The WSJ’s Coverage of South Carolina Shooting Angers Slack CEO

June 22, 2015

7:00 pm

The country was yet again rocked by an incidence of gun violence last week when a tragic shooting took place in a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina that left nine people dead. In what has been widely proclaimed as a racially-motivated massacre across several media outlets, The Wall Street Journal last Thursday published an editorial piece that – in contrast to that argument (and to the evidence supporting that argument) – expressed that the Charleston shooting was caused by a “problem that defies explanation.” And, for Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield, such a response warranted a big old “fuck you” – one of several statements made in a tweetstorm on Sunday.

According to the WSJ editorial, President Obama’s comparison of the shooting to the September 1963 bombing of a church in Birmingham, AL was inaccurate, and instead claiming that we’ve moved past institutionalized racism and into an era of post-racialism: “Today the system and philosophy of institutionalized racism identified by Dr. King no longer exists.” Butterfield – who, aside from running a company valued at nearly $3 billion, also holds a Masters in philosophy from Cambridge – was not at all pleased by the editorial, and penned a series of tweets on Sunday night to express his frustrations. Below, you’ll find the string of tweets lambasting The Wall Street Journal:


Earlier today, South Carolina Governor, Nikki Haley, called for the removal of the Confederate flag from the state Capitol building – which has continued to fly in the face of many criticisms from victims’ families, community members, and several state officials.

(H/T Business Insider)

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Ronald Barba was the previous managing editor of Tech.Co. His primary story interests include industry trends, consumer-facing apps/products, the startup lifestyle, business ethics, diversity in tech, and what-is-this-bullsh*t things. Aside from writing about startups and entrepreneurship, Ronald is interested in 'Doctor Who', Murakami, 'The Mindy Project', and fried chicken. He is currently based in New York because he mistakenly studied philosophy in college and is now a "writer". Tweet @RonaldPBarba.

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