Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 4th Nov 2013 17:14 UTC

Tim Cook, in a letter published in The Wall Street Journal:

Apple's antidiscrimination policy goes beyond the legal protections U.S. workers currently enjoy under federal law, most notably because we prohibit discrimination against Apple's gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender employees. A bill now before the U.S. Senate would update those employment laws, at long last, to protect workers against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

We urge senators to support the Employment Nondiscrimination Act, and we challenge the House of Representatives to bring it to the floor for a vote.

It's hard to imagine for someone like me, from The Netherlands, but in the US, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people have, in most states, far fewer rights than straight, non-transgender people. The LGBT community in the US still has a long fight ahead of itself, and large companies like Apple publicly urging Congress to address the archaic position of the LGBT community can only be seen as a good thing.

Most technology companies support the LGBT community's fight for equality, and considering the importance of this industry, that's a blessing.

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I have to argue with you that LGBT rights are basic human rights. Before you jump down my throat let me explain. There are no special class of rights called "LGBT rights," there are simply "human rights." Whether a person is gay or not should be irrelevant. You may agree with me on this.

The fact is, however, that NOBODY, gay or not, has a right to a specific job. That is to say, my boss can fire me. Period. Your boss can fire you. Period. You also have the right to quit or work for someone else.

Rights can not be materially positive. You can't have a right to something someone else has. You have a right to acquire property, you do not have a right to be granted someone else's property, as an example.

By this I mean that any class of people has the same rights as any other class of people. I would have no problem with a gay employer firing me because I'm strait if they want to have a strictly gay workforce. That is their prerogative. Sure its a relatively unlikely scenario, at least at the moment, but the principle is the same. I'll go work for another company that likes me if that's the case. And like I've said before but nobody listens, there are loads of gay friendly companies out there to work for.

Edited 2013-11-07 07:15 UTC

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