It is becoming more apparent every day that Trump’s unconstitutional immigration ban isn’t solely for political purposes. Instead, it’s personal. But as the tension rises, the tech industry is currently facing a dilemma. Tech, more than any other field, is capable of going on the full opposition of the Trump administration’s policies. But consequences for doing so could be costly.
We’re already seeing tech titans speak out publicly against Trump’s policy, especially his immigration order. Many tech giants such as Apple and Amazon are considering pursuing legal action. We’re already seeing the influence of employees and protesters after Uber CEO Travis Kalanick agreed to be on Trump’s economic advisory council, and refusing to comply the protest by New York taxi unions, the hashtag #deleteuber began trending. As a result, Kalanick resigned from Trump’s economic advisory council.
“Joining the group was not intended as an endorsement of the president or his agenda, but unfortunately it has been misinterpreted to be exactly that,” Kalanick declared in an email sent to Uber employees which the New York Times obtained.
Opposing the president carries potential risks, particularly for publicly traded companies, which may see a legal obligation to prioritize profit over the protest. “For companies that are acting in their self-interest, the process is sitting down and look at this matrix, and trying to figure out how to be effective,” stated Andrew McLaughlin, a venture partner at Betaworks and deputy chief tech officer of the United States under the Obama administration.