TUPELO, Miss. — The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has ruled in favor of the American Family Association (AFA, www.AFA.net) regarding Apple Inc.’s recent attempt to exclude a shareholder resolution that seeks to hold the company accountable for its policies and practices that imperil free speech.
After Apple’s less-than-stellar report on the 2023 Viewpoint Diversity Score Business Index, AFA submitted a proposal calling on Apple to conduct an investigation and issue a report to shareholders. Rather than allowing its shareholders to vote on the proposal at the 2024 annual meeting, Apple asked permission from the SEC to exclude it from the proxy ballot. A letter from Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) attorneys encouraged the SEC to allow the vote on the important topic, and thankfully the SEC agreed.
“Thank God that free speech is still valued in some form in this nation,” said AFA President Tim Wildmon. “Even as corporate giants attempt to suppress voices that don’t align with their own views, right will always win out. What does Apple hope to hide by attempting to silence our valid concerns and stopping the vote? The purpose of Apple’s long-held policy against ‘offensive, insensitive and upsetting’ language is to censor biblical views on marriage and sexuality. Apple would rather bow down to the laws of the liberal mob than the laws of God.”
In a resource titled, Our Commitment to Human Rights, Apple claims to “believe in the critical importance of an open society in which information flows freely.” Unfortunately, that commitment is severely undermined by the corporation’s policies.
“Major corporations like Apple shouldn’t be hiding from shareholders who are concerned about the company’s impact on free speech, and the SEC’s decision is a much-needed step toward transparency,” said ADF Senior Counsel and Senior Vice President for Corporate Engagement Jeremy Tedesco. “Apple needs to rebuild trust with its shareholders and customers, but that can’t happen unless it answers basic questions about whether it is treating everyone equally regardless of their political or religious views.”
For over 40 years, AFA has operated within the mission to inform, equip, and activate individuals to strengthen the moral foundations of American culture and give aid to the church here and abroad in its task of fulfilling the Great Commission. Founded in 1977, AFA has long been on the front lines of America’s culture war. Today, AFA is one of the largest and most effective pro-family organizations in the country, with nearly a million online supporters and approximately 110,000 subscribers to The Stand (formerly known as the AFA Journal), the ministry’s monthly magazine. Find AFA Action Alerts here. In addition, AFA owns and operates nearly 180 radio stations across the country under the American Family Radio banner.