Politics don’t belong in tech industry


Condoleezza Rice talks with caddies and golfer Bernhard Langer during the Par 3 Contest before the Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga., April 9, 2014.

Condoleezza Rice. By all accounts, she’s a sharp lady. She served as secretary of state during the Bush years, taught political science at Stanford, and was one of the first women admitted to the Augusta National Golf Club.

Recently, Rice has ventured into the tech industry. People have not responded well to this news.

On April 9, PC Magazine reported that Dropbox CEO Drew Houston was appointing Condoleezza to the company’s Board of Directors.

Predictably, because of her past work with the federal government, the internet exploded in a childish rage.

On Twitter, one user said Dropbox and its product were “dead to me,” all because they appointed Rice to its board of directors. He went on to call her a saleswoman for the war in Iraq and a foe of privacy rights.

On the company’s Facebook page, another commenter urged the company to drop her. He called her a torture-loving warmonger, which is a bit harsh.

People may not like what Rice did during her years in government, and that’s fine, but that doesn’t mean she can’t have a life.

Stewing over old wounds and past events does not help society. In the world we live in today, time would be better spent on innovating. I don’t care that much about the Iraq War to let it bother me.

In addition to Condoleezza, another person who was recently mistreated in the tech industry because of his political beliefs is former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich.

On March 31, The Wire reported that popular dating site OkCupid blocked access to its site for users of Mozilla’s Firefox browser.

On OkCupid’s homepage, it revealed that Eich made a $1,000 donation to the Proposition 8 campaign, which banned gay marriage in California in 2008. The outrage ensued, and Eich was unfairly ousted.

He should not have been. Eich was not a virulently homophobic individual. He was not out in the streets saying gay people deserved to die nor was he protesting at anyone’s funerals.

The man made a private donation that was not publicly disclosed for years. He should not have been ousted for speaking freely, but sadly he was.

If people are not saying violently racist, sexist or homophobic things, or in a position where they can screw up the country, I don’t care what they believe. This is not Riyadh.

In America, people don’t deserve to be harassed for the things they believe. Shame on Firefox and shame on users of Dropbox, they need to grow up and respect other people.

– Evan Pretzer is a junior communication major from from Weyburn, Saskatchewan. He can be contacted at 335-2290 or by opinion@dailyevergreen.com. The opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily those of the staff of The Daily Evergreen or those of Student Publications.