SparkFun is diametrically and unapologetically against the recent presidential executive orders banning refugees and limiting immigrants from primarily Muslim countries. We believe the US is, and has always been, made stronger by the inclusion of many cultures. Without immigration, SparkFun would not exist. We are opposed to President Trump's anti-Muslim sentiments and orders to enforce barriers between us and our neighboring nations, and will continue to do our part to speak out and protect the livelihoods of all the great people that make up this company and our country.

Best regards,

Glenn and Nate

Comments 119 comments

  • Member #394180 / about 7 years ago * / 21

    Amen brothers. Without immigration, not just SparkFun, but the entire USA would not exist. As someone who arrived in this country as a Cold War refugee and spent years on a green card before becoming a naturalized citizen, I cannot understand what is happening today. The only hopeful sign that I see is the number of people protesting the astonishing reversal of American kindness and generosity.

    For all those who think this attack is only on a small group and that it doesn't affect them, remember John Donne's words:

    No man is an island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main; if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as any manner of thy friends or of thine own were; any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind. And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.

  • SparkFun has always been made up of some of the brightest people with some of the most resolute principles. It was true in the beginning and it's still true today. Cheers to you, Glenn and Nate!

    • Miskatonic / about 7 years ago / 1

      Nice to hear your take. Cheers to you as well.

  • OldFar-SeeingArt / about 7 years ago / 15

    There is no fine print on the bottom of the statue of liberty.

    • TheRegnirps / about 7 years ago / 4

      It isn't the law either.

      • Sembazuru / about 7 years ago / 2

        It isn't the law, but it certainly crystallizes the spirit of how many people who built this nation came to originally enter it's borders.

  • rwizard / about 7 years ago / 12

    I have been a customer since September 25, 2006. What I am about to say has nothing to do with whether I happen to agree or disagree with you on any particular point of political view. I intend to keep such views to myself, as this is an inappropriate venue for them. I'm sorry you failed to realize that.

    Why do you think that because we buy from you we want you to share your political views with us? Why inflame a great technical community with an egotistical need to be heard? I have enjoyed being a Sparkfun costumer since your earliest days, and I am flabbergasted that you would be so rude as to inflict politics on your loyal customer base.

    Nothing you have to say here is going to have the slightest impact on events in the real world. NONE. But what you have done is injected a very fractious debate into the very activity in which I seek some refuge from this sort of crap.

    Did your mother never tell you that it was rude to discuss religion or politics in front of guests?

    I think your decision to place this on the site was pointless and egotistical. I am reminded of the death of Organic Gardening magazine being brought on by a new editor who thought that everyone interested in organic gardening needed his political guidance.

    I think you owe your customers an apology, not for your views, but for posting politics in an inappropriate site. We did not come here for this. There are any number of political sites on the internet which are filled with polemics from hotheads of every political stripe. If I want an ulcer, I go to those sites. If I want electronics, I go to electronics sites.

    Please take this **** out of our punchbowl and put your political views on political sites.

  • GCF / about 7 years ago / 12

    Woo! Thank you SparkFun!

  • Member #516066 / about 7 years ago * / 10

    Cancel my account. I will not do business with a company that disrespects the rule of law and defense of our republic. Your regurgitation of the leftist media misrepresentation of the EO demonstrate blind ideology slavery. I regret doing business Sparkfun.

    • "defense of our republic."

      Lieutenant Worf: Sir, the Federation does have enemies. We must seek them out!

      Captain Jean-Luc Picard: Oh, yes. That's how it starts. But the road from legitimate suspicion to rampant paranoia is very much shorter than we think. Something is wrong here, Mister Worf. I don't like what we have become.

      • TheRegnirps / about 7 years ago / 2

        Good source for a moral compass? Soap operas in space.

        • Correct, it's a very good abstraction to the human condition. Takes away all the us-vs-them baggage and shows you how things really are.

    • D0Cpr0ph3t / about 7 years ago / 10

      While I do not agree with Member #516066 on the wording of his post I must agree with him that there was in fact no law broken (at this time). Bans have been put into place in the past. Trump did not break any laws. The courts will decide the legality in the near future. As to whether I agree is an internal conflict.

      However, using a technology blog focused on... well technology to spew political debates now makes me wonder if any other issues in the future may "upset" you. So the Sparkfun tech blog is going to turn into a Huffington Post blog. There are of course many other mediums in which to voice concerns, but this just seems a little hollywood. So in using a podium in which to voice views that quite a few people do not agree with you on is rather cutting your own throat. Again you come off as another group who does not like what they see, right or wrong, uses their wonderful tech blog that I read every day, to now start preaching from. I know I am in the 2% on here but I do have a feeling you may lose customers by using this blog to voice POLITICAL concerns. I look forward to see what pisses you off next.

      • If this feels like a vanity post to you then you're not the intended audience. And I don't mean to be flippant. I just mean to say that while you may see no other reason for posting this than to abuse our reach, we have many customers, suppliers and distributors who need to hear this from us, not just for personal ideological reasons but for business reasons as well.

        This isn't a new direction for the blog, by the way, we've been outspoken about issues that we feel transcend politics in the past.

        • D0Cpr0ph3t / about 7 years ago / 7

          Not the target audience. Just WOW! So far your statement has divided your customer base, I suppose that was the intended idea? I have read this blog for years and backed your company when I can, I am very disappointed that... not only did you choose a technical blog to voice your OPINION but you did it without regard for people who may not agree with your views. Your "target" audience is everyone who reads your posts. I do believe you did this as a vanity post, you are ticked off and like the hollywood elites this is the convenient medium in which you vent. No other tech blog, site or COMPANY has jumped into the fray on this issue and I commend them for their silence and their dedication to technology instead of politics.

          Let’s address the reasons: you needed to get out to your customers, distributors and suppliers. Isn’t there another way to do this? You actually believe that your customers, suppliers and distributors all agree with your viewpoint and be sympathetic to your views? They were actually desperate to understand your viewpoint on this? Again I have not seen this on any other COMPANY website that I deal with and purchase from. Really? That is your excuse? Again I do believe this was a vanity post to ensure the folks knew you were ticked off. Just to clarify your target audience was everyone who visits your COMPANY website, your target responses were exactly what you received. Free speech brother, I understand, the freedom to shop elsewhere is also a response.

          Again I really don't agree with either issue, from either side. One side thinks they “won” everything and the other cannot get over losing. They both have their merits and their issues. I am just upset that you chose to air this out on your COMPANY website. In your subsequent posts it does look like you are glib and flippant regarding the retention of a diverse customer base. Again disappointed.

        • kabram / about 7 years ago / 6

          I've noticed quite a few prominent tech sites write on this issue in the last few days. Coincidence? I think not. I would urge you to reflect on the elitist nature of such commentary, especially after a bitter election full of mud-slinging from both sides has left a country divided, where you get to select what topic to write about and cloak it in "customer, supplier and distributor" concern while maintaining editorial control over comments posted as outlined in your "comment guidelines" link. I'm not disputing your right to do as you please with your website, just the optics of it in the larger context.

        • TheRegnirps / about 7 years ago / 4

          I thought Green Card holders were exempt. The grad students I know all panicked for no reason. Federal law requires the President to do this if he thinks there is a problem. In fact it specifies banning classes of people by religion (which this does not) or any other category.

          Is it a bad idea to know as much about someone coming in, as we do about any citizen who wants to buy a firearm? And talk about going off half-cocked. You folks need to wait till the dust settles and the protest slogans get sorted.

          • Re: Green Card holders. You're wrong, your grad student friends were not panicked without reason. If it weren't for the intervention of a Federal Judge, they would be in the country illegally.

            Senior officials at the Department of Homeland Security initially interpreted Trump's order to not apply to green card holders from the seven banned countries. Trump White House overruled that reading, however, meaning those green card holders were initially barred. But a federal judge in New York temporarily blocked part of Trump's order late on Saturday night, ruling that citizens of the seven countries who hold valid visas and have already arrived in the United States cannot be removed from the United States.

