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Amid insistence that corporations aren’t people, celebration ensues after one guy gets run out of Mozilla

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By Doug Powers  •  April 4, 2014 09:43 AM

**Written by Doug Powers

Former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich has resigned (“forced to resign” might be a better way to put it). Why? Some people were angry after it was discovered that in 2008 Eich donated $1,000 to support California’s Prop 8 in favor of traditional marriage. Around the same time Eich cut a check to support Prop 8, many of the people who were this week calling for Eich’s head were energetically campaigning for Barack Obama, who back then held the same view on the issue as Eich.

This is from Mozilla’s explanation about why they not only accepted Eich’s resignation, but more than likely were good enough to write it for him:

Mozilla believes both in equality and freedom of speech. Equality is necessary for meaningful speech. And you need free speech to fight for equality. Figuring out how to stand for both at the same time can be hard.

That’s not exactly a Jeffersonian defense of free speech, and it’s not as if Eich was walking around the office every day handing out pamphlets containing his religious and political views or threatening the jobs of those who disagreed with him (the latter is apparently the board chair’s responsibility).

It’s been asked if atheist CEOs should be forced out if their opinion offends religious employees. The Mozilla “free speech” test would probably bring about the answer, “if the religious employees are opposed to gay marriage, then no.”

The real Eich dilemma for those whose protest and boycott had a hand in getting him run out of Mozilla is this: Eich created JavaScript, which, in spite of Eich’s Prop 8 support six years ago, is still in use — on Al Gore’s progressive Internet. OkCupid, the dating site that played a part in Eich’s exit from Mozilla, runs on JavaScript. Every time a couple hooks up, Brendan Eich gets a dollar. Sleep well, OkCupid!

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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