June 30, 2014
Apple waved the banner for LGBT rights at the San Francisco Pride Festival, one of the many Gay Pride parades held across the U.S. today. Dubbed "Apple Pride," the company's participation in the event had thousands of Apple employees marching with T-shirts designed with the Apple logo lined with Pride colors. Apple CEO Tim Cook and environmental adviser Lisa P. Jackson were in attendance, as pictured in a number of selfies compiled by 9to5Mac. The chief executive, in particular, tweeted to congratulate the Apple employees and their families in joining the cause, adding that "Inclusion inspires innovation." Reuters, Apple spokeswoman Michaela Wilkinson said, "Apple believes equality and diversity make us stronger, and we're proud to support our employees and their friends and families in this weekend's celebration." Apple has never been one to shy away from supporting the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community. Cook himself penned an opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal late last year, urging the U.S. Congress to approve a bill that would "protect workers against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity." Also worth noting is Apple's addition of emoji depicting gay and lesbian couples in iOS 6 in 2012. At the parade, Apple also gave out $1 iTunes gift cards to onlookers, enabling them to download free songs from the iTunes Store. It also celebrated the event by featuring an "LGBT Gay Pride" station on iTunes Radio.