            Re: Knowing as much about refugees and other immigrants as we know about gun owners: Are you suggesting we have gun-show style all-bets-are-off border parties? I'm kidding of course, we already do know as much as can be known about the people who enter our borders. The biggest lie of this whole debate is that we currently have lax immigration standards. We do not.

            Re: You folks need to wait: No.

          • Member #436136 / about 7 years ago / 1

            Green card holders are not, and should not, be exempt. Tashfeen Malik, the Pakistani who assisted her husband Syed Farook in the Saint Bernardino Christmas day attack had a green card. And very little vetting apparently.

          • Member #394180 / about 7 years ago / 1

            DHS officials also thought green card holders were exempt, then orders came from the White House to apply the ruling to them, too. After the protests, public outcry and restraining orders, the White House announced that green card holders would be given "dispensations" after special examinations.

            During some of the examinations, green card holders were pressured to "voluntarily" give up their permanent residencies.

            So no, they were not exempt from the harassment and detentions.

      • Member #394180 / about 7 years ago * / 7

        there was in fact no law broken (at this time)

        Preventing green card holders, aka permanent legal residents, from returning to their US homes is in fact illegal according to multiple federal judges and 16 states attorney generals. Not complying with federal courts orders is also illegal. DHS personnel were documented doing both over the weekend.

    • M-Short / about 7 years ago / 10

      I am sorry you regret doing business with SparkFun. While I understand your frustrations, the right to disrespect the rule of law is an American value that we respect. As it has been said, "I disagree with what you say, but will defend to the death your right to say it." If you want us to cancel your account please email customer service and they can do that, and I will be sorry we have lost a customer.

      • TheRegnirps / about 7 years ago / 4

        What? Are you trying to be funny? Is this a Daily show influence? "the right to disrespect the rule of law is an American value that we respect". The rule of law [is] was the cornerstone of our civilization. If your car is missing, I took it. Don't worry, just trying out your values. Got anything else I might want? Your putting a couple years of your life into acquiring them means nothing to me in this new morality.

        • The rule of law is the cornerstone of our civilization. The right to disrespect such is also. She's not saying you can disobey it, but you can disrespect it.

          Otherwise your country becomes North Korea.

        • M-Short / about 7 years ago / 1

          We have the right to disrespect, but that is very different than disobey. I do not advocate disobeying the law, but we can not cause change if we are not allowed to disrespect. Disrespect for the law is not only allowed but encouraged under the First Amendment (which allows freedom of speech for our non-US readers).

          • kabram / about 7 years ago / 3

            I think you are confusing petitioning against a law (and lawful opposition) with disrespecting a law. Laws are never meant as an object of respect but obedience. Petitioning against the law can be lawful or unlawful (as evidenced by the violent protests during the inauguration).

    • "demonstrate blind ideology slavery."

      A tip:

      You do not gain allies by insulting your fellow man. This merely reinforces their position, and demonstrates to them that you do not have an argument rooted in reality. If you wish to change their minds, present the facts and a reasoned conclusion, and let their brains do the rest.

  • Member #436136 / about 7 years ago / 9

    This hardly seems like the right forum for discussing political issues, but everyone is entitled to their own opinions. Since you brought this up, please let me correct some of the factual misstatements and omissions in your statement.

    1. Contrary to media hyperbole, this is not a Muslim ban. Nearly 40 predominantly muslim countries are completely unaffected by this temporary restriction. The seven countries that are affected are accused by both the former and present administrations as the source of much of the world wide terrorist activity. And even with six of those countries that are affected, the restrictions are only for 90 days until better screening methods can be put into place.

    2. No one, who is not an American citizen, has the legal or constitutional right to come to this nation. This action, although sudden, is completely within the legal and moral responsibilities of the President.

    3. All of the hijackers who committed the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks were foreigners. All of them entered the country legally on a temporary visa, mostly tourist visas with entry permits for six months. What would you say if we suffered another 9/11 while President Trump “waited” to implement a change in our immigration policy?

    4. This ban must include people with valid visas and potentially people with green cards. The muslim Christmas Day “underwear” bomber 23-year-old Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab entered the US on a valid visa from Nigeria. He studied at the San’a Institute for the Arabic Language in Sana’a in Yemens one of the countries on President Trumps list of seven nations. This islamic-inspired terrorist on a valid tourist visa nearly brought down an plane full of 290 innocents.

    5. Zaccaries Moussaoui came to this nation on a student visa.

    6. Mahmud Adouhalima came to this nation on a tourist visa

    7. Omar Abdel Rahman “the blind sheik” came to this nation with a visa.

    8. Also remember Tashfeen Malik, the Pakistani who assisted her husband Syed Farook in the Saint Bernardino Christmas day attack? That muslim immigrant came into this nation on a legal fiance or K-1 visa and was later given a U.S. permanent resident status (green card). Her husband traveled back and forth several times to Saudi Arabia.

    Will this action inconvenience many people? Yes, of course. But letting a few extremists in with thousands or poorly vetted immigrants has been shown to be more than a little inconvenient for the families of victims affected by the terroristic actions.

    I find it disheartening that a company I do business with finds it necessary to publicize their personal beliefs in this way. While I respect your right to those beliefs, I don't feel it is appropriate to jeopardize any of the company's business by taking sides in this issue.

    As a final thought, I believe your original posting is in violation of your own guidelines, in particular, "Members of our community come in all manner of ages, shapes, sizes, cultures, genders, sexual orientations, religious & political beliefs, etc. Try to create a welcoming and decent environment for hackers, makers, nerds, geeks, engineers, and ordinary people regardless of their background."

    I find your statement an attack on my political beliefs and certainly do not feel welcomed.

  • Member #619709 / about 7 years ago / 9

    Glenn and Nate are great engineers, but they are political and sociological twits. Remember how they were taken in by "Clock Boy"? Their ideology blinds them. Enjoy their work; ignore their political stupidity.

    • ygr / about 7 years ago / 1

      Why hide under a pseudonym like member#619709? Speak your mind while presenting yourself. It would be more honest.

  • I'm opposed to your opposition. You clearly don't understand it's not a ban on any one people or religion, it's a temporary stay on travel from countries that export terrorism until we can get better vetting controls in place. Obama and other presidents did the same. I'll take my business to a company that sticks to selling good products, and doesn't get involved in fake political issues.

    • MrAureliusR / about 7 years ago / 1

      Wow. Except one little fact you missed -- the countries on the list have never had citizens commit terror attacks on American soil. All the big ones were left off the list. Now what do you have to say?

  • Member #896966 / about 7 years ago / 9

    As much as I agree with the sparkfun-team, it makes me sad that we have come to a point where a political statement posted in a tech-blog (that may be reserverd for tech-related-posts) seems to split up another great community. The current situation is so overheated that we focus so much more on differences than similarities, it tears apart former communities and families all over the place. Just a few months ago we used to tinker together and focused on the joy of spending time together and doing what we like. Here in germany we went down that road before BIG TIME. And it didn't turn out so well. That being said I'd like to add that we don't live under the sharia-law, neither being flooded with muslims here in Europe. And what are muslims and christians anyways? Right: Humans. Let's focus on building a future together, talk to each other rather than trying to protect us from threats that we create by focussing on protection. We as tinkerers and inventors have the minds and abilities to do that. Greetings from accross the pond.

    • Macman1223 / about 7 years ago / 6

      preach it. It was really sad reading this thread and finding how polarizing this issue was, especially within this community.

  • John / about 7 years ago / 9

    I appreciate that everyone has personal views on things. That's great. I do find it baffling that you would choose to use your company to make this particular political declaration. It does not seem to have any direct bearing on your business. Are you really so sure that all your customers tend so overwhelmingly leftist that none will be alienated by this statement? It will just be high-fives and "amen comrade"s all around?

    I think you are wrong about that. At least, it doesn't apply to me. My own views on this, and many other subjects, are highly complex and I shan't burden you by explaining them. Perhaps I even agree with you. My views are my own. No one here would be interested in hearing them. But I do wonder why you think all your customers are interested in hearing yours. Just jumping on the bandwagon of denunciation, I suppose. All the other "tech" companies did it, so you have to, too. Very trendy.

