Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is an investigative journalist and writer focusing on the radical Left and Islamic terrorism.
As the Director of the Office of Personnel Management, Kay Coles James oversaw a federal civilian workforce of 1.8 million responsible for $650 billion. James chairs the Women's Suffrage Centennial Commission and OPM recently celebrated her tenure as part of Women’s History Month.
She had also been Virginia’s Secretary of Health and Human Resources, she sits on three corporate boards, and is a member of the NASA Advisory Council.
She’s also an African-American conservative woman.
It’s hard to know which of these three elements of her identity attracted the most fury from leftists after Google appointed her to its external advisory council on AI. But the combination triggered a new level of rage. Gizmodo described one of the most successful African-American women in public life as a “ghoul”.
The insult came from Bryan Menegus, a white millennial hipster and aspiring internet comedian, toward an African-American woman who triumphed over segregation and challenges he couldn’t even imagine.
There’s no better contrast between conservatives and the social justice crybullies going after them.
Last year, Kay Coles James became the first African-American woman to head the Heritage Foundation. This year, Google picked James as one of eight figures to serve on its AI Advisory Council. James was likely meant to balance out William J. Burns, the head of the Carnegie Endowment Peace, an Obama crony. But almost as soon as the choices were announced, Google’s overactive lefties came after her.
The controversy, as was often the case, raged in internal Google forums where its social justice crybullies seek out new ways to purge conservatives and push the monopolistic dot com leftward. And then it was passed along to lefty digital media outlets which transformed it into a pressure campaign.
One public petition by Googlers Against Transphobia and Hate claims that James, a 69-year-old grandmother, threatens “trans people, other LGBTQ people, and immigrants”. The petition insists that Google should "place representatives from vulnerable communities at the center of decision-making".
The petition to fight for diversity by driving the highest profile African-American woman out of Google has allegedly been signed by over 1,000 Googlers. Most of the named signatories are white academics.
It’s hard to imagine how your average privileged Googler exploring alternative lifestyles while dyeing their hair orange is more a member of a vulnerable community than Kay Coles James, who grew up in a housing project as the fifth of six children with a struggling mother and an abusive alcoholic father.
In 1961, she became one of the first African-American students to integrate a public school in Virginia where she faced bullying and physical violence. Despite all that, she graduated from college, and began a lifelong journey that took her to Virginia state government and even to the White House.
Kay Coles James is everything lefties claim to want. But it’s also what they hate when confronted with it.
The Google employees are still busy running a slimy whispering campaign aided and abetted by slimy digital media sites like Gizmodo. The non-Googlers who have signed their name to a campaign against the most prominent African-American woman currently associated with Google, include Cory Doctorow, a leftist internet cretin who boasts of having gone to four universities without ever graduating because they didn’t interest him, and Naomi Klein, the privileged daughter of successful Marxist parents, currently the Gloria Steinem Chair in Media, Culture, and Feminist Studies at Rutgers University.
The Gloria Steinem Chair was partly funded by Harvey Weinstein to support “female equality”.
Googlers don’t find the Steinem Chair, once backed by a serial rapist, offensive. But an African-American grandmother sends them scurrying with shrieks of outrage that they are the true oppressed minority.
If you believe them, James does not represent a “vulnerable community”, but a bunch of academics and activists specializing in social justice, who have never experienced the challenges that she did, are.
A woman born under segregation doesn’t know oppression. But activists who think Burning Man is roughing it, who couldn’t go two days without a $12 mocha latte, are the true wretched of the earth.
And James, who has never been anything but soft-spoken and kind, is terrorizing them.
Do the leftists calling for her head because they suddenly care about ‘trans’ people really believe, as the mostly anonymous petition claims, that James poses a threat to Google’s “trans employees”?
Is this hate campaign really a desperate effort to save Google employees (average salary $112,643) from a terrifying 69-year-old grandmother who still speaks with a slow, measured southern accent?
Or is it about power?
"They gleefully throw around words like 'racist' and 'bigot' without pausing to truly, honestly consider the plight of the minority community they purport to defend," James wrote a few years ago.
Leftists don’t defend minorities. They exploit, abuse and weaponize them in their bids for power.
“Google elevates and endorses her views, implying that hers is a valid perspective worthy of inclusion in its decision making. This is unacceptable,” the petition rants.
What that really means is that conservative views cannot be allowed at Google. Beginning with the firing of James Damore to the targeting of Kay Coles James, this is a battle over control of the internet. Google commands a monopoly over search. And that means that it controls what people see on the internet.
AI is at the nexus of how lefties intend to curate, gatekeep and shape opinion on the internet. Machine learning is already being used by Google and other dot coms in projects to shadowban and censor. Having a conservative leader at the table would make it more challenging to implement such programs.
Kay Coles James, like James Damore, is the canary in the Silicon Valley data mining operation.
If Google can’t tolerate a soft-spoken and mild-mannered African-American conservative, does anyone imagine that it will tolerate any conservatives, except for the controlled opposition at Bulwark and the Washington Post? When one company wields as much power as Google does, corporate culture questions are also existential questions for everyone whose opinions don’t fit in the echo chamber.
The same lefties who claim that they want diversity in Silicon Valley have rallied to drive an African-American woman out of Google. What they want isn’t diversity. It’s ideological conformity.
And they don’t just want it at Google. They want it in America and around the world.
There’s a term for the progressive vision of the internet. It’s a term that lefties often like to throw around. But it’s a term that they carefully avoid accurately applying to their own tactics and goals.
Once upon a time, their control of the media allowed them to segregate conservative views. They controlled the press. They ran the television networks. Only radio gave them a few problems.
Then the internet came along and desegregated the infrastructure of political ideas. Ever since then they have been trying to segregate it back again by leveraging the monopolistic power of the dot coms.
Digital segregation now. Digital segregation tomorrow. Digital segregation forever.
The purge of conservatives from dot com companies mirrors the purge of conservative from their platforms. The goal of the progressive segregationists is to kill intellectual diversity by consolidating control over the system, and to use that system to censor and suppress opposing viewpoints.
The battle is over whether the internet will be free and open. Or whether it will be a platform controlled by media leftists for the distributions of their latest manifestos, smears, screeds and hit pieces.
Of the varying digital media hit pieces aimed at James, none mentioned that she is African-American.
That inconvenient fact was buried because it didn’t align with the overall message that James is a dangerous bigot who cannot be allowed to sit at the table when discussing Google’s AI plans.
The media spends a lot of time burying inconvenient facts while propping up ideological narratives.
Google has played a major role in propping up and promoting those narratives, including those defaming James, as it continues to fund and privilege leftist media while censoring conservatives.
Its inclusion of James was a fig leaf for a dot com facing fire from conservative elected officials. But the leftist segregationists driving the dot com won’t even allow a fig leaf. The very presence, real or virtual, of an African-American conservative woman infuriates leftist segregationists. Their rants, in Gizmodo, Verge, and BoingBoing, hurl at her the same spite and rage as their Democrat segregationist forebears.
In 1961, Kay Cole James faced down Democrat bullies to integrate a school in Richmond. In 2019, she’s facing down Democrats to integrate Google and its sneering social justice activists in Mountain View.
* * *