The Lucrative DEI Industry
Colleges offer degrees in this stuff and then hire graduates, who also infiltrate corporate America and elsewhere.
Diversity, equity, and inclusion (or DIE, if we use our preferred arrangement of the acronym) is all the rage these days on the Left. Each of those words is a perfectly good one that leftists have ruined in their headlong rush to achieve their vision of a Marxist utopia.
This isn’t just something that’s catching on with young social media influencers, either. It’s a real fixture in college administrations and classrooms and in corporate boardrooms. It’s a cancer, a poison that is slowly killing American Liberty.
Joe Biden once opposed forgiving student loans, at least arguing that he didn’t have the authority to do it … before doing it anyway. His change of heart happened in large part because of DEI. Yes, it’s good politics to present himself and his party as the champions of the debt-burdened college graduate, while casting Republicans as the villains for taking away “their” money. But college administrations are full of DEI personnel, and that costs money. Biden wants to give them yours.
We saw the consequences of DEI on the campus of Stanford University recently when law students shouted down a federal judge. Not only did administrators let it happen, but one of them quieted the students only by taking over as their leader. As our Douglas Andrews recounted, “Tirien Steinbach, the school’s associate dean of diversity, equity, and inclusion … stood up and gave a minutes-long lecture to Judge [Kyle] Duncan about the ‘harm’ he’d caused on the [Fifth Circuit] Court of Appeals.”
It’s obvious to us that Steinbach didn’t promote diversity and inclusion so much as she fomented division and hatred. Unfortunately, she’s but one soldier in a woke army that runs our institutions of higher learning.
Two years ago, The Heritage Foundation released a report about the “DEI bloat in the academy.” Focusing on 65 universities in the five “power” athletic conferences, it found that these schools have dozens of DEI officials whose job it is to enforce ideological conformity and intolerance. “Promoting DEI has become a primary function of higher education,” Heritage said, “with DEI staff making up an average 3.4 positions for every 100 tenured faculty.” Overall, its “search procedures found nearly 3,000 people listed as having DEI responsibilities in these 65 universities” [emphasis in the original].
The numbers are worse on some campuses than others. The Wall Street Journal’s editorial referenced the work of Heritage, saying: “The average major university now has 45 DEI personnel. The University of Michigan has 163 DEI officers. Ohio State and the University of Virginia each have 94. Georgia Tech has 41 DEI personnel but only 13 history professors.” Often, the DEI acronym is literally spelled out in the job title.
Where do all these supposed “experts” in DEI get their expertise? From the universities that hire them.
“Amid mounting demand for DEI experts in everything from education to finance, the number of colleges with undergraduate and graduate DEI programs has been growing,” reported USA Today last month. “At least a half-dozen colleges across the country either offer DEI degree programs or soon will.”
That’s right — you can get a BS in DEI, and Biden will even pay off your loan before you get hired by the university that indoctrinated you. Is this a great country or what?
Again unfortunately, it’s not just universities hiring these conformity goons. Corporate America is increasingly eaten up by such positions. USA Today says “that between 2015 and 2020, diversity and inclusion roles have increased 71 percent globally.” The death of George Floyd in 2020 provoked not only race riots all over America but an even more marked increase in DEI hirings. USA Today reports that “DEI job postings increased 123 percent between May and September 2020.”
The actual job description for these employees is to drive companies in the direction of woke initiatives like environmental, social, and governance (ESG) considerations that put leftist ideology ahead of stakeholder and consumer interests. Disney wasn’t ruined by the talent. It was wrecked by its DEI officers and like-minded decision-makers.
The same might be said of a certain now-infamous bank. “Defunct Silicon Valley Bank had no chief risk officer between April 29 and Jan. 3,” writes Deroy Murdock. “That’s when it wolfed down Treasury bonds whose value slid while the Federal Reserve jacked up interest rates.”
But, he adds, “SVB did have a chief diversity officer on duty.”
Murdock also points to the American College of Surgeons, which held a “leadership retreat [that] showcased critical race theory guru Ibrahim X. Kendi.” Feel better about that gall bladder surgery coming up? Probably about as good as hopping aboard that next airline flight with an incompetent but diverse crew.
The military is also succumbing to this enemy, and it pays. The Air Force is looking for a team of DEI managers and is willing to pay them up to $180,000 a year. No wonder recruitment in the ranks is down.
As noted at the beginning, the problem isn’t the goal of diversity, equity, or inclusion in the traditional meanings of those words. It’s that each one and especially the triumvirate has come to mean a conformity of ideology based upon division and hatred of whites and traditional American values. DEI is driven by Marxism, which thrives on fomenting the struggle between classes of people. Ironically, DEI is also driven by capitalist profit.
“There is another class of colored people who make a business of keeping the troubles, the wrongs, and the hardships of the Negro race before the public,” Booker T. Washington once said. “Having learned that they are able to make a living out of their troubles, they have grown into the settled habit of advertising their wrongs — partly because they want sympathy and partly because it pays. Some of these people do not want the Negro to lose his grievances, because they do not want to lose their jobs.”
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