    You know, no one ever asked the American people if they wanted one million new immigrants imported in per year, every year, year after year. And that's legally, in addition to an officially-winked-at additional stream of millions more extra-legally.

    They would have said no.

    No one asked the American people if they thought the vast majority of these new imports should be peasants from third-world countries.

    They would have, actually, answered no! Amazing but true.

    I'm not saying I completely agree with them. I don't. But I am at least sympathetic. I can at least see their point of view.

    Your customers are American people, you know. Other people around the world too, I'm sure. But at least a few of them are Americans. A good percentage of them would be very happy to see a pause put on all immigration, across the board, of that I can guarantee you. Do you really want to alienate them? Are you really so sure your political views are so much more virtuous and perfect than those of the people in Middle America who have to pay the consequences for your views?

    Self-reflection. Humility. Open-ness (now there's a SparkFun buzzword!) to a diversity of views. These are far more attractive than self-righteousness, posturing, and virtue-signalling.

    At least to me.

    I have every intention of remaining a customer, of course, because you're a good company that provides a good product. All the best!

    • I appreciate the even keel of your comment but I will not overlook your attempt to make our sincerely held beliefs out to be a matter of posturing, bandwagoning or otherwise thoughtless action. I also feel confident speaking on behalf of SparkFun in saying that we don't wish to make any assumptions about our customers or their views and we recognize that our market is not particularly politicized so we always expect that some portion of the community will disagree with our stance on the issue, but we also believe it's your right to know our stance and that you may disagree with it. We also hope that the majority of those people who disagree with us will stick around and be part of the conversation (and, not to put too fine a point on it, keep buying things from us.)

      While I can't speak for the company in this regard, I can tell you that I personally have fully explored (perhaps to extents I regret) the political and social spectrum. My family is from coal-mining country in WVa, I grew up in southern VA, I wasn't born in the "Boulder-Bubble," and while defending SparkFun's view on this recent decision, I do so with the full weight of experience and reflection.

      "Bilbo Baggins! Do not take me for some conjurer of cheap tricks!"

      • John / about 7 years ago * / 10

        Me: "Are you really so sure your political views are so much more virtuous and perfect than those of the people in Middle America who have to pay the consequences for your views?"

        NPoole, apparent Sparkfun employee: "I can tell you that I personally have fully explored (perhaps to extents I regret) the political and social spectrum. My family is from coal-mining country in WVa, I grew up in southern VA, I wasn’t born in the 'Boulder-Bubble,' and while defending SparkFun’s view on this recent decision, I do so with the full weight of experience and reflection.

        'Bilbo Baggins! Do not take me for some conjurer of cheap tricks!'"

        Interpretation: You have been all around, seen it all, considered it all, read and explored everything, and have an incredibly, wonderfully well-informed opinion. The best opinion. Yes, your opinion is more holy and perfect than those of us so foolish as to disagree.

        Great! I'm sure I speak for everyone here when I say we are all happy for you and your profoundly weighty wizardly experiences and reflections.

        Me: "I do find it baffling that you would choose to use your company to make this particular political declaration."

        NPoole: "We also believe it’s your right to know our stance and that you may disagree with it."

        My right? What are you talking about? How is it my "right"? How is it any of my business whatsoever? It isn't! It's none of my business what your private personal opinions may be on any political, eschatological, theoretical, pharmaceutical, or paleontological "issues" of the day. Everybody has opinions, and that's great.


        Look, Glenn and Nate, I understand and sympathize with your desire to occasionally "stand up" for what you believe in. I guess what it comes down to is whether one agrees with the position that's being advertised. If one agrees, then it's terrific! You agree with me on something! And so I like you more! You're "courageous" and virtuous! If one disagrees, then the advertisement is seen in a more negative light. Grandstanding. Narcissistic. Obtrusive. Obnoxious. Exclusionary. Ideological.

        Remember the last time you made an Important Manifesto, in solidarity with Clock Boy? How did that turn out? You been following that story? Bit embarrassing, eh! Bet you wish you'd kept your mouths shut on that one! :D

        Anyway, be assured it's not "0.1%" of your customers who feel like me. 50% of your fellow Americans voted for Trump, who is now the President of our country. At least 67% of Americans support the recent extreme vetting measures according to survey, and probably closer to 75% or even 80-90% support even stronger, even tighter restrictions on immigration than what President Trump has done so far. Much tighter. We are good people and good customers. We just aren't leftists. We want to keep America America. Is that OK with you?

        Sadly, it seems as though it is not. It seems as if you are instead "down with" crazed partisans who violently hate and despise this 50% / 67% / 80% of Americans. It seems as if the point of airing your dirty laundry like this is to, quote, "[let us] know [y]our stance and that [we] may disagree with it," so that, implied: if you disagree with it you can get out and take your unacceptable, deplorable views with you, you horrible, deplorable Drumpf-supporting, human-rights-hating Nazi. We "diametrically and unapologetically" hate you and don't want your business.

        That is a bullying message. Is that the message you want to send? Is that what you meant to convey? Because that is what you conveyed.

        • MrAureliusR / about 7 years ago / 1

          Except America is NOT a right-wing country. Never has been, never will be. It is a balacing act between both wings. Saying that not being leftist keeps "America America" is disgusting and disrespectful.

          • John / about 7 years ago / 7

            Except America is NOT a right-wing country. Never has been, never will be. It is a balacing act between both wings.

            Your "except that" is a tell for cognitive dissonance. Since I did not say "America is a right wing country," and also no one else here did, and also no one you have ever met or read in your entire life has said that.... obviously your declaration does not actually serve as a contradictory "except that" to anyone's opinions, anywhere.

            Saying that not being leftist keeps “America America” is disgusting and disrespectful.

            Oh, my meaning was clear (and was not that). My statement was clear. And simple. Nowhere did I say "not being leftist keeps America America." (huh?)

            Rather, I hold that, for instance, letting in one billion people from other nations will fundamentally change "America" into "non-America" -- more-so the more different the origin nations are.

            The people are the country. If all the Sudanese in the world move to Maine, what do you get? Sudan with snow!

            I hope that makes more sense to you and I am sure you will be very, very respectful and ** tolerant ** of my personal views and orientation, as people like you always are. Right? Thank you!

            ((Just keep bullying... just keep bullying!))

        • cholq / about 7 years ago / 1

          I'm curious, what exactly about supporting"Clock Boy" do you think they would find so embarrassing?

          I'll admit I haven't followed his story lately, but I did a quick search it looks like he tried to sue some people for libel and lost, and then his family moved to Qatar. Neither of those things seem like they should bring shame to someone who voiced support when he was handcuffed in school for bringing a homemade clock. But I've now seen it mentioned a couple of time in the arguments here.

    • MrAureliusR / about 7 years ago / 8

      Do you really think they give a toss if they lose a few customers who are opposed to human rights? Good riddance to bad trash! They're not being self-righteous. Read their post again. They are simply stating that they have always supported immigration and refugees. The executive order CLEARLY DOES THE OPPOSITE. They are stating that they are opposed to this. If you agree with Drumpf, then you can retort. But they shouldn't, and clearly don't, care that they'll lose maybe 0.1% of their customers over this. Believe it or not, standing for what you believe in is worth more than profits, something many Americans can never seem to wrap their heads around.

      • TheRegnirps / about 7 years ago / 4

        Ah, you are killin me man! The US Constitution (which vests ALL executive power in the President) is not a suicide pact. In international matters, conflicts between Congress and the President go to the President. Further, the President has certain duties in this area. Fedral code Section 1182(f) “Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate”

        Now what?

        • We aren't arguing that the office of POTUS doesn't have the constitutional power to make such decisions. We're arguing that he made this decision very very badly. So badly, in fact, that it reflects poorly on us to our international friends, collaborators and partners.

          We're simply making it clear to our representatives and our fellow citizens that this executive order, although (mostly, but not entirely) legal, is not in our interest and we'd like for it to not be enforced.

