After President Donald Trump signed an executive order restricting immigration from seven predominantly Muslim nations, SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk turned to Twitter to voice his frustrations.
The billionaire entrepreneur usually abstains from making his political opinions known, especially on social media, with the exception of the occasional shout-out to climate science. However, it seems that Trump's anti-immigrant sentiment struck a nerve this time.
Trump's executive order, which he signed Friday (Jan. 27), suspends immigration of refugees from war-torn countries around the world for 120 days while indefinitely barring everyone in Syria from entering the United States regardless of immigration status. People in six additional countries with Muslim-majority populations are also banned from the U.S. for 90 days. [IAU 'Profoundly Concerned' About Trump's Immigration Ban]
On Saturday (Jan. 28), one day after Trump signed the executive order, Musk began to tweet his thoughts on the new immigration restrictions. He wrote that the executive action "is not the best way to address the country's challenges," and pointed out that many people are unfairly affected by the policy.
To combat the new order without outright rejecting it, Musk has asked his Twitter followers to read the full text of the executive order and come up with ideas to amend it. While several of his followers called for a repeal, Musk, who became an adviser to Trump in December, feels that an amendment would be more feasible.
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Hanneke Weitering is a multimedia journalist in the Pacific Northwest reporting on the future of aviation at FutureFlight.aero and Aviation International News and was previously the Editor for Spaceflight and Astronomy news here at Space.com. As an editor with over 10 years of experience in science journalism she has previously written for Scholastic Classroom Magazines, MedPage Today and The Joint Institute for Computational Sciences at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. After studying physics at the University of Tennessee in her hometown of Knoxville, she earned her graduate degree in Science, Health and Environmental Reporting (SHERP) from New York University. Hanneke joined the Space.com team in 2016 as a staff writer and producer, covering topics including spaceflight and astronomy. She currently lives in Seattle, home of the Space Needle, with her cat and two snakes. In her spare time, Hanneke enjoys exploring the Rocky Mountains, basking in nature and looking for dark skies to gaze at the cosmos.