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Mozilla CEO Responds to Prop 8 Controversy

by Jason St. Amand
National News Editor
Sunday Mar 30, 2014

Brendan Eich, the new CEO of Mozilla, took to his blog Wednesday after drawing ire from two gay married technology developers who called for a boycott against a software company that created the popular web browser Firefox, because of a donation Eich made in 2008 to support the Proposition 8 campaign.

Though he didn't specifically say if his views on gay marriage have changed in the last six years, Eich writes about the issue in a blog post called "Inclusiveness at Mozilla" and says:

"I am deeply honored and humbled by the CEO role. I'm also grateful for the messages of support. At the same time, I know there are concerns about my commitment to fostering equality and welcome for LGBT individuals at Mozilla. I hope to lay those concerns to rest, first by making a set of commitments to you. More important, I want to lay them to rest by actions and results. A number of Mozillians, including LGBT individuals and allies, have stepped forward to offer guidance and assistance in this. I cannot thank you enough, and I ask for your ongoing help to make Mozilla a place of equality and welcome for all... I know some will be skeptical about this, and that words alone will not change anything. I can only ask for your support to have the time to 'show, not tell'; and in the meantime express my sorrow at having caused pain."

Earlier this week, Hampton Catlin and his husband Michael Catlin said they will boycott Firefox, because of Eich's $1,000 donation to Prop 8 efforts, until Eich is either fired or announces his views have changed on same-sex marriage.

"Today we were shocked to read that Brendan Eich has been appointed Mozilla CEO," the developers said in a statement. "As a gay couple who were unable to get married in California until recently, we morally cannot support a Foundation that would not only leave someone with hateful views in power, but will give them a promotion and put them in charge of the entire organization."

On Wednesday Eich's boss, Mozilla chairwoman Mitchell Baker, also responded to the controversy in her blog:

"Mozilla's commitment to inclusiveness for our LGBT community, and for all underrepresented groups, will not change. Acting for or on behalf of Mozilla, it is unacceptable to limit opportunity for *anyone* based on the nature of sexual orientation and/or gender identity. This is not only a commitment, it is our identity. This commitment is a key requirement for all leadership within Mozilla, including for the CEO, and Brendan shares this commitment as the new Chief Executive Officer... The CEO role is obviously a key role, with a large amount of authority. The CEO must have a commitment to the inclusive nature of Mozilla. This includes of course a commitment to the Community Participation Guidelines, inclusive HR practices and the spirit that underlies them. Brendan has made this commitment. Finally, I've been asked a few times about my own personal views, and so I'll add a short comment... I am an avid supporter of equal rights for all. I support equal rights for the LGBT community, I support equal rights for underrepresented groups, and I have some pretty radical views about the role of underrepresented groups in social institutions. I was surprised in 2012, when his donation in support of Proposition 8 came to light, to learn that Brendan and I aren't in close alignment here, since I've never seen any indication of anything other than inclusiveness in our work together."


  • Bob K, 2014-03-28 03:49:20

    HORSE SHIT -- "I’m sorry it hurt when I stabbed you in the eye". This graduate of VERY catholic Santa Clara U refused to renounce the evil work of his church and its bishops. BUT foolish Gays are bitching at him, rather than picketing the residence of Cordileone, who was rewarded for Prop 8 by being made archibish-queen of San Francisco.

  • MNrainbow, 2014-03-29 16:16:17

    Companies need to stop promoting and covering up for bigots! Its time to expose and get rid of these people, no more excuses!

  • , 2014-04-02 08:40:54

    This man has EVERY right to believe in whatever he wants and donate to organizations he believes in. You have my full support Mr. Eich and I hope that others will come out and support you also. Christians have the SAME rights and privileges in this country as the LGBT community.

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