Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg defended on Wednesay the political stance of the company board member and Paypal Co-founder Peter Thiel, who, in the last days, made a massive donation for the Republican nominee Donald Trump. Thiel's actions created a strong discomfort in Silicon Valley, where many technology leaders have overwhelmingly supported the Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.
Zuckerberg Defends Ideological Diversity
Through a Facebook post which was only visible to its employees, Zuckerberg explained the futility of not accepting a different point of view, and invoked the importance of diversity for the social media company, explaining that it is possible for many people to support Trump without embracing any kind of racism, xenophobia or sexism.
"We care deeply about diversity. That's easy to say when it means standing up for ideas you agree with. It's a lot harder when it means standing up for the rights of people with different viewpoints to say what they care about. We can't create a culture that says it cares about diversity and then excludes almost half the country because they back a political candidate, there are many reasons a person might support Trump that do not involve racism, sexism, xenophobia or accepting sexual assault," wrote Zuckerberg in the post, as reported by The Guardian.
Peter Thiel´s Political Stance, Silicon Valley´s Fury
These statements close the speculations about what could happen with Peter Thiel´s position in the social media company, after his support for Donald Trump and the donation of $1.25 million to his campaign, which sparked intense criticism in Silicon Valley, considering that it came in one of worst moments of the Republican nominee, after numerous woman made allegations of sexual assault against him.
In fact, the former CEO of Reddit, Ellen Pao, announced on Monday that Project Include, an organization that promotes diversity in the tech industry, cut ties with Y Combinator since the startup accelerator didn't fire Peter Thiel, according to Forbes.
"Thiel's actions are in direct conflict with our values at Project Include. We agree that people shouldn't be fired for their political views, but this isn't a disagreement on tax policy; this is advocating hatred and violence. And donating $1.25 million is a lot more than speech," Pao wrote on Monday.