Google frequently changes the look of their main search page to honor famous individuals or significant moments from history. They’re called “Google Doodles.” I’ve come to enjoy seeing how the page changes, and clicking the links to learn about the people or events the company chooses to celebrate. Until now.
Google’s May 19th design featured a woman named Yuri Kochiyama. When clicked, the Doodle redirected users to an informational page about Kochiyama, which read:
“It’s with great pleasure that Google celebrates Yuri Kochiyama, an Asian American activist who dedicated her life to the fight for human rights and against racism and injustice…”
Until someone posted about it on Facebook, I had no clue who this woman was. After seeing my friend’s post, I did a little research, and was shocked by the deplorable ideals Kochiyama espoused.
Allow me to establish something first.
Kochiyama had an awful childhood. Her father was arrested and detained by the FBI after the attack on Pearl Harbor. He was allegedly denied medical treatment, and shortly after he was released from his detention, he passed away. Yuri, her brother, and her mother were then placed in an internment camp for the Japanese.
Kochiyama spent three years in the camp. This was a dark time in our nation’s history, and it’s something that horrifies me. That said, the ideals espoused by Kochiyama over the course of the rest of her life should not be honored in any way.
- In the late 1970’s, Kochiyama advocated for the release of four Puerto Rican nationalists who’d been imprisoned after they opened fire on members of the House of Representatives in 1954. Five House members were injured, one of whom suffered severe injury.
- Kochiyama advocated for her friend Mumia Abu-Jamal, a man who murdered Police Officer Daniel Faulkner in 1981. Abu-Jamal approached Faulkner when the officer was conducting a traffic stop, and shot him in the back, and head.
- Kochiyama advocated for her friend Assata Shakur, who, among numerous other heinous crimes, was involved in the murder of a trooper. In a May 1973 shootout in which Shakur was involved, Trooper Werner Foerster was killed. Shakur was convicted of first degree murder (essentially as an accomplice), and sent to prison. She escaped prison in 1979, and fled to Cuba in 1984, where she’s been ever since.
- Kochiyama admired Mao Zedong, who was responsible for the deaths of tens of millions of innocent Chinese citizens. She was a follower of Maoist philosophy, and supported the Communist Party of Peru, known as “Shining Path,” a designated terrorist organization.
- In a 2003 interview, Kochiyama said “I consider Osama bin Laden as one of the people that I admire. To me, he is in the category of Malcolm X, Che Guevara, Patrice Lumumba, Fidel Castro, all leaders that I admire.”
Google honored this woman; a woman who strongly admired multiple mass-murderers, whose friends included a cop killer and a criminal escapee, and who advocated for a group of people who shot up the House of Representatives.
Are you kidding me? This is disgusting.
I have a suggestion for the powers that be at Google. How about next time, you just go for the gold, and put up a Doodle of starving Chinese people? Perhaps a Doodle of the twin towers crumbling? Maybe just the ISIS flag?
I mean, if you’re going to honor a scumbag like Kochiyama, have the guts to follow your bliss, and honor the other vile sacks of garbage from history that I’m sure you’re aching to Doodle.
Just a suggestion.