The US is going through one of the worst civil unrest in decades over the killing of a black man last week. From New York, Los Angeles to Seattle, several major US cities have imposed curfews to maintain peace as protestors continue to show their outrage over the killing of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, at the hands of a police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The killing of 46-year-old Floyd has not only irked the common people but also tech CEOs and Silicon Valley Bigwigs. Tim Cook, Sundar Pichai, Mark Zuckerberg, Satya Nadella, among others, have spoken against racial abuse and condemn police brutality on social media and in internal memos.
Here’s what some of the tech CEOs had to say on the nationwide civil unrest over the death of George Floyd.
Tim Cook, CEO of Apple
Apple CEO Tim Cook sent a memo to employees on Sunday addressing the larger issue of racism in modern American society, according to Bloomberg.
“We can have no society worth celebrating unless we can guarantee freedom from fear for every person who gives this country their love, labor and life,” Cook said.
Cook not only condemned the killing of George Floyd but also acknowledged that racial injustice exists in the country including in “our criminal justice system” and “in the disproportionate toll of disease on Black and Brown communities,” as well as from economic inequality and disparities in educational opportunities.
Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google
Pichai took to Twitter to show his anger against the killing of George Floyd, whose death sparked mass protests in the US. “For those feeling grief, anger, sadness & fear, you are not alone,” Pichai wrote on Twitter. Google and YouTube on Sunday put a black ribbon on its home page in the US was a way to extend support for racial inequality.
Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook
In a post on Sunday, Zuckerberg committed $10 million to groups fighting racial inequality. The billionaire CEO wrote: “The pain of the last week reminds us how far our country has to go to give every person the freedom to live with dignity and peace.
“It reminds us yet again that the violence Black people in America live with today is part of a long history of racism and injustice. We all have the responsibility to create change.”
Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft
“There is no place for hate and racism in our society,” Nadella said in a post published on Twitter and LinkedIn. “Empathy and shared understanding are a start, but we must do more. I stand with the Black and African American community and we are committed to building on this work in our company and in our communities,” he said. Nadella, who was born in India, said “we must do more” to tackle the issue of racism within our company and in our communities.
Evan Spiegel, CEO of Snapchat
Snap CEO Evan Spiegel wrote a lengthy memo to employees on Sunday where he calls for a “diverse, non-partisan Commission on Truth, Reconciliation, and Reparations” to address racial abuse and tax reform in the US. “As for Snapchat, we simply cannot promote accounts in America that are linked to people who incite racial violence, whether they do so on or off our platform,” he wrote in a memo, as obtained by The Information.
Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO of Uber
Khosrowshahi tweeted Sunday that his company would donate $1 million to the groups Policing Equity and the Equal Justice in “making criminal justice in America more just for all.”
“@Uber stands in solidarity with the Black community and with peaceful protests against the injustice and racism that have plagued our nation for too long,” Khosrowshahi wrote.
Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon
Bezos, although yet to make an official statement over the death of George Floyd, shared an essay by the writer Shenequa Golding about the difficulty of maintaining professionalism while witnessing the death of black men and women. “The pain and emotional trauma caused by the racism and violence we are witnessing toward the Black community has a long reach,” Bezos wrote. “I recommend you take a moment to read this powerful essay, especially if you are a manager or leader.”
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