Apple's Tim Cook 'deeply disappointed' in Indiana's anti-gay law

Indiana's religious freedom law: Belief or bigotry?
Indiana's religious freedom law: Belief or bigotry?

Apple CEO Tim Cook said Friday that he's "deeply disappointed" in Indiana's new anti-gay law.

"Apple is open for everyone," tweeted Cook, who came out as gay last year. "We are deeply disappointed in Indiana's new law." It was retweeted and favorited over 2,000 times within the first hour. Cook, who has more than 1 million Twitter (TWTR, Tech30) followers, also called on the Arkansas governor to veto a similar bill in his state.

The Indiana law gives businesses owners who oppose homosexuality for religious reasons the right to turn away gay, lesbian and transgender people. Governor Mike Pence signed the law Thursday, hailing it as a victory for "religious liberty."

On Friday, a spokeswoman for Pence reiterated the Governor's argument that the law does not discriminate against gay people and is similar to 1993 federal law designed to protect American's freedom of religion.

Cook also tweeted, "Around the world, we strive to treat every customer the same -- regardless of where they come from, how they worship or who they love."

Apple has two stores in Indiana, located in malls in Indianapolis and Mishawaka.

Tim Cook's push for LGBT equality
Tim Cook's push for LGBT equality

Other businesses have also spoken out against the law saying, it will make it harder to attract employees and customers. They note that Indiana doesn't currently have any laws prohibiting discrimination against gay people.

Indiana Chamber of Commerce: "In our eyes, the law is entirely unnecessary. Passing the law was always going to bring the state unwanted attention."

Eli Lilly: "We certainly understand the implications this legislation has on our ability to attract and retain employees. Simply put, we believe discriminatory legislation is bad for Indiana and for business."

Eli Lilly (LLY) employs more than 11,700 workers in Indiana, mostly in Indianapolis.

Related: Brands that love LBGT the most

NCAA: "We are especially concerned about how this legislation could affect our student-athletes and employees."

Indianapolis is a major destination for conventions and sporting events, including the upcoming NCAA Final Four college basketball tournament.

NCAA President Mark Emmert said the NCAA will "work diligently" to ensure competitors and visitors at next week's Final Four are not "negatively impacted by this bill."

Gen Con, the video game convention: The law would "factor into our decision making on hosting the convention in the state of Indiana in future years."

The convention brought 56,000 people to the state last year, according to Gen Con CEO Adrian Swartout.

Related: Guinness returns to sponsor N.Y.'s St. Patrick's Day Parade

Salesforce: CEO Marc Benioff said on Twitter (TWTR, Tech30) that his company will "dramatically reduce our investments" in Indiana, calling the law an "outrage." Benioff called on other CEOs in the tech industry to follow suit.

Yelp: CEO Jeremy Stoppelman said the company will "make every effort" to expand its corporate operations in states that do not have such laws on the books. "These laws set a terrible precedent that will likely harm the broader economic health of the states where they have been adopted, the businesses currently operating in those states and, most importantly, the consumers who could be victimized under these laws."

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