This is all based on a pending lawsuit, so it might all be bullshit.
Well, it’s definitely bullshit either way – either because the claims made by the plaintiff are true or because they aren’t.
Anyway, this woman is suing the CEO of the largest homebuilding company in Omaha, NE for forcing a spiritualist religious agenda on its workers. The lawsuit was filed after she was fired, allegedly because her unborn child carried “negative energy.” From the Omaha World-Herald‘s description of the allegations of the lawsuit:
[Former HearthStone Homes employee Jammie D.] Harms was asked to take part in a conference call with an Arizona-based psychic to determine “whether or not negative energy was being created with the pregnant plaintiff because she had a male boss versus a female boss.”
[CEO John J.] Smith consulted with a chiropractor and “self-described energy worker” who told Smith he shared a former life with Harms’ unborn child and suggested that he “partner” with the baby. Smith declined, saying the baby’s energy was hostile toward him.
There’s this popular misconception about new age woo where it’s supposed to be all warm and fuzzy – something for hippies and spaced-out retirees to get into. Under that misconception, you might not expect it to be prevalent in the business world. They’re supposed to be practical and pragmatic and religiously devoted only to their bottom line.
But there’s another side to new age woo other than the insence and the crystal healing and the horrible music. Take reincarnation. It’s all comforting for those of us who are well off to think that we are that way because we were so awesome in previous lives and are now being rewarded. But at the same time, reincarnation beliefs demand that no sympathy at all be given to the sick or the poor. A terrible disease in a newborn isn’t a tragedy to overcome; it’s a just punishment from the gods for behavior in a “past life.” The disadvantaged brought all their hardships on themselves, in other words. Actually, we can just use the words of the proponents of these beliefs themselves:
I think those individuals who are open-minded should reflect on the belief in reincarnation as it gives an explanation as to why there are so many injustices in this world. Why are babies born deformed? Why do good people suffer tremendous losses? How come so many things seem so unfair? One person is rich, another is so poor. One person is born into a wealthy family, another into a ghetto. Why so much inequality? The theology of reincarnation explains that there is a balance to life and that everyone “reaps what they sow”.
Instead of rolling up their sleeves and working to fix problems like the huge gap between rich and poor, these people work on trying to justify those circumstances. And that kind of theology is a perfect ideological match for the business world. All of your successes are a testament to your greatness, and the failures of others proves that they just generally suck.
So maybe Smith is guilty, maybe not. We’ll have to wait to see the evidence. But it would be silly to lean in his favor just because he’s not wearing a tie-dye T-shirt in court.