Apple CEO condemns Trump and sends $1m to ADL

In memo to staff, Tim Cook said: 'I disagree with the president'


Tim Cook has become the latest wealthy American to put his money where his mouth is in condemnation of President Donald Trump, donating $1 million each to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) in the wake of the President’s comments on the white supremacist marches in Charlottesville last weekend.

In a note to employees, the Apple CEO said: "I disagree with the president and others who believe that there is a moral equivalence between white supremacists and Nazis, and those who oppose them by standing up for human rights.”

The memo continued: “Regardless of your political views, we must all stand together on this one point that we are all equal. As a company, through our actions, our products and our voice, we will always work to ensure that everyone is treated equally and with respect.”

Mr Cook said that in addition to the $1 million he will send to both the ADL and SPLC, he will match two-for-one any donations made by Apple employees to the organisations or other human rights groups before the end of September.

Reuters reported that Mr Cook’s letter came hours after Mr Trump disbanded two high-profile business advisory councils as several chief executives quit in protest over his remarks blaming weekend violence in Charlottesville, Virginia on anti-racism activists as well as white nationalists that left a 32-year-old woman dead.

"What occurred in Charlottesville has no place in our country,” Mr Cook’s letter continued. “Hate is a cancer, and left unchecked it destroys everything in its path. Its scars last generations. History has taught us this time and time again, both in the United States and countries around the world."

On Sunday, the actor and politician Arnold Schwarzenegger donated $100,000 to the Simon Wiesenthal Center in response to the violence in Charlottesville.

Prominent Jewish figures in the US continued to air their condemnation of the President, including those from the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC), a political lobbying group that describes itself as "unique bridge between the Jewish community and Republican decision-makers".

In a statement signed by RJC National Chairman Senator Norm Coleman and the Executive Director Matt Brooks, the organisation called upon Mr Trump to "provide greater moral clarity in rejecting racism, bigotry and antisemitism".

The statement said: "The Nazis, the KKK, and white supremacists are dangerous anti-Semites...As representatives of the party whose founder, Abraham Lincoln, broke the shackles of slavery, and of an organisation with many members who experienced firsthand the inhumanity of the Nazi Holocaust, we state unequivocally our rejection of these hatemongers - you can expect no less from the Republican Jewish Coalition."

Even closer to home, the rabbi who oversaw Ivanka Trump's conversion to Judaism said he was "deeply troubled by the moral equivalency and equivocation [of] President Trump".

Haskel Lookstein, rabbi emeritus at the Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun synagogue in Manhattan - attended by Mr Trump's daughter and her husband Jared Kushner before they relocated to Washington DC - was one of several rabbis who signed a letter to members of the synagogue in which they discussed the Charlottesville violence.

“We are appalled by this resurgence of bigotry and antisemitism, and the renewed vigour of the neo-Nazis, KKK, and alt-right,” the letter said. “We pray that our country heeds the voices of tolerance, and stays true to its vision of human rights and civil rights.”

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