Ben Curtis, AKA the "Dude, you're getting a Dell" guy, served as Dell Computer's pitchman for years and remains one of the most iconic symbols of the company. Yesterday, Dell CEO Michael Dell insisted on remaining part of a (now-dissolved) presidential council while many others resigned in protest following Trump's vigorous defence of a white supremacist rally that left a young woman dead. So we decided to ask the former face of the company how he feels about the situation.
US President Donald Trump angrily defended the torch-bearing racists who stormed the city of Charlottesville, Virginia, this weekend to participate in the white supremacist rally that culminated in the tragic slaying of 32-year-old Heather Hayer.
Contacted by Gizmodo over email, Curtis informed us that he's still acting and most recently starred in his third off-Broadway play, "The Crusade of Connor Stephens". The horrifying events of last weekend in Charlottesville have clearly been on Curtis's mind. When we asked about his personal feelings regarding Trump's response to the tragedy, he had this to say:
I am saddened, disheartened and disgusted by Trumps remarks as the presiding leader of our country. His job is to preside. That's what being a president means: to stand up and speak out against what is wrong and to be an example of what is right. He has yet to do any of this. In fact he has done quite the opposite and therefore is failing at his job. I believe he should be impeached for the sake and safety our country and the people of the United States of America.
This week, numerous CEOs who sat on Trump's American Manufacturing Council publicly declared that they couldn't continue to work with an administration that's so comfortable with bigotry, but many others stuck around, showing that they weren't bothered enough to take action. The council was intended to advise the US president on how to revitalise America's dwindling manufacturing industry and accelerate growth. Kenneth C. Frazier, the CEO of Merck Pharmaceuticals, kicked off the wave of resignations on Tuesday, saying, "America's leaders must honour our fundamental values by clearly rejecting expressions of hatred, bigotry, and group supremacy."
This morning, Trump announced that he's dissolving the council rather than put any further "pressure on the business people". It appears that the CEOs who said they'd be staying, such as Michael Dell, will not have a chance to rethink their options. When we asked Curtis how he felt about Dell's continued support of the administration, he told us this:
Dell and Michael Dell always treated me very well. I can't speak towards their values as I was simply a spokesperson for their campaign but they were always very kind and respectful to me. I hope they decide to follow the values and morals that our country was founded on: Equality, diversity and truth.
Curtis shows himself to be a man of character who still regards his former boss with fondness, but refuses to support Trump's reckless disregard for human decency. If only we could say the same for Michael Dell.