On January 6, supporters of US President Trump stormed the Capitol, among them were declared neo-Nazis. In the meantime, it is becoming increasingly clear in the incidents that there were numerous indications of this coup attempt, these were ignored or not taken seriously.
The storm of a right-wing mob on the seat of US democracy is and remains not only the number 1 topic of conversation in politics, but the technology world is also involved with the events at the Capitol. In the case of GitHub, however, in a rather controversial way.
“Take care of Nazis”
The march of right-wing extremists and right-wing extremists was also an issue at Microsoft’s GitHub developer platform. Because according to a report by Business Insider, an employee warned his colleagues who work in the Washington DC area in a slack chat that they should “stay safe” because the “Nazis are on the loose”.
Thereupon another employee criticized the choice of a “polarizing rhetoric” and this resulted in a heated internal debate in which both sides quickly found support. On the same day, the employee who is Jewish received a reprimand from the GitHub HR department for using the word Nazi. That was not the end of the matter, however, because two days later the employee who wanted to remain anonymous for fear of online harassment was fired.
The employee doesn’t understand why he was fired and wrote via Slack: “I didn’t know that it would be so polarizing as a Jew to say this word.” He grew up saying it: “It was a story that we had to tell – because people who carried this title were responsible for the decimation of entire lineages.”
The dismissal subsequently led to internal protests, around 200 of the total of 1700 employees signed an open letter in which they asked management to express their views and to position themselves more clearly against anti-Semitism and white supremacy.
GitHub CEO Nat Friedman did the same yesterday. He has condemned the storming of the Capitol and also announced a “careful investigation” into the sacking. According to his own statements, the person concerned no longer wants to be reinstated anyway – because the culture in the IT industry is too “toxic”.