Your point that Apple only appoints board members and CEO's according to their ability is patently absurd - witness the fiasco that went by the name of Gil Amelio. More often than not these appointments are made on the basis of friendships between white guys, "old school ties" and so on. I think the point that Jackson is making is that, on the whole, nonwhite people are very much "out of the loop" as far as the real decision making goes, and they have very little chance of getting into the loop until there is a real change of culture in the boardroom.
Your point that Jackson should have included Indians and others in his comments, and by not doing so was being racist himself, is frankly silly. I am Indian, and I realize that he was pointing out that Afro Americans, though enriching American Culture to the extent that they can help sell Apple computers by the use of their images, don't seem to be able to get their hands on the levers of power, even though they have been in America longer than many now fully integrated Americans.
I think your anger betrays a simple truth - that until white Americans can face up to their history and their present, serious concerns about the distribution of power and influence will not be taken seriously.
Harwant Bains, London, England.
While I agree with a lot of what you say I think the point Reverend Jackson may have been making, and one I agree with, is that Apple tries to appropriate the "good vibes" of the people it includes in its advertising and positions itself as a counterculture company. That being the case maybe there is a greater responsibility to live up to since they feel free to profit off the images they use. My question is what the hell do they great people have to do with Apple? Did they work there? No. So stop using other peoples fame and just make a better product at a good price. Image is nothing.
Mark F. Maddrey
Dear Mr. Chaffin,
I was stunned and petrified by your article on Jesse Jackson and I can recall one comment he made some years ago about "Hymietown", meaning a jewish area in NY. Although being European, I keep an open eye on US domestic politics and through the years I've discovered that this sort of backlash from people with african descent. This is to be expected, but in some cases as with Farrakhan and the shocking comment by Jesse (along with his recent attack on Apple) it is nothing but scary.
I wonder if you have so far received any comments on you article from Jesse Jackson himself.
David Igra, Sweden
I do not owe him or his brothers anything!!! Neither does Apple. Being BLACK, let me correct myself, AFRICAN-AMERICAN,jeez.. does not qualify one for special treatment in all cases concerning the work place, or anywhere else for that fact. This discrimination song has been overplayed! It's time for those select few to get off their butts and get on with life. Hey the wars over folks...get over it!!!
All is well with your article , Except !!!! Jews are not a Race !!!! They come in more flavors then Imacs. There are Italian Jews, Chinese Jew's, German Jew's , African Jew's , American Jew's , French Jew's , Mexican Jew's , Spanish Jew's, Hawaiian Jew's , Arab Jew's. Need I go on ?????? Point made, me thinks . Hope you're now less confused then Jessie the biggot .
As a black American and proud Mac user, I just shake my head in amazement about Jesse Jackson's calling Apple a racist company. Oh please! This is the same guy who during the Gulf War declared the US Army racists for sending black soldiers to the front line. Hello Jesse, EVERYBODY there was on the front line--those Scud missiles attacks reached as far as Israel. The Army is based on a volunteer basis, and people from all races still volunteer to serve. Steve Jobs spent a few years in India before starting Apple, and he has Gregory Hines and Sinbad attend the MacWorld expos every year.
Don't sweat Jesse...he lost his touch a long time ago, and he doesn't know Apple Computer from a hole in the ground..
Jesse Jackson is irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. That you mention his pathetic attempt at headline grabbing only gives him credibility. If you want to get your point across, send him copies of your editorial with the question "How many colored people on Microsoft and IBM's board?" as the footer and header. Like many political blowhards, he probably won't dare respond because MS (even though it wouldn't bother troubling itself with such a mover/shaker nebbish) has a lot more dough to sink his reelection campaign than he does to keep it afloat.
While I will agree with you that Jackson's comments are politically motivated, and therefore somewhat opportunistic, I have to admit that (despite my serious commitment to Apple) I have found the 'think different' commodification of true heroes rather nauseating.
To see the likes of Ghandi associated with a product (especially a product which is -- lets face it -- so unobtainable for the members of the third world) I found just a little too much.
Consequently, unlike you I am not going to loose a lot of sleep over Jackson's comments, especially when I usually do not pay too much attention to his grandstanding anyhow (and that is coming from someone that would certainly be considered left of center in the states).