On Feb. 13, the New York Times reported that the Gates’, in their annual update on the work of the Gates Foundation, said the already hefty list of scandals, outrageous comments and incompetence, which seems to grow on a daily basis, emanating from the Trump White House is affecting their efforts around the globe negatively.

Philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates say the outrageous nature of the Trump administration make their work more difficult. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Specifically, the Gates said Trump’s comments referring to African nations as “sh*thole countries” have been of great concern among many people outside of the United States.

“Those disparaging comments don’t belong in any public discourse,” said Melinda Gates during a recent joint interview with her husband. “That’s not how we teach our kids to speak. So, it’s discouraging to hear that kind of talk,” she added.

Trump has roiled so many globally, his offenses earned a special section in the Gates’ 10th annual report published February 13.

“I wish our president would treat people, and especially women, with more respect when he speaks and tweets,” wrote Melinda Gates.

Bill Gates said he was worried about Trump’s pledge to significantly slash foreign aid, which he says is critical to the Gates Foundation’s global efforts to combat disease and poverty. Bill Gates, the co-founder of Microsoft, a pioneer in the tech industry and one of the wealthiest men in the world, added he and his wife have increased meetings with Republicans in Congress to emphasize the importance of U.S. foreign aid.

“Although we disagree with this administration more than the others we’ve met with, we believe it’s still important to work together whenever possible,” he stated in the annual report. “We keep talking to them because if the U.S. cuts back on its investments abroad, people in other countries will die, and Americans will be worse off.”

The Gates Foundation, believed to be the largest philanthropic organization in the world, has given away $41 billion since its inception in 2000 to 2016.


Sean Yoes

AFRO Baltimore Editor