Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has criticized El Salvador president Nayib Bukele for forcing businesses in the country to adopt bitcoin while calling out "Bitcoin maximalists" for supporting Bukele.
In a comment made in a Reddit article titled “Unpopular opinion: El Salvador President Mr. Nayab" Vitalik Buterin opined that Bukele should not be praised by the Crypto community.
Last month, bitcoin became legal tender in El Salvador. While it's optional for the country's citizens to use the cryptocurrency, all companies are mandated to accept bitcoin as long as they have the technology to do so.
"Making it mandatory for businesses to accept a specific cryptocurrency is contrary to the ideals of freedom that are supposed to be so important to the crypto space," Buterin wrote in a Reddit post.
This strategy of pushing bitcoin to people with almost no prior attempt to educate them is "reckless" and "risks a large number of innocent people getting hacked or scammed," according to Buterin. He added, "Shame on everyone (well, alright, I’ll name the major culprits: shame on Bitcoin maximalists) who blindly praise [Bukele]."
On being asked if Buterin would say the same things about Ethereum maximalists if El Salvador selected ether (ETH) as legal tender?, he responded by saying that he had criticized Ethereum users and applications several times in the past. According to him, mandating "a specific cryptocurrency" is opposed to crypto's idea of freedom.
Another user asked if Bukele bought bitcoin at a low price and he wanted it to go up, so he brought the bitcoin law into the country. That is a "simpler and dumber hypothesis," said Buterin.