Apple CEO Tim Cook expressed the importance of engaging with the government in a statement released after his meeting with President-elect Donald Trump Monday.
“We engage when we agree and we engage when we disagree,” Cook said, according to TechCrunch. “I think it’s very important to do that because you don’t change things by just yelling. You change things by showing everyone why your way is the best. In many ways, it’s a debate of ideas.”
Cook joined a number of other tech and business magnates for the meeting with Trump because “governments can affect our ability to do what we do.”
Cook’s sentiment seems to reference, even epitomize, the 2016 election cycle, which was littered with a cacophony of partisan slurs as well as overt suppression of debate.
College campuses all across the country have experienced shocking instances of censorship and people calling for “safe spaces” in order to squash debate that is considered offensive to some.
Students at the University of California-Berkeley, for example, held a protest in October demanding that the school create “safe spaces” for both transgenders and minorities. They created a human chain across one of the campus bridges in order to prevent any non-white students from having access to the overpass.
Rather than “showing everyone why your way is the best” these students wanted to create safe spaces so they didn’t have to hear others’ points of view. (RELATED: Schools Pull ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ From Shelves Over N-Word)
In fact, nearly one in four students expressed a belief that college should not expose students to all types of speech and viewpoints, according to an April Gallup survey.
And as for shouting and bickering, there were a number of instances where public figures tried to “change things by just yelling.” From Fox host Megyn Kelly’s tense interview with former Speaker of the House New Gingrich, to the post-election discussion between Clinton and Trump aides, there are several examples of people shouting in place of actual discourse.
Cook, like much of Silicon Valley, seemed to show more support for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton than Trump. Cook stumped for Clinton along with several members of Hollywood Elite in August, but also hosted a breakfast for Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan in June. (RELATED: Apple CEO Sends Consoling Letter To All Employees After Trump Win)
Regardless of his political leanings, Cook feels it is in Apple’s best interest to communicate with the government, especially the president, on issues like intellectual property reform, simplifying the tax system, and creating more jobs.
“There’s a large number of those issues, and the way that you advance them is to engage,” Cook said of his meeting with Trump. “We very much stand up for what we believe in. We think that’s a key part of what Apple is about. And we’ll continue to do so.”
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