Evelina Silveira, President, Diversity at Work, Publisher of the Inclusion Quarterly and Author Diversity and Inclusion On A Budget
Is your workplace a de-colonized space? Are you a victim of colourism? Are you planning a civility workshop to tame your savage-like employees? Are you knocking your head against a brick wall wondering: How can I stop oppressing my clients? Are you counting the number of micro-inequities that you will encounter in a day? If you feel lost after reading this, you are not the only one.
The Far Left diversity movement is responsible for more harm than good when it comes to increasing understanding of one another and building bridges. Frankly, it is turning people off from seeking out the help of good and balanced diversity trainers because as the saying goes: “the louder your scream the more you get heard”. The Far Left is getting heard.
Balanced diversity trainers see, hear and feel the residual damage of these trainers. They have created two camps in the workplace: victims and perpetrators. They make differences outstanding by creating divisiveness. The language they use are degrading to both the “oppressed” and the “oppressor”. They don’t give credit to the many people who they label as “oppressed” who make it in the world despite the odds. Instead, they will have you think that if you are in this category of “oppressed” than you are doomed because the world is against you and there is no escape from your oppression. How empowering! Why bother even trying? You are either a victim or an oppressive-racist—those are your two choices. Take your pick!
This paradigm is far too simple to have any practical applications to everyday life. How would the Far Left explain the rise of people like Oprah Winfrey and Barack Obama? Are the predominantly white men who lost their manufacturing jobs in my hometown of London, Ontario still privileged when they are out of work or working in survival jobs?
While the Far Left likes to talk about inclusion, their language and community is elitist. You need to belong to the group of the chosen few who develop these words and their meanings and expect the rest of the world to adopt. If you don’t use the words in the right way or to their liking you are given a big label. Usually the label is “racist” but there are other good ones as well like “heterosexist”, ‘islamaphobe”, and the list goes on. Realistically, if you disagree with the Far Left radicals, be prepared to be given a label and silenced. Sounds a little like oppression to me!
The Far Left do not realize that they create the same tactics of intimidation they accuse the privilege of engaging. Labeling people before they get to know them is called generalizing and then comes the stereotyping. This movement has done a really good job in falsely categorizing individuals.
How strong is this radical movement? Regularly, I connect with employers and managers who find themselves intimidated and stressed by the tactics of these radicals who can be very threatening in an organization if they don’t get what they want. Misunderstandings that could easily be resolved through patience, dialogue and perhaps mediation become out of control. Sadly, these incidents turn into replicating what the Far Left say they are against. Furthermore, the employer will be less likely to hire someone from certain ethnic/racial/ or other groups because they don’t want to have “any more problems” again.
To the Far Left, I say it is time to allow dissenting voices to speak without punishment. We need to be having more diversity dialogues in this country, silencing others and shaming differing viewpoints is not the answer. We need to hear from everyone and sort out how we can work to create a peaceful country where we can all be included.