Jeff Bezos Criticized After Thanking Amazon Customers, Employees Who ‘Paid’ For Space Launch
Jeff Bezos accidentally said the quiet part out loud.
That's a caption that I saw someone share on a video of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos at a press conference on Tuesday after taking a quick trip to space earlier that day.
The total trip took about 11 minutes from beginning to end—and while Bezos hasn't disclosed what costs have been associated with the Blue Orgin flight, we do know that one seat on the New Shepard was auctioned off for $28 million.
After the flight, Bezos spoke at a presser where he thanked Amazon employees and workers for "funding" his trip into space.
I want to thank every Amazon employee and every Amazon customer because you guys paid for all of this
While Bezos obviously said it in jest, his statement did not sit well with many on social media where he faced immediate backlash.
Many were quick to point out the history of Bezos pushing back against unions, suggesting that "stolen wages" helped to get him to space.
Others criticized the gross lack of taxes paid by a man who makes millions per minute.
It's no secret that the billionaire's massive e-commerce company has an unfortunate history of treating employees badly, but his comments were no laughing matter to those who are familiar with the reports of high injury rates, subpar working conditions, and recent reports that cite the lack of protection for Amazon workers who carried the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Outside of the obvious criticism, there were those who pointed out just how ridiculously rich Jeff Bezos is, which puts into context why some people feel like his money could be spent in ways that would help solve some of the world's biggest problems.
But, at the end of the day, it's Jeff Bezos' money, and if he wants to blow it on joyrides to space, that's his prerogative.
Even if he's "out of touch."