RIYADH, KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA—Chuckling heartily while gesturing toward the news story displayed on one of his hundreds of Mac computers, King Salman of Saudi Arabia reported to his security detail Friday that he is really getting a kick out of Apple, Inc. lecturing the State of North Carolina for enacting a law requiring people to use the public restroom corresponding to their biological gender.
“Look at this—this Tim Cook fellow is publicly chastising the governor of North Carolina, sending him threatening letters, ordering him to repeal this bathroom law,” he chortled to several nearby bodyguards. “Just two years ago this same man was begging us for clearance to operate here in our blessed kingdom, where being a homosexual is punishable by death, as it is the will of Allah.”
“Honestly, does he not know we publicly execute gay people?” he added.
After reading a few paragraphs of the story aloud in between howls of laughter, the King went on to remind his guards that cross-dressing is literally illegal in Saudi Arabia, where Apple is happily doing business. He then used one of his iPhones to text his son, Prince Faisal, a link to the story, adding, “Oh no, do you think Tim Cook might send us a sternly worded letter? Lol.”
At publishing time, King Salman had decided to purchase thirty or forty more iPad Pros from the nearest Apple Store, once he determined whether he would pay using Apple Pay or PayPal.