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Politics / Social justice / Venture capital

First Round Capital: ‘We are worried about the American dream’

In a Medium post published Wednesday, the Philly venture firm joined the tech industry's pushback on President Trump's recent executive order.

U.S. flags. (Photo by Flickr user Arden, under a Creative Commons license)

In a Medium post published on Wednesday, the leadership of First Round Capital declared a firm stance against Trump’s so-called “Muslim ban,” deeming the policy “unjust” and “amoral.”

“We believe it does not reflect American values, is antithetical to how our country became the world’s largest economy and most desired environment to practice business, and will diminish our long standing position of global leadership,” the company wrote in the article, titled “We are worried about the American dream.”

The firm, a defacto part of the Silicon Valley elite despite its University City headquarters, also pointed to the economic implications of the ban, saying it “meaningfully limits” its ability to fulfill its mission.

“The First Round team is committed to doing our part both now and going forward,” the letter states. “We have signed our names publicly to this letter to Trump, contributed meaningfully to legal action supporting detainees across the country and are committed to a monthly recurring donation to the American Civil Liberties Union.”

Read the full letter

First Round’s statement comes at a time when one of its portfolio companies, Uber, is facing some backlash. See, the company kept its service running at New York’s JFK Airport as cab companies went on strike as a sign of protest against the ban. Social networks then blazed up and #DeleteUber quickly rose to the top of Twitter’s Trending Topics. It also didn’t help that CEO Travis Kalanick was part of President Donald Trump’s advisory board — though he stepped down Wednesday afternoon.

Though the venture firm has kept quiet about the backlash, managing partner Josh Kopelman did share an article on his Twitter account titled “Uber didn’t deserve #DeleteUber.” He also has this pinned on his Twitter feed, which is also featured in a letter signed by dozens of Philly technologists and their families.

Companies: First Round Capital / Uber

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