Elon Musk Slams DEI During Discussion With Ben Shapiro: ‘Could Come Out Of A George Orwell Book’
SpaceX, X (formerly known as Twitter), and Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks during live interview with Ben Shapiro at the symposium on fighting antisemitism on January 22, 2024 in Krakow, Poland. (Photo by Omar Marques/Getty Images)
Omar Marques/Getty Images

Tech entrepreneur Elon Musk, who owns the social media giant X, blasted Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) and its prevalence on college campuses on Monday.

Musk appeared with Daily Wire Editor Emeritus Ben Shapiro at the European Jewish Association (EJA) conference in Krakow, Poland, on Monday. Musk and Shapiro discussed topics such as anti-Semitism, free speech, and social media during a roughly hour-long discussion.

The conversation flowed to DEI and the impact it has had on universities in the United States. Shapiro compared DEI and its emphasis on race-based solutions to Nazi conspiracies about Jews.

“If you read Nazi literature, the Nazis literally promoted the idea that the Jews were, of course, this small caste of people who were running all major industries, who were standing behind all world power,” Shapiro said. “That theory of power and group identity is really ugly, and we see echoes of it today.”

DEI “suggests that all of society is a vast pyramid of group identity, and at the very top are the people who are successful, and that those people are exploiting everybody else. And we can tell who is successful by their group identity; not by their level of success, their group identity. It matches up incredibly, almost a Venn diagram with the circle of anti-Semitism,” Shapiro said.

Musk responded, “You should always be wary of any name that sounds like it could come out of a George Orwell book,” in reference to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

“What it really means is discrimination on the basis of race, sex, and sexual orientation. And it’s against merit, and, thus, I think is fundamentally anti-Semitic,” Musk said.

The tech titan later said that the U.S. needs to discard the DEI standard in favor of one based on merit.

“We really need to stop this principle that the nominally weaker party is always right. This is simply not true,” Musk said. “If some of those weaker groups want to annihilate you, that does not make them good.”

The focus of the EJA conference is the rise in anti-Semitism across Europe since the terror group Hamas invaded Israel on October 7, resulting in the murders of roughly 1,200 people and the capture of hundreds more. Shapiro and Musk noted that the Palestinian terror group and its backers in Gaza appear to have gained support in the West, especially on college campuses, in part because of a belief that the Palestinians in Gaza are victims of Western oppression. Gaza is one of the leading recipients of aid from the U.S. and Europe.


“I’m a big believer in moral absolutism, not moral relativism. There is good and bad in the absolute, and you judge any group or individual against absolute moral standards, not whether they’re the so-called oppressed or oppressor,” Musk said.

“You would think,” Shapiro responded, “but the pseudo-sophisticates on college campuses seem to think differently.” The Daily Wire host then pivoted to the spread of DEI on college campuses, asking Musk what the future of universities should be given that they “appear to have been corrupted by moral relativism.”

“We need to return to what things mostly were, which is a focus on merit,” Musk said. “It doesn’t matter whether you’re a man, woman, what race you are, what beliefs you have. What matters is how good are you at your job, or what are your skills.”

“You could be a three-legged green Martian, wears a kimono, drinks yak’s milk. Who cares? It doesn’t matter. What matters is, how good is your work? That’s it,” Musk added.

Got a tip worth investigating?

Your information could be the missing piece to an important story. Submit your tip today and make a difference.

Submit Tip
Download Daily Wire Plus

Don't miss anything

Download our App

Stay up-to-date on the latest
news, podcasts, and more.

Download on the app storeGet it on Google Play
The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Elon Musk Slams DEI During Discussion With Ben Shapiro: ‘Could Come Out Of A George Orwell Book’