I’m sure many of you reading this blog already know about what happened to me in May. A presumed difference of political opinion cost me my livelihood, my health insurance, and everything I needed to stay alive during this whole pandemic.
It’s been almost exactly six months to the day… and I still have not found work.
I touched on this topic a lot before in private: people love a good redemption story. People love companies that give a second chance to a convicted felon. People love helping those who hit rock bottom, even if it’s by their own doing. For many conservative and libertarian organizations, if you have a gap on your resume because you served time, that’s actually looked at as a plus, something that sets you apart from the rest, something that could even help you in the trendy criminal justice reform crusades and minority community outreach (this is something I’ve seen the GOP, conservative groups, and libertarian groups do firsthand). Some organizations “ban the box” entirely, so your criminal history never matters. And some companies even get special benefits from the government for helping convicted criminals get on their feet again.
But if your Google results are marred with a hit piece, claims that you’re somehow irredeemable bad because of your political views? Well, then you’re ruined for life. It’s easier for someone to get their resume in a junk pile based on a Google search than a criminal background check, if that’s even done anymore. People always Google prospective applicants. They almost never–at least not in the white collar world–do criminal background checks. Those you have to pay for.
If you’re a convicted murderer, you have a better chance at getting a mainstream job than you do if your Google search results have been tainted forever. Dave’s Killer Bread is a household brand. But if you have the “wrong” political views, then get deplatformed on top of that, no one will ever care if you become homeless and therefore, become even more alienated and disaffected. That’s how our society really views second chances.
If you’re a criminal, you’ve served your time. You’ve paid your debt to society. If you’re a thought criminal, there is a never ending list of new punishments for you to suffer through. It’s never enough. You must suffer more, forever.