In October 2018, Ford Motor Company bragged about supporting a male engineer in his transition to a transgender identity. A contractor at a Michigan plant had the audacity to respond with a comment disagreeing with transgender identity. That very day, he was let go. Ford claims the company didn’t fire him, but the former contractor insisted otherwise in comments to PJ Media.
“Ford said that because of my comment and the intolerance that it represented (or so they accused me of) that my services to them would cease immediately,” the former contractor, who wished to remain anonymous, told PJ Media. “I was told this in an unscheduled 1 on 1 meeting with my boss and an HR representative. I was told to pack up my belongings immediately, to leave my badge and computer, then I was walked out of the building like a criminal.”
“I am quite sure this post was the reason!” he insisted.
The former contractor provided an image of the Ford transgender post and another image of his response. The company’s photo showed a transgender man waving a rainbow flag, walking near a car emblazoned with rainbows and the Ford logo, with the caption, “An Evolution to Happiness: Ford’s Progressive Corporate Culture Helps Engineer Take Transformative Step.”
In response, the contractor commented, “Human beings are male or female, the socio-cultural reality of gender cannot be separated from one’s sex as male or female.” He told PJ Media this response “was posted as a ‘comment’ on the Ford article along with comments from several other employees.”
“Nearly all of the comments were singing the praises of the transgender cause whereas I was hoping to inject a statement of truth in order to bring about a genuine, constructive discussion for the good of the transgender employee the article featured,” he insisted. “Ford saw my comment as intolerant and at odds with its progressive ideologies.”
Even if the contractor’s position on gender and sexuality is correct, it may not have been wise for him to post his comment on the internal message board given the company’s clear position. The comment may have been interpreted as a form of insubordination.
While the former contractor held to his original statement, he also admitted that “in hindsight it is easy to say it was unwise, but I had no way of knowing this would be the outcome beforehand.”
The former contractor insisted he was not made aware of any official policy Ford may have on transgender issues. “If Ford does have a policy on such issues, I am not aware, nor was I made aware during my time there,” he said. “I was not given a warning of any sort, either.”
Ford spokeswoman Karen Hampton insisted the former contractor never worked for Ford.
“To your inquiry, the individual to which you are referring was not an employee of Ford Motor Company and it would be inappropriate for us to comment,” Hampton told PJ Media. “As a general practice, however, employees are not fired solely as a result of comments made.”
In follow-up requests, Hampton reiterated that “it would be inappropriate for us to comment” because the former contractor “was not an employee.”
“I do want to reiterate my earlier comment that, as a general practice here, employees are not fired solely as a result of comments made,” Hampton said.
The former contractor admitted that his paychecks came from The Productivity Team (TPT). Even so, he worked at the Automatic Transmission Operations building in Livonia, Mich. He insisted that he had access to Ford’s intranet and shared his CDSID (Ford’s employee identification number) with PJ Media.
“Yes, I had agency status, but otherwise I was integrated into Ford’s systems like any other employee.”
Furthermore, he insisted that his firing was carried out by Ford, not TPT. “My boss was a direct Ford employee. To clarify, TPT did not let me go, Ford did,” he said.
A spokesperson for The Productivity Team refused to comment on the case. “We are unable to respond to the questions you have posed. We do not provide information in response to inquiries about or involving any of our current or former employees. This is both out of respect for our employees’ privacy and as a general business practice.”
Neither Ford nor TPT responded to PJ Media’s questions regarding whether or not employees who disagree with transgender ideology would be welcome to work at their companies.
The former contractor suggested there may be “a significant element of religious persecution in play in all this too.” He insisted his comment was “a paraphrased version of a statement … from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops [USCCB]. I strongly feel that I’ve been persecuted for my moral values on this issue.”
While his statement did indeed paraphrase the USCCB statement, his comment made no mention of religious beliefs. It would be very hard to prove any religious animus against him.
All the same, big companies like Ford need to hear alternate views on these polarizing issues. There are many people who grow to regret their transgender identity, and there are good reasons to insist that biological sex cannot be overridden by mental desire, hormones, or even surgery.
The contractor insisted that he posted his comment in part to help those struggling with gender dysphoria and transgender identity. He quoted St. Augustine, “The greatest kindness one can render to any man is leading him to truth.”
Follow the author of this article on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.