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Business News/ Companies / News/  Elon Musk vs Mark Cuban: Billionaires clash over diversity initiative in US firms
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Elon Musk vs Mark Cuban: Billionaires clash over diversity initiative in US firms

The exchange between Musk and Cuban got intense after Musk criticized DEI and labeled it as 'literally the definition of racism' in a post on X.

Elon Musk, Chief Executive Officer of SpaceX and Tesla and owner of X, formerly known as Twitter. (File) (REUTERS)Premium
Elon Musk, Chief Executive Officer of SpaceX and Tesla and owner of X, formerly known as Twitter. (File) (REUTERS)

Tesla founder Elon Musk has been active on social media and recently engaged in a spat with Shark Tank fame and NBA's Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban over the issue of Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives in American corporations.

The exchange between Musk and Cuban got intense after Musk criticized DEI and labeled it as 'literally the definition of racism' in a post on X.

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Musk wrote, “DEI is just another word for racism. Shame on anyone who uses it."

Following this Cuban responded to the post. He added, “You may not agree, but I take it as a given that there are people of various races, ethnicities, orientation, etc that are regularly excluded from hiring consideration. By extending our hiring search to include them, we can find people that are more qualified."

In a separate tweet, Cuban wrote, “If you don't think there is a need for DEI and it doesn't create a competitive advantage for your company, just look at the @x posts/replies/quotes below. These are the same people who work for you or are your co-workers. Everyone is entitled to their POV, but these same feelings, even if they are not said out loud, are heard loud and clear at work."

Countering Cuban, Musk questioned when the Dallas Mavericks would include 'short white/Asian women' on their team. To this, Cuban retorted with a link to an ESPN story from April 2013 where he highlighted Brittney Griner. She is a 2-time gold medalist with the US women's national basketball team.

In another tweet, Musk suggested that 'if merit for a given job is roughly the same, then the tiebreaker should be diversity (of all kinds)'.

The clash between the two billionaires was sparked by an essay written by Bill Ackman – hedge fund tycoon and Harvard University donor – where he expressed his opposition to DEI, suggesting it must be stopped.

In the essay, Ackman was speaking about resignation of Claudine Gay, Harvard's first Black President. According to critics, she secured the position due to the institute's focus on diversity rather than merit or credentials, reported NDTV.

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Published: 09 Jan 2024, 04:17 PM IST
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