Mark Zuckerberg said in a post today that Muslims would always be welcome on Facebook, seemingly adding his own voice to the backlash against presidential candidate Donald Trump, who recently proposed that the U.S. close its borders to Muslims.
“I want to add my voice in support of Muslims in our community and around the world,” Zuckerberg wrote in the brief post. “After the Paris attacks and hate this week, I can only imagine the fear Muslims feel that they will be persecuted for the actions of others.”
“As a Jew, my parents taught me that we must stand up against attacks on all communities. Even if an attack isn’t against you today, in time attacks on freedom for anyone will hurt everyone.
If you’re a Muslim in this community, as the leader of Facebook I want you to know that you are always welcome here and that we will fight to protect your rights and create a peaceful and safe environment for you.
Having a child can radically change one’s perspective on life, and many of Zuckerberg’s recent statements indeed seem to have a new tone to them. From the statement today:
“Having a child has given us so much hope, but the hate of some can make it easy to succumb to cynicism. We must not lose hope. As long as we stand together and see the good in each other, we can build a better world for all people.”
Trump lit off a storm of criticism with his suggestion to close the U.S. borders to Muslims, made during a campaign speech. Rebukes from Democrats and media were swift and loud. His comments drew criticism from even the most far-right players, including Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and even former vice president Dick Cheney.
“I think this whole notion that somehow we can just say no more Muslims, just ban a whole religion, goes against everything we stand for and believe in,” the former VP said on a conservative radio show Monday. “I mean, religious freedom has been a very important part of our history and where we came from,” he added. “A lot of people, my ancestors got here, because they were Puritans.”
At the same time, some have questioned whether Facebook and other Internet companies have done enough to prevent terror organizations from using their platforms for communication and coordination.
Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton recently called on Facebook and others for help in shutting down the social networking activities of terror groups.