AFTER surviving the swarm of pageant analysts, let us give the organizers of the Miss Universe pageant a much-deserved warm applause—the Department of Tourism, the tourism private sector and others behind the scenes who partnered and labored for months to make the event a success. You make us proud. Salute to a job well done.
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Sad to see the long list of PNP officials and personnel involved in the drug trade who unfairly besmirched the institution’s image and their ranks, especially those who are honest and dedicated to their mandated tasks. We can only say now as an afterthought that the war against drugs could have been more effective if they jumpstarted the campaign by internal cleansing first before declaring an all-out war against politicians and civilians.
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I am devoting the rest of my column to collating the reactions on Google, Microsoft, Apple and Facebook on recent US immigration policies.
Letter of Apple CEO Tim Cook to his employees:
In my conversations with officials here in Washington this week, I’ve made it clear that Apple believes deeply in the importance of immigration—both to our company and to our nation’s future. Apple would not exist without immigration, let alone thrive and innovate the way we do.
I’ve heard from many of you who are deeply concerned about the executive order issued yesterday restricting immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries. I share your concerns. It is not a policy we support.
There are employees at Apple who are directly affected by yesterday’s immigration order. Our HR, Legal and Security teams are in contact with them, and Apple will do everything we can to support them. We’re providing resources on AppleWeb for anyone with questions or concerns about immigration policies. And we have reached out to the White House to explain the negative effect on our coworkers and our company.
As I’ve said many times, diversity makes our team stronger. And if there’s one thing I know about the people at Apple, it’s the depth of our empathy and support for one another. It’s as important now as it’s ever been, and it will not weaken one bit. I know I can count on all of you to make sure everyone at Apple feels welcome, respected and valued.
Apple is open. Open to everyone, no matter where they come from, which language they speak, who they love or how they worship. Our employees represent the finest talent in the world, and our team hails from every corner of the globe.
In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, “We may have all come on different ships, but we are in the same boat now.
Speech of Google Co-Founder Sergey Brin:
“I’m glad to see the energy here today and around the world to know that people are fighting for what’s right out there. I think it’s important to not frame this debate as being ‘liberal’ versus ‘Republican’ and so forth. It’s a debate about fundamental values, about thoughtful policymaking and many of the other things that I think are—apparently not universally adored—but I think the vast majority of our country and of our legislators and so forth support.
But in all seriousness, so many people were obviously outraged by this order, as am I myself, being an immigrant and a refugee.
I came here to the US at age 6 with my family from the Soviet Union which was at that time the greatest enemy the US had, maybe it still is. It was a dire period, the Cold War, as some people remember it. It was under the threat of nuclear annihilation. And even then, the US had the courage to take me and my family in as refugees.
And I’d say the risks at the time, letting in these foreigners from a land that might spy on you, learn the nuclear secrets on the back…and there were many cases of espionage, those risks were far greater than the terrorism we face today. And nevertheless, this country was brave and welcoming and I wouldn’t be where I am today or have any kind of the life that I have today if this was not a brave country that really stood out and spoke for liberty.
But to fast forward, Saturday night at SFO was a really warm wonderful experience to be honest. I saw so many of you there, I saw so many friends and family there, all with the same spirit. I found that very touching and I’m glad to see the energy here today and around the world to know that people are fighting for what’s right out there.
I think that as we do that, and I’ve spent time talking to Google CEO Sundar Pichai about it and so forth, I think that we need to be smart about it too. And that means bringing in folks who have some different viewpoints and so forth. Maybe it’s somebody who we don’t agree with on climate change. But nevertheless, there are many rational, thoughtful people out there, who maybe they vote Republican, or Democrat or independent, or whatever, but are outraged by these kinds of actions. and it’s important to be welcoming and reach out to them. And in fact, we’ve been working to do exactly that. Some of us might even adopt Pence 2017 bumper stickers.
And I think it’s important to frame it in that way and to be inclusive in that way. and sometimes think that might be really difficult because I know we have many, many different values here that might not be universally shared. But I think these are really special times and I think it’s important to form friendships with many different people.
I hope this energy carries forward in many different ways, beyond what just our company can do, beyond just what company can do, but as really a powerful force and really a powerful moment.”
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella:
“I always come back to two things. One is the enduring principles and values that drive us as a company, that have made us and this country what it is, and my own personal story.
There is no place for bias or bigotry in any society, in any context. That’s where we start from. We will always as a company stand for that diversity and inclusion. And we’ll keep pushing at it, pushing at it, and making progress. That’s core to who we are. That I believe is core to what America is.
I mean, think about it, I am a product of the fundamental greatness of the United States. It is the ingenuity of the American technology that reached me where I was growing up that even made it possible for me to dream of being able to be part of this journey. It is the enlightened immigration policy of this country that even made it possible for me to come here in the first place, and gave me all this opportunity.
And so, I always think about that. I will always advocate for that America that I know and that I’ve experienced.
And we will do that consistently. We’re not going to overreact because of any one incident, but we will always stand for what we believe are these enduring principles that really are going to be about us as a company, but also recognizing that we’re a multinational company that is an American company.”
Facebook founder and Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg:
“Like many of you, I’m concerned about the impact of the recent executive orders signed by President Trump. We need to keep this country safe, but we should do that by focusing on people who actually pose a threat. Expanding the focus of law enforcement beyond people who are real threats would make all Americans less safe by diverting resources, while millions of undocumented folks who don’t pose a threat will live in fear of deportation.
The United States is a nation of immigrants, and we should be proud of that. We should also keep our doors open to refugees and those who need help. That’s who we are.”
Good work, good deeds and good faith to all.