          So that's what... I guess

        • "Now what"

          "Goddammit, you gotta be kind, babies." - Kurt Vonnegut.

          Now what is that there are a bunch of people who are stuck out of their country, a bunch of people who are trapped in countries where they can't open a cupboard for fear of an IED blowing them up, and a bunch of people who are scared and confused everywhere else.

      • I hear you, I'm down with that. Take it easy, though, please.

        • MrAureliusR / about 7 years ago / 3

          My apologies. This stuff really gets under my skin. And I don't even live in the US!

          • Believe me, I get it. You're fine :)

            • If he's fine, then you are both confused. The temporary stay does not attack immigrants or refugees. It's a temporary travel ban from countries that export terrorism (Obama labeled them such) until out vetting procedures can be evaluated. You have made a ineffective political post that at best, will lose you a chunk of your customer base.

              • MrAureliusR / about 7 years ago / 1

                Wrong, wrong, wrong. Sadly misinformed. Not ONE of the countries on the list has had a citizen commit terror attacks on American soil. The big ones (Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Pakistan, even Kyrgyzstan, were NOT on the list. So that's 9/11, Bostom Bombings, San Bernadino shootings... not on the list.) So this is clearly not about terrorism, but about political optics, which is disgusting. YOU are an immigrant to America. This land was originally Native land. America has been extremely lucky to have so many incredible people immigrate from all over the world to help build your country, and now your spitting in their faces. Well, if that isn't divisive, I don't know what is.

  • cholq / about 7 years ago / 9

    Agreed. Thanks for posting this.

  • Member #638843 / about 7 years ago / 8

    I'm not even sure how to begin this comment. Suffice to say I'm disappointed with Sparkfun. This reads just like all of the hysterical headlines in the news. Not sure if you've read the actual wording of the executive order, but no where does it limit immigration or mention anything about banning Muslims.It does temporarily suspend travel from non-US citizens from certain countries and limits refugees. However, as far as I'm aware there are still thousands of Muslims still traveling to the US daily, and we have not suspended or limited our normal immigration policies.

    As I said previously, I see enough of this hysteria in the news, I don't expect to see it where I shop too. While I have in the past been a very loyal customer (even buying Sparkfun products through Digikey when buying larger orders with other items through them), I will not support a political organization with my shopping money. I am deleting the Sparkfun website from my favorites and will no longer purchase products through them.

    • M-Short / about 7 years ago / 2

      I am sorry we seemed to have lost a loyal customer. I respect your decision and wish you luck in all your future hacking.

    • MrAureliusR / about 7 years ago / 1

      Good riddance, IMO.

  • DAS01 / about 7 years ago / 8

    Just a question to the people who have posted. Did you read the Executive Order, or are your comments purely generated from pieces from media? Have you looked into how "vetting" has been conducted up to this point on refugees?

    • I can only speak for myself, but I read the complete text of the executive order as soon as it was signed. It doesn't take long and if anyone here hasn't read it you can find it here

      I'm not first-hand familiar with the process of immigration, but my family runs a homestay program for foreign college students at a popular state university in Virginia so I've watched a lot of students (many from majority Muslim countries) navigate the visa process and a few have even began the road to naturalization (although this can take several years in most cases) My family has also been subject to communication from government agencies interested in the activity of these students. In my experience, we've never had an open door immigration policy and it's always been a struggle for immigrants to enter the country, and I'm talking about moneyed (and, frankly, somewhat spoiled) kids from oil-wealthy countries. I have to imagine it's harder if you're not as well off.

      Refugees are another matter entirely and I'm afraid I'm not particularly well educated on the subject. I do know that before they even reach the US immigration service, they've had to register with the UN, been interviewed multiple times about their background and ideology in refugee camps and are biometrically cataloged and ID'd. I understand that people have varying opinions on the UN, but it's in their best interest to keep international incidents to a minimum.

      • DAS01 / about 7 years ago / 10

        We as Americans have long paper trails (birth certificates, school records, immunization recorders, etc.). It is difficult for use to understand that these records (many times) do not exist in countries like Iraq or Iran. Many of the UN validation amounts to taking names and pictures to village elders to determine if the person is who they say they are and whether they may have had any association with ISIS. This is not a great way to valid and verify for someone who may be an ISIS fighter assuming someone's identity. There is also a lot of documents (from ISIS themselves) identifying the refugee program to get their fighters into other countries to cause problems or become sleeps (or in roles to raise money for ISIS).

        Member #394180 speaks eloquently of immigration as a backbone of America. This is true, but remember... American immigration has ALWAYS been selective. At Ellis Island immigrants were tested and turned away if they had diseases like TB. We SHOULD be testing for diseases still, but also testing for sympathies with ISIS and groups that do not want to not be apart of America, but instead embed and harm the US. They should not be admitted as citizens if they believe in Sharia Law. I don't understand how anyone can believe that Sharia Law corresponds with American values. There has always been religious questions for immigrants (especially if claiming political/religious persecution). They should not just be asked if they agree with ISIS. They should be asked if they agree in a Caliphate, if they believe that Sharia Law is just and should be practiced in America.

        • My opinions about religious states and laws are not appropriate for this forum, but know that I agree with you in as far as any religious system of law is incompatible with the United States' secular constitution. That said, everyone is welcome to practice their religion in the US insofar as it doesn't impose on the freedom of others at which point they'll be stopped by force (that's what laws do). While I do agree that any system of law that undervalues women and promotes violence has no place in an enlightened society, I also recognize that those values are far, far, from exclusive to Islam. (And, in fact, that many Muslims do not recognize the validity of such systems either)

          My problems with the executive order rest mainly on two points:

          1) There has never been an attack on US soil by immigrants or refugees from any of the countries of concern. Even if I somehow missed one, terrorist attacks on American soil are still statistically about the lowest ranking concern for Americans.

          2) As you stopped just short of saying yourself, we already practice selective immigration to the extent that it's possible given the knowledge we can possibly have of refugees without well documented histories, and we've done so without categorically and indefinitely refusing Syrian refugees (in violation of the Geneva Convention)

      • Then speak for yourself on another venue. You are alienating your customers, which is never a good business decision.

        • No, I'll keep doing it here.

          • MrAureliusR / about 7 years ago / 1

            Thank you, Nathan. You guys are amazing. Beliefs trump profits, every time. Pardon the pun. I'm glad you won't censor your speech because a bunch of bullies in the comments ask you to.

            • As a matter of clarification I'm not Nathan, CEO; I'm Nick, Creative Technologist and occasional comment moderator.

    • Member #394180 / about 7 years ago / 12

      I read every word. I also heard what Trump and his advisors said. I stand by my post

      • MrAureliusR / about 7 years ago / 1

        Wow. So you're willing to eschew fact just because the POTUS said something different? I smell giant hypocrisy here...

  • rwizard / about 7 years ago / 7

    You have destroyed the anticipation of peaceful respite coming here to visit your site and commune with fellow tech heads about things we love. And never again will I experience an innocent child like glee upon arrival of a red box on my front porch. This morning I encountered a red board while looking for some parts, and was immediately reminded of this contentious thread.

    Thanks for wrecking a great relationship. I hope the smug self-satisfaction will compensate for any reduction in sales resulting from your decision to politicize the site.

    • SoftwareReset / about 7 years ago * / 6

      I first became a Sparkfun customer in 2012. Since then I've spent over $642 with them and only rarely bought electronic hobbyist items from any other source (occasionally Digikey). I considered Sparkfun to be an integral part of my hobby. That changed about 8 months ago when Sparkfun felt compelled to use their site as a platform for the LGBTQ political agenda. I came to their site one day hoping to find some new interesting gadget to ponder, but instead I was presented with the pro-leftist agenda and a picture of some idiot in full drag (with horns no less) in a gay pride parade. That blog was similar to this one - leftist/liberal/socialist vs. conservative viewpoints.

