Apple says controversial new Mississippi law 'empowers discrimination'

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Apple has joined other large companies in opposing a controversial Mississippi law that detractors have criticized for being anti-LGBT. Billed as protecting religious liberty, the Mississippi law allows some taxpayer-funded and private organizations to refuse service to LGBT citizens. Speaking to The Clarion-Ledger (via 9to5Mac), Apple expressed disappointment in the law:

In a statement Thursday, the corporation said the Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act "empowers discrimination.""We want Mississippians to know that our stores and our company are open to everyone, regardless of where they come from, what they look like, how they worship or who they love."

Apple joins a number of other technology companies like Microsoft, IBM and HP that have come out against the Mississippi bill. The companies also recently voiced opposition to a similarly controversial anti-LGBT bill in North Carolina.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster
39 Comments
  • Sounds like a good common sense law to me Sent from the iMore App
  • Except they ought not to sell to the elected officials involved.
  • Yup. In my religion we worship Adolf Cthulu and this law allows me to not serve Christians, Jews, LGBT, mentally handicapped, Non-Aryans and those that don't follow the Adolfian Cthulian Holy Book. Good day for all those that want to be bigots and hide behind religion. Sent from the iMore App
  • Well then thank goodness you don't offer a product I want to buy. Or maybe you, but guess what, I can go get the same product from one of you competitors who will sell to a Christian. So if you won't bake me a wedding cake a thousand other bakers will.
  • Perhaps people just got sick of lifestyles they didn't agree with being forced upon them. Believe it or not, morals differ and some believe that things like homosexual, polygamist, etc acts are unsavoury. Christian bakers wouldn't bake a gay wedding cake any more than a satanist bakery would bake a Christian cake. Why must you force your views on others? Sent from the iMore App
  • You think you're being clever, but all of those customers you're refusing to serve would say "You don't want my business? Fine. I'll go somewhere else." Except for the libs. The libs would sue you to make you serve them.
  • Oh look someone complaining because religious freedom was protected.
  • Never mind the fact that apple regularly sells products in China and Arab countries with much more strict laws than any in the United States Sent from the iMore App
  • Good point. Sent from the iMore App
  • I don't ever in see Apple or any other companies complaining about discrimination in Middle East or Asia where citizens have no rights in some areas.
  • Why should the US strive to be like countries? Sent from the iMore App
  • I love when companies get involved in politics...not. In fact it's sick and tiring. Do you jobs of providing us a good technological experience with the devices and services you create. Leave politics out. It's really not that hard.. Posted with the Nexus 6, Nexus 5, or Surface Pro 3
  • This same logic needs to be applied to the entire human race then. Just do your ******* job and don't worry about what others do with their lives. Yet, somehow the human race has managed to make things complicated.
  • Companies are always involved in politics. Free trade, corporate welfare, Farm subsidies, healthcare costs, minimum wage laws, gasoline taxes, any regulation of any industry at all, Union rights, tax laws, Securities law, you can go on and on and all of those are political issues. companies always have an opinion and have gotten involved.
  • The hate is strong in here. Posted via the iMore App for Android
  • Hatemongers come out of the woodwork on imore whenever Apple stands of for civil rights.
  • Why?, equality is for all human beings.
  • This law protects the 99.9% of us who aren't screwed up. Unfortunately it is needed. I don't get why these companies have to get so agitated...it will not have any impact on revenue of their products. None.
  • Believing in invisible space monsters that condone r*ping, incest, and genocide isn't "screwed up" at all. Sent from the iMore App
  • So is apple dismantling the North Carolina data center? I suppose iCloud services will be down during the transition?
  • But what if you could be tossed from your job or your house or beat up because people didn't like YOU and YOUR religion. That would not be OK, and it's not OK to allow people to be jerks to the minority either.
  • The "rights" of the gender confused shouldn't take precedent over the common decency most of us enjoy Sent from the iMore App
  • The "rights" of the racially confused shouldn't take precedence over the common decency most of us whites enjoy. Y hello thar Jim Crowe.
  • There's no racial confusion when people live as they were born. Gender confusion on the other hand is very real Sent from the iMore App
  • Yeah, it's real, and a really horrible thing to go through. Those of us who are not bigots call it being transgender. To be honest, I'm not sure what "common decency" is, but it seems your definition of it is very, very different to mine. I refer to it as having respect for other people.
  • It's not that difficult to be who you were born as. Anyone else is just confused Sent from the iMore App
  • Can you please cite one case in any of the 21 states that have enacted Relgious Freedom laws where one person was tossed from their job, evicted from their house, or beat up because of the law itself? I don't mind if you have a different opinion, but don't aggrandize the victimization of your beliefs in that manner. State the facts, state your opinion, then move on.
  • I'm guessing that Apple will be closing down its sales and services in Saudi Arabia then. No? Why not?
  • The homophobes should patronize a different company.
  • It's sad to see a law that in any way validates narrow-minded bigots, and I am even more saddened to see them commenting here. Is it OK to decide not to provide a service to someone due to the colour of their skin nowadays? Thankfully we've moved on as a society from that. How is this any different?
  • Because we have people who are confused and pretending to be someone else. Sent from the iMore App
  • Get your facts straight, the laws in Mississippi and North Carolina are in no way the same. One, NC, demands users of a bathroom or locker room be the gender specified not identity. The other, MS, allows people to not serve people if the object to that person based on religious objections. The MS bill allows personal intolerance and puts the constitional rights of the religious over and above the people they object to when it should be both parties whose constitional rights are protected. The NC bill is intended to keep predators from using the law In Charlotte it sought to superceede from access to potential victims. Does it violate a constitional right? I'm not sure. We will have to see where in the constitional legal scholars find a right that the law violates. I'd offer one but I cannot think of one.
  • Can I point out that a company that does "diversity reports" and basically hires on quotas, can't call anyone else racist. They're racist too, maybe "reverse racist", but that is just as racist imho.
  • This is true. Apple especially love to say they do.
    It’s called positive discrimination I think. A difficult subject.
  • Mississippi?, isn't that hillbilly KKK country?, not surprised they hate gays, closed minded hicks, come and join the 21st Century.
  • You reckon any of them have realised that Apple's CEO is "one of them" yet?
  • Apple needs to stfu and stay out of politics. Posted via the iMore App for Android
  • I am openly gay (and thankfully live in NYC) and I do feel that this law empowers discrimination. A business can simply deny me a service just solely based on my being gay. This new law may hide under the guise of religious freedom but its an open door to discriminate against someone like myself because I am gay. However, having said that here is my personal true feelings about it, if you don't want my money or the money of others like myself. Well that's fine because your competitor(s) will happily take it. It took myself and a vast majority of LGBT people a very long time to not just come to terms with who we are and I for one will be damned if I will allow anyone to make me feel any less about myself because of who I choose to love. So they can have their law and it will not affect me one bit because there will always be someone who will accept my money.
  • Come on folks, don't be so hard on Mississippi. As a life long Louisiana resident, I rather like it when they draw the backwards and bigoted spotlight off of my home state.