Elon Musk's Mum Hits Back At Claims He Grew Up Sheltered From South African Apartheid
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Elon Musk's mum has hit back at an American news outlet for criticising her son.
The tech billionaire's $44 billion Twitter takeover has been cross-examined by The New York Times, with an article calling into question his hopes to bring free speech to the platform after growing up in apartheid-state South Africa.
The article from the news outlet claimed: "Elon Musk’s impending takeover of Twitter has many people probing his public statements and his past for clues about how he will shape one of the world’s most influential public platforms.
The New York Times: "Elon Musk didn't end apartheid in South Africa as a child, therefore he is evil now."— Tim Young (@TimRunsHisMouth) May 5, 2022
"But Mr. Musk, best known for owning the companies Tesla and SpaceX, has not talked much in public about a significant swath of his past: How growing up as a white person under the racist apartheid system in South Africa may have shaped him."
In the article, The NYT interviewed Musk's relatives and classmates, revealing that the Tesla CEO grew up in communities shrouded in misinformation that influenced its residents.
"We were really clueless as white South African teenagers. Really clueless," a former classmate told the NYT.
The article told how white South Africans that were hoodwinked by the government's propaganda campaign, with newspapers arriving to readers with whole sections blacked-out.
Ah yes, the 10-year old Elon must be held responsible for the evils of Apartheid because he bought Twitter 30 years after the end of Apartheid. All makes sense ..... https://t.co/pEmvKz2Rzr— Sanjeev Sanyal (@sanjeevsanyal) May 5, 2022
But, ultimately, it suggested growing up in this environment may have shaped Musk's view of the world and therefore Musk's intense defence of free speech on Twitter.
The article, headlined 'Elon Musk left a South Africa that was rife with misinformation and white privilege', has ruffled feathers around the globe.
Elon's mother hit back at the accusation and wrote on Twitter: "In South Africa, if you publicly opposed apartheid, you went to jail.
"In Russia, if you publicly oppose the war, you go to jail. @nytimes, are you going to blame children for decisions made by governments?"
Well, it just goes to show that even if your son is a 50-year-old tech billionaire, mothers will always defend their young.
But it wasn't just Maye Musk who was upset at the article.
In South Africa, if you publicly opposed apartheid, you went to jail. In Russia, if you publicly oppose the war, you go to jail. @nytimes are you going to blame children for decisions made by governments? #StopTheWar 🇺🇦 https://t.co/4wJt1ui0st— Maye Musk (@mayemusk) May 5, 2022
One social media user said: "Ah yes, the 10-year old Elon must be held responsible for the evils of Apartheid because he bought Twitter 30 years after the end of Apartheid. All makes sense."
A second added: "The New York Times: 'Elon Musk didn't end apartheid in South Africa as a child, therefore he is evil now.'"
A third said: "I can't believe Elon thought it would be a good idea to be born in apartheid South Africa. A baby with a stronger moral character would have refused to come out until they moved to a more equitable nation.
Musk has put freedom of speech as one of the big focuses for his takeover of Twitter.