Tesla CEO Elon Musk suffered a backlash after sharing a satirical tweet comparing Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler in the wake of the ongoing ‘Freedom Convoy’ protests, launched by those against the COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
Musk was responding to a Twitter post by the trade publication CoinDesk which reported that the Canadian government was cracking down on crypto transactions aimed at helping the truckers protesting vaccine mandates.
The chief executive of Tesla tweeted a meme that showed a photo of Hitler with the words “Stop comparing me to Justin Trudeau” above the image and “I had a budget” below.
The tweet, which Musk deleted about 12 hours after he posted it, was criticized by other Twitter users, one of whom wrote: “This is extremely poor taste, not a good look at all, there is [a] better way to make an argument.”
The American Jewish Committee issued a statement condemning Musk’s tweet. “Once again, Elon Musk has exercised extremely poor judgment by invoking Hitler to make a point on social media. He must stop this unacceptable behavior,” the AJC said. “Musk may believe posting a meme comparing Justin Trudeau to a genocidal dictator who exterminated millions is an appropriate way to criticize policies he disagrees with. It is not. It never is.
The group added: “Musk must apologize and find other ways to voice his displeasure.”
Musk did not respond to the AJC or the Auschwitz-Birkenau museum, but posted another tweet that suggested his Twitter followers read a book about the economic history of Nazi Germany for “an in-depth explanation”.
The world’s richest man has frequently spoken out in favour of the Canadian trucker protests against Covid-19 mandates. Last month he posted a photo of the long line of trucks and tweeted: “Canadian truckers rule”. In another post he said: “If Canadian government is suppressing peaceful protests, that’s where fascism lies.”
Musk has ties to Canada. His mother, Maye Musk, is a Canadian national. The Tesla boss moved with his family to Canada from his native South Africa at a young age. He then relocated to the United States as a young adult to pursue his studies at the University of Pennsylvania.