Wicca, Transgender Jokes, Sex Discrimination: Google Sued for Civil Rights Violations


Former Google employee James Bara has filed suit against the search giant, citing sexual and religious discrimination in violation of the US Civil Rights Act. Bara alleges that situation began when his supervisor Pam Sohn learned a new employee was transgendered.  Sohn joked frequently about the new hire, Asheligh Rentz, commenting about her sexual preferences to fellow Google employees. Bara told Sohn that the comments were inappropriate, but Sohn did not stop making them until Rentz began working in the office.

After this Bara noticed after this that Sohn was becoming hostile towards him. Sohn made numerous joking references to his faith–Bara is Wiccan–and continued despite Bara’s requests that she stop. According to Bara, Sohn began to give preferential treatment to women in the office, allowing them to work from home, while Bara and other men were required to do all their work in the office.

When Bara complained to Human Resources, Bara claims that Sohn’s actions towards him became increasingly hostile. Despite excellent performance reviews and bonuses, Bara was no longer permitted to conduct off-site training, and he was required to fill out extra paperwork each time he entered the data center. The hostile working environment and comments about his faith continued, including Sohn singing

Ding dong the witch is dead! Which old witch? The wicked witch!

when Bara completed a project, to his

obvious discomfort and disgust.

Despite numerous attempts to resolve the problems, including involving the upper reaches of corporate HR, no progress was made, and Bara was fired.

Google’s response:

After a thorough investigation, we have no reason to believe James Bara was discriminated against or treated unfairly, and we’ll defend ourselves vigorously against these charges. Google values a diverse and respectful workforce and does not tolerate discrimination.

I wonder if Bara did spell work to try to improve his work situation, like a peace in the workspace spell, spells to improve communication, etc. I mean what’s the point of having a faith that emphasizes positive change through magic, if you don’t use the magic part? Granted, Wicca has this whole thng about not influencing the Will of others, but heck, at this point, I’d be doing some legal spell work to resolve the matter in my favor!

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Lisa Derrick

Lisa Derrick

Los Angeles native, attended UC Berkeley and Loyola Marymount University before punk rock and logophilia overtook her life. Worked as nightclub columnist, pop culture journalist and was a Hollywood housewife before writing for and editing Sacred History Magazine. Then she discovered the thrill of politics. She also appears frequently on the Dave Fanning Show, one of Ireland's most popular radio broadcasts.