Five days after Google fired him for writing a memo questioning the company’s diversity initiatives, James Damore is back.
On Friday, the software engineer penned an essay in The Wall Street Journal accusing his former employer of fostering what he calls an “ideological echo chamber,” one inhospitable to people like him who question Google’s prevailing way of thought.
A photo atop the essay features Damore clutching a laptop and looking at the camera. At first glance, Damore’s T-shirt appears to feature the classic Google logo, but upon closer examination, it actually reads “Goolag”:
Evidently Damore believes Google, with its plentiful supply of free food and highly paid tech workers, is on par with the brutal forced labor camps of Joseph Stalin.
In his document, Damore was particularly miffed that Google would go out of its way to hire more women, arguing that Silicon Valley’s wide gender gap is often the natural result of women being biologically predisposed to fail in the cutthroat world of tech.
Not surprisingly, his espousal of that belief ― described by Google CEO Sundar Pichai as advancing “harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace” ― ended with him being fired.
Yet Damore sees himself in a different light.
In his Journal essay Friday, he blamed his dismissal on people who are “zealously committed to the diversity creed” and simply unwilling to engage in “open and honest discussion.”
“Whether it’s in our homes, online or in our workplaces, a consensus is maintained by shaming people into conformity or excommunicating them if they persist in violating taboos,” he wrote. “Public shaming serves not only to display the virtue of those doing the shaming but also warns others that the same punishment awaits them if they don’t conform.”
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