Reshma Saujani was already appalled by the positions Donald Trump espoused when he was inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States. But for a few short days after he entered the White House, the founder and CEO of Girls Who Code believed it was worth working with the Trump administration despite seemingly insurmountable differences.
That all changed when he signed the first version of a “Muslim ban” he’d promised on the campaign trail, blocking Syrian refugees from entering the country and temporarily banning entry to people traveling from seven Muslim-majority countries. That action cemented her belief that the Trump administration was not a worthy partner, and moreover, that it should be shunned. Saujani described why in an elegant op-ed published by The New York Times on Thursday.
“I do not believe this initiative—nor any partnership with this White House—can reverse the harm this administration has already done in attempting to legitimize intolerance,” she wrote in “The Case for Shunning the White House,” explaining why she rejected Ivanka Trump’s invitation for Girls Who Code to participate in a computer science education initiative. “Indeed, collaborating with this administration, on any issue, emboldens it only further.”
Saujani—a lawyer and politician who served as the deputy public advocate in New York City and ran for the public advocate position as well as for Congress—founded Girls Who Code in 2012. The nonprofit organization’s…