Outrage, anger and backlash were sparked over the weekend when a Google employee circulated a document internally. Many Google employees took to twitter to announce their disgust whilst others timidly agreed but refuse to voice their opinion after seeing the vile hatred exposed by the document.
Having actually read the document myself I suspect the majority of people posting on twitter, reddit and comment sections about it haven't actually done. Firstly the author acknowledges that there are biological physical differences and measurable psychological differences in character traits between men and women. If you disagree with that then there’s not point trying to reason with you. Men and women are different, period. Although I believe we should be treated equally and given equal opportunity, the scientific fact that males and females across all species are different is something those who oppose this document want you to overlook.
I want to provide a summary without the emotionally enraged twist on what was actually written, for those who won't take the time to actually read the document and formulate their own opinions.
I believe you should always go to the source material and read it yourself rather than trusting other peoples opinions of it. Don't trust my opinion either, go read the original article
The document titled "Google's Ideological Echo Chamber" is an attempt to discuss a taboo subject which the author believes many people in corporate environments are too scared to bring up and self censor their opinions to avoid facing this sort of highly emotional backlash, which the author inadvertently received. The whole point of the article is basically "Let's reasonably discuss something that has recently become too turbulent to talk about." Given the political stance of the majority of the company and Silicon Valley those who hold opposing viewpoints are silenced, normally through fear of repercussions of them questioning the status quo or voicing an unpopular opinion. Anybody who surround by politically or religiously minded people know that often it is better to bite your tongue and not voice your opinion else you may be ostracised.
Sex Differences - Too taboo for humans
Biologists and scientists regularly study differences between males and female members of other species, both psychical and behavioural differences. However a certain group of people think these sorts of studies of human populations lead to prejudices and justify discrimination and they will stop at nothing to let their outrage be known.
While I don't agree with all points the author makes when stereotyping common traits among men and then women, I accept that these are derived from solid research findings about the sex differences in the Big Five personality traits. To summarise these differences the author states:
- Women are more empathetic than men, they connect more with people and aesthetics. Probably why they're drawn to empathic roles like teaching, nursing and prefer to work with people.
- Women have higher levels of openness and agreeableness.
- Men connect more with things, they like to systemize. Probably why they're drawn to software and STEM fields, why they take jobs isolated areas and enjoy working with machinery
- Men have lower neuroticism, less anxiety and higher stress tolerance. This combined with women being child bearers and primary care takers of their offspring is why we see more men than women in high stress, working long hours in executive positions.
According to the unknown author, men strive to achieve status, often working excessively to the point they become unhappy and unhealthy just to achieve higher status. None of this is ground-breaking and all of these claims are supported by research, which seems to be becoming more and more controversial as swarms of anonymous highly emotional internet users attempt to censor and discredit anything they disagree with.
End discrimination. With more discrimination!
Those who claim to be against discrimination of minorities and want more than equal opportunities for the oppressed do so by discriminating against those they see as the oppressor. Their ignorance keeps them blinded, they perpetuate the very thing they claim to be against by simply reversing the roles. "Stop oppressing women and minorities and start oppressing the white male, this will solve all our problems", or so they claim, oblivious to the hypocritical nature of their argument. They seek equality of outcomes rather than equal opportunities, they want everyone regardless of drive and ability to achieve the same things. They seek to destroy merit based structures in favour of providing those less fortunate with outcomes for which they're not adequately suited for.
Within the tech industry there are numerous programs to provide support and training for those considered disadvantaged. They provide scholarships and specialised channels to enter the industry exclusively women and other minorities whilst restricting access to other equally disadvantaged penis owners. I've yet to see traditionally female dominated industries offer similar scholarships and encouragements to increase numbers of male teachers or nurses. Personally I support assisting disadvantaged people get jobs in their chosen industry but I'm against doing so in exclusive and discriminatory ways where all members of a population are automatically excluded.
The very programs created to put an end to sexism and to increase diversity actually perpetuate sexism by treating women as less equal and in need of a handout while preventing access to these programs by less fortunate men. The very definition of sexism is to treat one sex different from the other and that is what is being encouraged and happening in governments and corporations across North America right now.
The article finishes by discussing diversity for diversities sake won't improve an organisations productivity and will actually damage the culture. The author wants to stop the majority from silencing dissenters and encourages a 'de-moralized' approach to look at these issues with more reason and logic and less emotion. We should have open civil discourse about all subjects, by refusing to talk about something we admit others have power over what we think, feel and say.