Google Blacklisted and Fired Employee for Conservative Views
Google and other tech giants have long been accused of political bias both on their online platforms and in their corporate offices. However, few have been able to prove such accusations…until now.
Thursday, it was reported that yet another Google employee had been fired for voicing his political and personal viewpoints that steered more to the right than the company would like.
In 2015, Kevin Cernekee was an engineer for the tech giant and a new one at that, known as a “Noogler.” Shortly after he began working there, he was on an internal messaging board speaking with several other employees about a series of issues. When one of his co-workers suggested that Google should hire workers “without regard to race or gender,” Cernekee agreed, as any typical, anti-racist American would.
However, this did not go over well with many of his co-workers or his superiors. Many started criticizing the other employee for his viewpoints, even calling him names and making threats. Cernekee said of the issue, “A bunch of people jumped on him and started cussing him out and calling him names.” He told the Wall Street Journal that the employee’s manager then joined “the thread and denounced him in public. I was very disturbed by that.”
And he should be. This is a company that has continually gone after President Donald Trump for being racist and a bigot, yet it seems that they are no different.
Just a short time later that year, Cernekee was involved in another messaging board incident. During this one, he was speaking to a self-described feminist co-worker. He suggested to her that “the company add a clear statement of banned opinions to the employee handbook so conservative employees would know where the lines were drawn.” He also suggested that she be a little more open to criticism.
Shortly afterward, he was sent a warning letter from the company’s human resources department saying that his comments were insubordinate and disrespectful. And only days later, a senior Google manager put Cernekee on “’ written blacklist’ of employees he wouldn’t work with.” This manager also made the fact that he had blacklisted Cernekee for his viewpoints public knowledge on an internal messaging board.
According to Cernekee, he spent the next three years trying to keep his job over countless more violations of a similar nature, most of which he simply agreed with a conservative colleague or came to their aid when he felt they were unfairly treated. He began documenting reports, interviews, copies of message board posts, and more that displayed Google’s left-wing agenda and the discrimination of anyone who didn’t share those beliefs.
In one case from 2017 where conservative viewpoints were being discussed on their internal platform, one manager publicly asked, “Can’t we just fire the poisonous assholes already?”
According to him, he made several attempts to bring such cases of harassment and discrimination against other employees before the HR department but to no avail.
Mr. Cernekee was finally fired in June of 2018.
Google accused him of using a personal device to download tens of thousands of confidential internal documents. However, Cernekee claims wrongful termination and has sued the company. In addition, he as filed at least one claim against the company with the National Labor Relations Board.
When Google was asked about the situation, a spokesperson said, “We enforce our workplace policies without regard to political viewpoint.” They went on to say, “Lively debate is a hallmark of Google’s workplace culture; harassment, discrimination, and the unauthorized access and theft of confidential company information is not.”
Google has said that the documents that Cernekee allegedly stole have been returned, but only after an order from a judge was obtained.
However, Cernekee is not the only conservative to have been fired under similar circumstances by the tech giant in recent years or even months.
In May, Fox Business interviewed Google employee and conservative engineer Mike Wacker. Wacker said that the culture there had become increasingly hostile towards the right and that it was “hard to avoid the hostility to conservative views of the company.”
Only days later, Wacker was fired.
And in 2017, James Damore released a memo that criticized the company’s lack of diversity. And he was fired as well. He as also a known conservative.
As for Cernekee, who has paid over $100,000 in legal fees against the company, says, “I very much regret joining Google.”