      Since then I have not spent a single penny with Sparkfun and intend to never do so again. Occasionally I return here to see what is new, but with no intent of buying anything from them. I do not contribute money to leftist/socialist causes of any type -- including Sparkfun who went from an electronic hobbyist website to one propagating the leftist/socialist agenda and talking points.

      Sparkfun will never regret losing my business. They will never even know what they're losing. How can they count something that they never received? Their decision to politicize their site IS losing them money. I know this for a fact because if nothing else they are losing MY money.

      They are losing more than money. They are losing whatever goodwill they had with a significant percentage of their customer base (roughly half of voting Americans went for Trump). I for one am highly disappointed in their bewildering decision to turn what was an enjoyable website into yet another political platform for contentious debate.

      If you agree that the politicization of this site is disrespectful to its customers, then you should consider shopping elsewhere. There are plenty of other places to buy your electronic hobbyist stuff without having to deal with Sparkfun's leftist/socialist political agenda.

  • Firefox9001 / about 7 years ago / 7

    I understand that the Trump Muslim restriction has angered some people, and I respect your first amendment rights to free speech, but guys, you had to know this was going to happen. Politics is an extremely abrasive subject and bringing up such a topic in a professional setting feels akin to shooting yourself in the foot. I really hope you calculated your shot, because you're going to kill off several conservative customers in exchange for liberal support*. It just doesn't give off a professional "vibe" for lack of a better word, but reeks of bias and a desperate desire for more schoolhouse arguments. I wish you luck, but the next time you want to unleash Nick on your customers, you might want to have a less controversial subject for him to argue.

    • DISCLAIMER: I in no way assume all conservatives support Trump's actions and all liberals oppose them. It was simply a generalization for the sake of my post, calm down people.

  • NorthernPike / about 7 years ago / 7

    WOW, SparkFun getting political, how disappointing. And here I thought this was one site I could come to and get away from all those crybabies who don't give a rats ass who's coming into this nation to try and kill us. And your comment about the "right" to disrespect the law is just plane asinine. Never thought I'd have to tell you of all people to "Grow up" but hey, you want to look like complete idiots I suppose it's your prerogative.

    Goodbye SparkFun.

    AdaFruit, Element14, look out because I'm coming at you with all my future orders. Damn you SparkFun.

    NorthernPike has left the building.... .><>..

  • Member #836901 / about 7 years ago / 6

    Goodbye, Sparkfun. Hello, Adafruit. I wanted to support a company in my home state but not when my money goes toward supporting this type of drivel. I got off Facebook to get away from this stuff.

  • DraperRobotics / about 7 years ago / 6

    Not trying to add to the polarization on the topic. While I can agree that it is the right of every person to have an opinion and for every business to have a policy/mission/direction/etc., I also have to agree with some that this would probably have been better listed as some headline or non-forum post somewhere. Polarizing issues like this are best left to just being a statement in a place where statements are best seen without being obtrusive (i.e. the front page to the website is the statement and nothing else). I can be fine with the rest on two points.

    1) That people recognize that this is not the only ban that has ever happened in the history of the US. While some are not on official government records, there have been many times when specific religious/national groups have been turned away from the ports, sometimes for no other reason than because they existed. Safety (i.e. disease), national security, persecution (from the US itself, look into the histories of the Quakers or the persecutions of the Mormon pioneers/pilgrims for examples) and other reasons have all been used to turn people away. The SCOTUS has been able to overturn many state laws before ONLY because they did not apply uniformly to all peoples. In this case, being opposed to immigration bans/restrictions can be very accepted ONLY if you are angry at all immigration bans/restrictions and not just this one. As long as you recognize that other bans/restrictions have happened in the past and that you're just as angry at them as this one, so be it. I can accept it.

    2) While many "bans" in the past were actually restrictions instead of outright bans, times have changed. When refugees migrated to countries before, there were not wolves in sheeps clothing trying to do extensive damage to their new countries in those movements. The refugees before were trying to escape terror and didn't have people hiding in it to cause more. Recent experiences highlight the dangers now associated with the refugee movement and how it only takes one opportune person to make it through the process to cause a lot of damage. To put it into a tech perspective, do you allow a primary server affected by the Heartbleed bug to continue serving while you work to figure out a fix? Or do you take it offline, apply the fix and then bring it back up as soon as possible, possibly missing out on several business transactions in the meantime? What's the acceptable level of risk to your and/or your customers? If you find a workstation with malware on it, do you allow it to continue functioning and work to fix it? Or do you take down all your systems and do extensive checks to ensure that no data was stolen and that it hasn't propagated itself to other systems? Do you think your customers will leave you completely if you say "Sorry we haven't been around for a week. We found malware and did an extensive search of our systems. No personal information was taken. You're safe."? Oh look, here's a furnace with high levels of CO coming out of it. We'll keep it running while we look for a repair person because we don't want to be cold. There's an extension cord with a chunk of insulation missing. We'll just leave it plugged in and tape it up because it's running Bill's experimental farm monitoring and we don't want to mess it up.

    Look at the Paris bombings/shootings. The Belgian incident. All the attacks on women in several European nations. How do you tell the victims of incidents like those that they were part of an "acceptable restriction risk" while the nation's immigration/travel processes were being examined/reformed? How do you say, "sorry you lost your life/loved ones. But it's ok because we helped 5,999 good refugees to flee their countries in those 90 days of reform and only missed that one. We're getting better."? Is that acceptable? I think I've made my point.

    While I can agree that the ban looks excessively harsh and severely targeted, I also look at an administration that looks at the terror threat resting in refugee bodies now and, just like the Heartbleed bug, wants to shutdown the system long enough to make sure it's completely caught and cleared out. I consider one life lost at the hand of a wolf in sheeps clothing to be an unacceptable risk. As long as that doesn't happen and as long as it doesn't take longer than necessary, I can support the decision (while disliking it) and hope that things turn out for the better when they're done with the repairs.

    • Member #394180 / about 7 years ago / 2

      1) Yes there were bans before. Many of them were wrong, too. Just because we were wrong in the past doesn't mean we have to be wrong today. We don't have to be angry about the past bans because they were in the past and can't be changed now. This ban is happening in front of our eyes as we type, so anger can actually accomplish something.

      2) More people are killed each year by drunk drivers than by all the terror attacks on this country, ever. We could save more lives with universal seatbelt use than by barring all refugees. Servers and workstations aren't sick people who were coming to this country for medical procedures they couldn't get at home. They aren't people who simply wanted to change planes in JFK on a flight from Costa Rica to Glasgow. They aren't legal permanent residents with US government-issued documents giving them the right to live in this country. And IT technicians aren't constitutionally bound to respect the religious freedoms and legal rights of the servers. The analogy is weak.

      • DraperRobotics / about 7 years ago / 5

        1) WWII happened over 70 years ago. Yet people are still being brought up on war crimes charges as recently as last year because PEOPLE ARE STILL ANGRY OVER IT. Things may not be changeable at this point in time. But that doesn't mean that nothing can be done about it. Again, if one is to be angry at the current ban, then anger should be directed at all bans for the same reasons. If one is an atrocity, they all were. Just because you can march on D.C. and trash the place because it happened in the past doesn't make it any less real.

        2) I can't even begin to address this without writing a novel. But let me tell a story. There once was a small bank in a foreign land. That small bank went about its business day in and day out. Sometimes it worked with much bigger banks to transact business. One day, a bunch of mean people managed to get inside the workings of the small bank and used it to harm the much bigger banks. It hurt a lot of people financially. Now, if you were a different big bank, would you continue doing business with this little bank? Or would you lock down all avenues of connection with this bank until many checks and safeguards were implemented to PROTECT YOUR PEOPLE? I mean, if people using the little bank can't send money to their family members using the big bank, it's an atrocity and should be stopped immediately, right? What if they're sick? We should let everyone in the big bank be vulnerable so that the money for the sick person can be transferred, right? I mean, it's everybody's right to do business with the big bank. It NEEDS to stay open and transacting. It's not fair to lock it down. Hey, that's my money in there and I need it to return home! I need it to do whatever! Open up and let me transact business like I'm supposed to be able to do every day I want to! Never mind that when I opened an account, it was with the understanding that I was putting my money in there to keep it SAFE. Nevermind that there are entities around that hold banks severely accountable if they ever show signs of weakness in regards to their safety. My needs come first!

