Apple CEO Tim Cook strongly condemned the violence at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia over the weekend, explicitly labelling it ‘white supremacy’ and ‘racist violence’ in a tweet on Monday.
“We’ve seen the terror of white supremacy & racist violence before. It’s a moral issue – an affront to America. We must all stand against it,” he tweeted.
This was his second message about the “Unite The Right” rally in Charlottesville on Saturday.
Cook joins other business leaders who have offered strong condemnation of the violence in Charlottesville, which left three dead on Saturday.
Pepsi’s CEO, Indra Nooyi, tweeted about the clash on Monday, calling it “hate and intolerance.” Tech company Twilio added hate speech as a prohibited term and condition for its service as well.
Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier stepped down from President Trump’s manufacturing committee over the White House’s tepid response to the events, which did not reject the white nationalist ideologies of the organising groups.
Cook has personally seen racist demonstrations in the south. When he was a child, he saw the Klu Klux Klan burning a cross on a neighbour’s lawn in Alabama, according to the Washington Post.
He spoke about witnessing the cross burning in a speech at Auburn University in 2013:
“Not far from where I lived, I remember very vividly witnessing a cross burning at such a remarkable family. This image was permanently imprinted in my brain, and it would change my life forever. For me the cross burning was a symbol of ignorance, of hatred, and a fear of anyone different than the majority. I could never understand it, and I knew then that America’s and Alabama’s history would always be scarred by the hatred that it represented.”
We’ve seen the terror of white supremacy & racist violence before. It’s a moral issue – an affront to America. We must all stand against it
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) August 14, 2017
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