exactly… Stalin not Staling (unless you were stalling)
        I did not focus on religious.
        Religions are dangerous (to other religions).
        Please be mindful of the Dark Side, and the deceit that it brings forth. The Dark Side leads to a way of life some would label “unnatural”.

  7. Fauck all you biggoted right womg bastards.

    Apple os loberal, Steve Jobs was liberal and anyone who thinks different will forever be open minded, just like Appe’s DNA .

      1. Non-Federal Receipts “Exempt From Limits”
        JOBS, STEVE
        WALNUT CREEK, CA 94596
        APPLE COMPUTERS
        DNC-NON-FEDERAL INDIVIDUAL
        11/01/2000 50000.00 20036584283
        Total Soft Money: 50000.00
        Contributions to Political Committees
        JOBS, STEVE
        PALO ALTO, CA 94301
        PIXAR
        PELOSI, NANCY
        VIA NANCY PELOSI FOR CONGRESS
        05/12/1998 1000.00 98033124739
        JOBS, STEVE P.
        CUPERTINO, CA 95014
        APPLE COMPUTERS
        DEMOCRATIC CONGRESSIONAL CAMPAIGN COMMITTEE
        06/29/2006 26700.00 28930101573
        JOBS, STEVEN MR.
        PALO ALTO, CA 94301
        APPLE COMPUTER/PIXAR ANIMATION ST
        BRADLEY, BILL
        VIA BILL BRADLEY FOR PRESIDENT INC
        03/17/1999 500.00 20990095811
        JOBS, STEVEN P
        SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94104
        APPLE COMPUTER
        DNC SERVICES CORPORATION/DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL COMMITTEE
        06/06/1997 10000.00 97032233282
        12/08/1997 5000.00 98032672215
        JOBS, STEVEN P
        WALNUT CREEK, CA 94596
        APPLE COMPUTER
        EMANUEL, RAHM
        VIA FRIENDS OF RAHM EMANUEL
        03/25/2004 1000.00 24991065856
        KENNEDY, EDWARD MOORE SENATOR
        VIA KENNEDY FOR SENATE 2000
        12/30/1999 1000.00 20020031212
        MARCH FOR PROGRESS, INC.
        01/10/2000 4000.00 20035290212
        JOBS, STEVEN P
        WALNUT CREEK, CA 94596
        APPLE COMPUTER/CEO
        EMANUEL, RAHM
        VIA FRIENDS OF RAHM EMANUEL
        03/25/2004 1000.00 24991065856
        JOBS, STEVEN P
        WALNUT CREEK, CA 94956
        APPLE COMPUTER
        KENNEDY, EDWARD MOORE SENATOR
        VIA KENNEDY FOR SENATE 2000
        12/30/1999 1000.00 20020031212

  8. Damn typos…:
    Worth repeating anyway:

    Fsuck all you biggoted right wings destructive bastards.

    Apple is and always was a liberal minded, led and followed company – like it or not.

    Steve Jobs was liberally open minded, so is Tim Cook, so is anyone who thinks different.

    Apple’s DNA dictates that.

    1. “Apple’s DNA dictates”….
      Now who’s being a religious zealot?
      Are you going to pull out the Apple Manifesto so we can all read precisely what that DNA says, breeze?

      Jobs steered Apple clear of political and religious controversy. Cook’s reckless meddling has steered Apple into the center of controversy. That is sad, because nobody should use a corporation for political power. Cook is acting just as arrogant as the Koch Bros.

      If Cook feels so strongly about fixing laws, then he needs to resign and dedicate his time to those causes. While CEO of Apple, he needs to spend his working hours fixing Apple’s many problems, which are related to software bugs, overdue product updates, the unwanted dumbing down & uglification of hardware and software, and services that don’t work reliably.

      1. 1. Tim Cook reckless ?
        2. We only live once. In the long run, bug fixing will go on. Bug fixes belong to programmers and that section. Moral issues belong to everybody. Executive job is strategy.

      2. No, Tim Cook is acting even more arrogant than the Koch Brothers. The Koch Brothers are using their own money for any political activity they participate in, which is far smaller than the billionaires who donate to Democrat and Liberal causes such as George Soros, and the President of Progressive Insurance who has donated millions to Liberal causes.

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