        Or maybe it's wiser of the bank to lock down for a brief period of time, check all their safeguards and policies, ensure that they are conducting business with other solid, reputable banks and making sure that the not-so-reputable banks have a lot of restrictions in place to keep things like that from happening again.

        What makes more sense? And what is really the most important thing in play here? It's a question that isn't as easily answered as some people make it out to be. And if they think it is, they're missing some pretty key pieces.

  • Member #640140 / about 7 years ago / 5


    SparkFun already charges you insane markups on their products. Now I've tolerated this for shipping convenience, as well as some of the tutorials they post. But when they disrespect us like this, this is what I suggest:

    Buy direct from Chinese on ebay. You can buy in bulk and cut out the middleman. I bought 10 atmega328p's for < $20 shipped. At that price I can use them in disposable projects. Any component you're looking for, almost always you can find it cheaper by buying direct on ebay. You can also find a lot of components that sparkfun doesn't even carry. Need some nixie-tubes? eBay has tons of selection - for cheaper than sparkfun can ever hope to offer (amazon also has some available).

    Buy on Amazon. Amazon is always convenient and they always have excellent selection of products to choose from. Most common components are available, and at competitive prices. Need 100 LED's? You can have them in any color or an assortment with 2 day shipping for ~$5 - $10 on Amazon. Need 50 NE555's? $4 and free shipping. SparkFun charges you $1 / chip + shipping. Stop letting them rip you off! Looking for an SBC or arduino for your next project? Amazon has those too, and a much better selection of SBC's. Looking for a Paralella? An orange-pi or banana-pi? Amazon's got em'. Looking to get into FPGA's? Consider an Altera Cyclone II. You can get the board, a programmer, and a how-to book, all for ~$50 shipped on Amazon.

    If you're looking for components in bulk, consider a supplier such as mouser. They offer bulk discounts and their pricing is far superior to SparkFun. They have selections so you can find the specific version of the part you need, in the form factor you need. Datasheets are always conveniently available.

    Are you looking for motors, servos, controllers, rc-parts, or LiPo batteries? My go to source for these parts is They have better selection and the parts they offer are higher quality than what SparkFun offers. Need some seriously high torque metal-gear servos? Need them in a slim form factor? HobbyKing has them. Getting into quadcopters / drones? HobbyKing has a nice selection, as well as parts selection. And their LiPo selection is one of the best I've seen. Also consider your local hobby supplier - they may be able to get you a better deal.


    • SoftwareReset / about 7 years ago * / 4

      To add to your post... don't forget Adafruit! They have a much better assortment of development boards than Sparkfun. I usually buy their boards via Amazon since I am a Prime member and get the 2 day shipping. You won't be disappointed with Adafruit -- they make quality products. The vast majority of components Sparkfun sells can also be found at Digikey for less money. Digikey's customer service is the very best, their shipping is very reasonable and lightning fast. Best of all -- they don't annoy half their customer base with liberal political talking points.

      I'm not a political activist, but when a retail electronics firm decides it wants to become another Huffington Post, I say it's time to let your feet (and wallet) do a little walking -- boycott Sparkfun!

    • M-Short / about 7 years ago / 2

      You are more than welcome to boycott SparkFun, but I do have a few comments for you.

      1. You can always find things cheaper, and usually from China. We don't pretend otherwise. But you often loose out on support from the manufacture as well as supporting those who've designed the products. Sometimes what you want is cheap, sometimes what you want is support.
      2. We try to avoid insane markups. Not only is the cost of business in China cheaper (cheaper labor, cheaper shipping on parts already coming from China etc.), but we tend to be smaller and not able to negotiate the lower prices. For the most part the markup goes to shipping products in from China, rent on the building, paying US wages for production and testing, etc.
      3. We've always encouraged customers to buy bulk components from more appropriate places. Most of our resistor and capacitor pages actually list the Digikey part number. If it doesn't feel free to email out techsupport department and they can probably get that number for you. We sell these parts for convenience if you only need a few, but we have no intention of competing with Digikey or Mouser on these types of things. There are definitely times it makes more sense to buy parts from a more specialized or appropriate place and we encourage you to do so.

      As for the boycott, personally I understand your feelings. This post has unfortunately brought out a lot of disrespect and division within our community. I do not have the ability to issue a SparkFun backed apology, so I will offer you what I can and say I deeply regret the disrespect and division this post has caused in our community. I will respect your decision and wish you the best of luck regardless of your beliefs or where you shop.

      • SoftwareReset / about 7 years ago * / 4

        Why don't you suggest to the head dude at Sparkfun that perhaps you guys should stick to selling electronic stuff and leave the leftist political rabble rousing to the professionals (i.e. the main stream media). That way when your customers want to get a load of leftist/socialist talking points they can go to CNN and the Huffington Post, and when they want to shop for electronics they can come to The vast majority of your customers do not belong to Boulder's elitist social circles.

  • Teslafreak / about 7 years ago / 5

    I don't agree with your views on this, nor do I think your interpretation of it is entirely correct. That said, everyone is entitled to their opinion, and Sparkfun is a solid company with great people, that does a lot of good for the community. I also stand by your company having the (if you'll pardon the expression) "balls to" let your opinion be known. I voted for Trump, and I do support the current measures as I understand them, but I get that it's a tough deal.

  • Member #897300 / about 7 years ago / 5

    Kudos to you! One of my law school professors of business law once told me something I'll never forget and which I've lived by ever since: he stated that every dollar you spend is a vote, and you can vote for companies with whose policies and values you admire and agree, or you can ignore this principle and end up supporting questionable or even reprehensible companies.

    Your article shows a real courage of conviction rarely seen in the corporate world. I've long admired Sparkfun, but never ordered. I created my account after reading your posting, and look forward to doing business with you for a long time to come.

    • John / about 7 years ago / 8

      To be seen as a philanthropist used to require effort. An expending of resources. Actually giving something up, your own hard-earned money, sweat, and tears.

      Now all it takes is to hold the right opinion. Just have the correct opinion ("Let's have open borders!") and you qualify as a generous and magnanimous soul. And then other people -- the people who lose their jobs, who lose their neighborhoods, who occasionally get shot in the face at office Christmas parties, and whose children are murdered -- they pay the costs for your enlightened virtuousness.

      Things are so much easier nowadays. So much easier to be a humanitarian. Thank goodness for progress. :)

      Oh, and courage. Courage! To have "real courage of conviction" used to involve things like facing certain death as one stormed a beach or charged into a wall of bayonets to fight evil. Today, all that's required is making a self-righteous, back-patting blog post. Again: how far we've come! The Democratization of Courage! We can all be courageous now! Yey!

      • Courage?

        Courage is overcoming the fear and irrationality. It's looking past the emotion at the data. It's seeing the good people in bad situations.

        Holding the right opinion isn't easy, I can tell. You're scared at the things that are happening. Terrorists are scary. The world's a scary place right now. You want to prevent these things from happening, and you're doing it the way you know how; closing the borders.

        Sometimes the obvious choice isn't the right one.

        • John / about 7 years ago / 7

          Thank you for your condescension.

          I am the world's leading authority on my emotional state, and so let me reassure you that actually I am not "scared." I am certainly not scared of terrorists. I am not experiencing any fear whatsoever.

          I also am not closing the borders. I am not doing anything. I simply hold an opinion. That's all! An opinion for which you want me to feel very uncomfortable, unwelcome, and guilty. Because everyone who doesn't agree with you is a COWARD! Eh?

          Thank you, oh Courageous One. :)

  • Member #897158 / about 7 years ago / 5

    Here are the facts....(1) It is not a Muslim ban (unless you think that everyone living in these countries are Muslim). (2) It is a TEMPORARY travel ban until we implement very strict vetting standards. (3) The travel ban consists of the seven countries that Obama had designated as terrorist hotspots back in 2015. (4) The TEMPORARY travel ban is legal and constitutional. (5) Obama banned ALL Iraqi Nationals back in 2011. (6) Jimmy Carter banned ALL Iranian Nationals during the Iran hostage crisis.

