Alabama Democratic representative, Patricia Todd, is moving forward with an anti-discrimination bill that safeguards teachers and state employees that identify as gay, bisexual, lesbian, and transgender from being discriminated against. With the blessing of Apple and their CEO, the bill will be named after Tim Cook. The announcement comes just a month after Tim Cook accepted an Alabama Academy of Honor Award for his speech that criticized Alabama for their lack of progress in providing equal rights for members of the LGBT community.
Tim Cook berated Alabama regarding its lack of progression in a speech that he conducted on October 27th, hoping to open the eyes of those that overlook common acts of discrimination. Cook compared the progress of LGBT acceptance to that of African Americans in the past, CNet shared.
“As a state, we took too long to take steps toward equality. We were too slow on equality for African-Americans. We were too slow on interracial marriage. And we are still too slow for equality for the LGBT community.”
Within a few days after the speech, Tim Cook came out of the proverbial closet and revealed his own sexual identity with the world. Cook reportedly used his own experiences to speak honestly on the subject and deliver the message in a meaningful manner.
“Being gay has given me a deeper understanding of what it means to be in the minority and provided a window into the challenges that people in other minority groups deal with every day.”
When it was first announced that Tim Cook’s name would be placed on the Alabama anti-discrimination bill, Apple PR reps reached out to express their concern in regards to Tim Cook’s name being attached to such a controversial bill, worrying that it might have an impact on Apple as a whole. However, when it was later released on Buzzfeed, Apple changed their stance and revealed that Tim Cook was honored to be attached to the bill and gave it his full support.
Patricia Todd is the only openly gay legislator in Alabama and feels that the bill is a necessity due to the impact it could have on the careers of state and educational professionals that fear for their jobs due to their sexual orientation. She realizes the bill will face an uphill battle, according to AL, a subsidiary of the Alabama Media Group, but is determined to see it through and protect those that are potentially in danger of civil rights violations.
“People think LGBT employees are protected under federal civil rights laws, but that’s just not the case.”
[Photo Courtesy: Mactrast]