Companies Go Through the Motions of 'Useless' DEI Training
All big American companies now require DEI training: diversity, equity and inclusion. All big companies! Really. It sounds responsible. But it turns out DEI courses are often useless and sometimes racist. First comes groveling.
My new video about DEI shows a conference that begins with a "land acknowledgement." A Microsoft employee apologizes for taking land from "the Sammamish, the Duwamish, Snoqualmie, Suquamish, Muckleshoot" and more. I guess it's a nice gesture. But they aren't giving the land back!
Companies go through the motions. "They feel like they have to," says York College professor Erec Smith. "They have to signal to the world that they're doing something."
They hope it will protect them from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and lawsuits.
Smith was once a diversity officer. He left the position because he thought it was "useless."
Or worse. "It makes people less likely to interact with people unlike them," he says. "It's a minefield now."
At diversity trainings, employees learn about "microaggressions," speech that's subtly biased.
"If you ask somebody what they do for a living, somehow that's racist," says Smith. "If you learn that, then why would you take a chance? ... 'I'm going to silence myself' ... not talk to Black people."
A Coca-Cola diversity training tells employees, "Be less white." "Being white" includes being "oppressive, arrogant, defensive, ignorant."
"That is by no means a white thing," says Smith. "The point is to demonize the other side."
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