    • Your effort is appreciated. Here's some context:

      (1) The phrase "Muslim Ban" is being contorted and misinterpreted by both sides of the aisle. It originally referred to the section of the order beginning: ...but only so long as they determine that the admission of such individuals as refugees is in the national interest — including when the person... pursuant to the minority status of the prospective immigrant's religion. At first glance, and in a vacuum, this statement is perfectly reasonable, but in context it stands to less scrutiny: (A) The countries of concern are majority Muslim countries (B) It logically follows that the above section grants preferential treatment to non-Muslim immigrants therefrom. (C) Muslims can be victims of Islamic religious disputes as much as anyone can. (D) America was founded in part by Christians fleeing majority-Christian countries who were using The Church to impose inhumane laws.

      (2) We understand that it's temporary. So were the Japanese Internment Camps of WWII.

      (3) The countries of concern as specified under the Obama administration were called out (in two parts over some time) to be subjected to limited travel restrictions. Using this list as a ban list is like using my grocery list to stock a grocery store. They're both lists of food that someone needs, but they were tabulated for very different purposes (and, I'll add, under a different geopolitical climate)

      (4) The ban as it was originally understood was indeed legal, but senior White House officials corrected that interpretation making it necessary for a Federal Judge to stay a portion of the ban because it was, actually, illegal.

      (5) Obama did no such thing. In the words of Joe Finer:

      “While the flow of Iraqi refugees slowed significantly during the Obama administration’s review, refugees continued to be admitted to the United States during that time, and there was not a single month in which no Iraqis arrived here,”

      What, in fact, happened was that a Kentucky man from Iraq was found to have constructed roadside bombs in Iraq and the arrest caused a justified uproar in congress. To settle the matter, the Obama administration pledged to re-examine 58,000 records of settled Iraqis in the US and imposed more strict background checks. The enhanced screening procedures (some might call them... extreme vetting procedures?) caused a logjam at the state department for which Obama, perhaps ironically, took a lot of guff from Republicans in Washington because it left brave Iraqi translators and war assets stranded for longer than anyone hoped.

      (6) (A) Yeah, they had control of our Embassy in Tehran. (B) America's done a lot of things. Doesn't mean we have to do them again.

    • (1) Who cares, it's a ban whether for religious reasons or otherwise. The ramifications don't change.

      (2) Temporary as in 90 days, with explicit declaration of strengthening it after such time.

      (4) Incorrect, see Member #394180's comment above.

      (5) A great overstatement of the ban in 2011:

      "Contrary to Trump’s Sunday statement and the repeated claims of his defenders, the Obama administration did not “ban visas for refugees from Iraq for six months.” For one thing, refugees don’t travel on visas. More importantly, while the flow of Iraqi refugees slowed significantly during the Obama administration’s review, refugees continued to be admitted to the United States during that time, and there was not a single month in which no Iraqis arrived here. In other words, while there were delays in processing, there was no outright ban."

      (6) Haven't done research on this yet.

  • Thanks Nate and SP.

  • Member #702338 / about 7 years ago / 5

    How about making your statement on your splash page? Disappointed that we didn't get any technical talk today, just a lot of chest beating from both sides.

    Technology bridges wide cultural divides and provides a unifying source especially in our community. Focus on that. We are what we want the world to become. Live it.

    Also, GET OUT AND VOTE! We are here as a country because most people couldn't be bothered to vote. Can't undo it now. We get a chance for a do-over in a little under 4 years. Mid-terms in 2.

    • Member #394180 / about 7 years ago / 2

      There actually was a tech talk on bench top power supplies for a few minutes. As I was submitting my comment on power supplies, I got a 404 and this showed up instead.

  • Beto Arango / about 7 years ago / 4

    As an international customer ....I can travel all of America (yes the continent, it is not a country...) Europe and most of the "non-dictator-controlled" world without a Visa. Yet getting a US visa is hard as hell, and very expensive. Im not sure where the US posters get that there is a free inmigration policy to enter their country. That and the fact that the president with the most votes lost (again...) I guess vex the international comunity.

    Some years ago a US man became what I believe has been our only serial killer. Horrible ordeal. Does this mean all US visitors should be turned back at the borders?

    I think terrorism sucks, but so does being afraid, and punishing inoccent families because of this.

    • TheRegnirps / about 7 years ago / 4

      Just a note Beto. There is no popular vote for President. Nobody campaigns to win a popular vote.

    • Member #436136 / about 7 years ago / 3

      Yes, getting into the U.S. is harder than a lot of other countries, particularly many of the European ones. One of the reason is that the U.S. is a popular place to live, particularly since it does not have coffee shops being bombed every other day and terrorists driving large trucks through Christmas markets. Yeah, we get too many—one is too many.

      • MrAureliusR / about 7 years ago / 1

        Oh, so you're going to return to your country of origin, then, 436136? Your family were immigrants too. Easy to forget that, isn't it? You seem to think it's "your" country, but it's not.

  • xsk8rat / about 7 years ago / 4

    Thank you for the support SparkFun! The executive order of the past week struck at the very heart of what i believe it is to be "United States of America". I also believe that if you take a moment to look past the facile "motivation by fear" to examine our history and our principles, you will see the manifest benefits of being the country of opportunity.

    My great-grandparents (and later great-great-grandparents) escaped post-WWI Europe to come to this country. His country was the epicenter of the event that initiated that horrible conflict. The arguments and criteria to stop the travelers this past week could have similarly been applied to him and his new wife. Speaking to him, he was grateful to be given a chance and the freedom to start over here in the United States. He made his new life with hard work; first mining coal, then silver, and finally iron ore.

    Forty years later, as a child, my wife and her family escaped from another strife-torn country to come to this land of freedom. Again, the conflict in that region (and religious differences) could have stopped them at the airport if similar criteria was applied at that time. (Ironically, their flight was from a predominantly Muslim country that was not affected by this weeks ban - because of fortuitous business ties the person signing the order.) Hers was another family grateful for the freedom and opportunity.

    Fear is an irrational response that is disproportionate to the risk posed. It is used by politicians, teachers, religious institutions, and even parents to provoke action. If someone is trying to sway you with fear, it's critical that you try to understand their motivation for using this particular tool. Perhaps the goal is simply to keep you from responding rationally. If there was a rational argument, look to that for your guide.

  • CMoyni24 / about 7 years ago / 4

    I would normally never mention political stuff and even more on a website like this but I have to say I agree fully and I think its completely horrible that our country has done this for the United States itself is built off of people around the world and the same with the English language. And talking about SparkFun not being here but all the things they sell. Us as people would not have been able to easily come together and make and find and discover the amazing things we have today making the world unimaginable. Not allowing someone to live in the U.S. because they came from a certain place or certain religion is against the whole reason the country was created.

    • TheRegnirps / about 7 years ago / 3

      You are being silly. The colonists came here to ESCAPE oppressive religions! Where does the term "protestant" come from?

      Not interested in bringing up religion, just historical fact.

      • Member #394180 / about 7 years ago / 6

        Some colonists came here for religious freedom. Others came for gold, land, penal servitude and economic indenture. Others were enslaved.

        The Protestant Reformation was a reaction against the corrupt papal practices of the time. It did not involve migration to America. The Puritans in New England came to get away from their fellow Protestants in England, as did the Catholics in Maryland. William Penn actually set up Pennsylvania as a place of religious freedom and tolerance. Your attempt to make religious intolerance the basis for the founding of this nation is based on a misunderstanding of historical facts.

        • TheRegnirps / about 7 years ago / 2

          Where did I say religious tolerance was the basis?

          • Reg, I've seen you a lot on the SparkFun forums. You've been a pretty decent guy.

            Give me the decency and respect to just think about your position for a few minutes. Think about all its ramifications, edge cases, based just on the reality of the current situation.

            Thanks. I'm leaving now.

      • I just keep scrolling and you just keep being there!

        In answer to your argument... I agree (although your origin for the word "protestant" is a bit of a non-sequitur, although the reformation had some bearing on certain groups coming to the US (abstractly speaking), there were many other factors to consider.

        What's more, as you were starting to get to, many of them were Christians escaping oppressive Christian traditions. Baptists, Congregationalists , Lutherans, Quakers, trying to get out from under the CofE. Much like a certain other group of refugees attempting to get out from under the Caliphate.

        • TheRegnirps / about 7 years ago / 2

          I'm like a bad penny :-) CofE was not significant after the War of the Roses then English civil war, but was a State religion for sure. Post 1600 is when colonization picks up. Many came to England before leaving for the new world. They fled what they called the church of Rome. In England, the Roundheads were taking power and they were overwhelmingly Presbyterian and Calvinist and protestant, etc., so England became a gathering place and stepping off point, like Holland. They were mostly either fleeing persecution or looking for a place to build a society based on their beliefs. Many good lessons were learned by surviving these efforts. This is what they had in common whether they were Welsh, French Huguenots, Lutherans, or whatever and they built the society from what among these ideologies was acceptable to everyone, or at least tolerable.

          I mention "protestant" above to show that in Europe they lived under protest. If the people fleeing the Caliphate were reformationists throwing off the oppressive ideology of radical nomads, there might be a valid parallel. How many Yizidis did Obama accept?

          • I’m like a bad penny

            Hahaha, you always do seem to turn up. You've been doing it here for so long, though, I don't know what we'd do without you, lol.

            • TheRegnirps / about 7 years ago / 1

              If there was one thing I would want people to take away from the fairly civil discussions above, it would be to serious consider two questions. "What is the purpose of government." and "What is the purpose of immigration?"

  • Member #706108 / about 7 years ago / 3

    The United States has always had criteria for entry, always. A mountain out of a molehill is being made to score some virtue signalling points. You've decided to jump on that train and be willfully divisive to a community that has a rare little to do with politics. One day people are going to decide easy point obtained this way are ultimately meaningless and may have even done harm. Then is will be all for naught.

  • Good on you, Sparkfun! Thank you for speaking out about this horrendous situation. As a child of immigrants, this absurd, discriminating ban and the overall theme of the present administration's approach toward immigrants is sickening. Silence and complacency are not an option during such troubling times.

    Cheers, A. Volk

  • Member #897158 / about 7 years ago / 3

    I'll leave this right here...

  • mwwalk / about 7 years ago / 3

    Thank you for making this statement and standing up for what America stands for. It makes me feel great about all the money I've spent with you in the past and you will be getting even more of my money going forward. I'll just leave this here:

    "Patriotism means to stand by the country. It does not mean to stand by the president or any other public official, save exactly to the degree in which he himself stands by the country. It is patriotic to support him insofar as he efficiently serves the country. It is unpatriotic not to oppose him to the exact extent that by inefficiency or otherwise he fails in his duty to stand by the country. In either event, it is unpatriotic not to tell the truth, whether about the president or anyone else.” -Teddy Rosevelt

  • FSJ Guy / about 7 years ago / 2

    Late to the party (again), but wanted to say THANK YOU for your support of the principles that the United States was founded on.

    Once again, I am re-assured that Sparkfun in in good hands with Glenn at the helm.

  • This is great! And it is great to do business with you! - Team, Zeppelin Design Labs

  • Great! And thank you all - ZDL Team

  • This is a very necessary content here. The question is really controversial even now in 2019. Getting to the states is harder, even to me as a European. I have a lot of friends living in Beatty, a small and sweet town near Las Vegas, and it takes the right time to get a visa even by invitation. However, I searched and searched and finally could face as an indispensable help in housing. The US authorities are very picky about the cache and housing, and 50% of the success remained with the tourists in their hands. You need to very carefully organize your vacation in the states to get a visa and rent only legal hotels. This is a state precaution, but I agree with the petition against such a tightened policy to immigrants.

  • ygr / about 7 years ago / 1

    This post reminds me why I love sparkfun!

  • teekaytk / about 7 years ago / 1

    I just want to say that I have been a buyer of Sparkfun products since a very long time may be 10 years or more. However, I have not bought much since the last few years. After this post I am going to buy a bunch of stuff just to support you guys! Wish you good luck with you business!

  • Member #5886 / about 7 years ago / 1

    What a shame! Reading all these comments it is so apparent that the country is so deeply divided and that division extends to this fine community. The terrorists have indeed won! Now we will have to face more alienation of groups within our country, leading to more radicalization and homegrown terrorism, leading to more authoritarian measures, leading to more division. I think SparkFun's message was that we need to stay united and I applaud them for having the guts to post it.

  • Member #586407 / about 7 years ago / 1

    Thanks SparkFun and Glenn. I see your statement as supportive of what the country means - a chance for people to make their own way.

  • marcus erronius / about 7 years ago / 1

    Thank you for this courageous post.

    • John / about 7 years ago * / 10

      So courageous it is to voice an opinion that is unanimous among the tech elite and, actually, required? Yes, required. Witness the extreme bullying and hate directed towards those members of the tech industry with views varying even slightly from the enforced unanimity of the gestapo -- whoops, I mean "community": Travis Kalanick, creator of Uber, and Elon Musk, maker extraordinaire who has contributed to and built PayPal, Tesla, Solar City, and SpaceX. These great, creative men are being crucified by the leftist bully squad for insufficiently toeing the line.

      If SparkFun had failed to put up an official statement toeing your line, would there be outrage at them? Would you be throwing rocking in their windows and lighting fires outside their office? Maybe. Quite possibly. Such violence is happening all over, even at places that used to pride themselves on free speech.

      The left are bullies. Right now, they are. Through and through. Bullies. So, is it courageous to toe their line so that you don't become their next target? Prudent, maybe. But is it courageous? Or something else?

      • Member #902105 / about 7 years ago / 3

        This thread is divisive - John you've done well to speak to that. This was supposed to be a safe place :)

        The many things placed in my cart since my last SparkFun order got removed to the bit bucket, and having ordered a couple dozen times in prior years - I have here on my desk an order from Adafruit - placed last week when this post appeared - only my second from them, they just got pushed up the list. Of course these days I get free two day deliveries from Amazon [finding packages on the porch on Sunday is ridiculous!] (at least that guilt ridden guy bought a newspaper to editorialize in) - and amazingly fast (or slow) deliveries from eBay or Tindie more often. SparkFun just went to the place of last resort if someday I can't do without - even if I have to learn Eagle and build my own PCB's.

      • marcus erronius / about 7 years ago * / 1

        Must be opposite day. The right wing controls our entire federal government, is stripping environmental protections, civil rights, and denouncing journalists who point out when they are lying but the people who get upset about that are the bullies.

        The right wing literally has all the political power right now, but are still claiming to be downtrodden and oppressed. SMH.

        • John / about 7 years ago * / 6

          I am talking about real people. Regular people. Like you and me.

          I have nothing to do with anything going on in Washington D.C. Neither do you (I presume). Just regular folks.

          But some of us regular folks have lately felt the deep-seated compulsion to shame, pressure, and coerce everyone into believing like them. ( See ). I don't. I could argue for your point of view just as well as for another. Or another (there aren't just two POVs). Hopefully you do not feel this ugly compulsion either. Hopefully you are perfectly happy to have me around, whatever I may believe.

          You are, right?


          BTW, NPoole as good as told you that I'm correct, earlier in the comments. Came as close as he could without actually saying it. SparkFun had to issue this statement. Had to. Look at what the thugs are doing to Travis and Uber. The bullies are strong, and they know what they want. Conformity.

          So there's my Public Service to you, SparkFun. That's as good a spin as you're gonna get. That may calm down some of the anger and stop (or slow) the customer bleeding. Maybe. Basically: don't hate SparkFun, it's not their fault. Hate the toxic, bullying environment they have to deal with in order to avoid crazed boycotts and survive.

Related Posts

Recent Posts


All Tags