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My multiple awards and sales have placed me in the top 1% of all American Express employees for eight consecutive years. I loved the company and “bled the AmEx blue”. I even considered getting a tattoo of the famous AmEx Centurion. Until the company criticized me for not placing the company’s DEI policies above American Express’s creditworthiness standards.
My journey through purgatory began with a request from a potential client for a large line of credit. I responded to this request by applying all the company’s standard credit checks. The customer refused to comply and, in doing so, very rudely harassed me and my black colleague whom I had appointed to serve her directly. However, I did not decline his request. Instead, I sent it to the channel for further review.
Inevitably for me, the potential client was a black woman who viewed my actions as emblematic of a narrative of racism against her. Thus, she complained to the company that American Express could be showing “systematic racism”.
The woman contacted the president of American Express and other officials through personal and legal means. She claimed that the rejection of her account was due to her race. American Express management would not tolerate any behavior that goes against their desire to be a “diverse” company.
EX-AMERICAN EXPRESS EMPLOYEE SPEAKS UP ON ‘WOKE’ CORPORATE AMERICA
The company responded by sending me on a 73 day long interrogation for my sales practices. I had to attend four Webex meetings with the internal and external legal counsel that American Express retained. At these meetings, I was not allowed to defend myself, I was told that I would be considered “guilty” if I had a lawyer present with me. When I tried I got yelled at. I was told not to contact anyone inside or outside – certainly not lawyers – about these meetings. The interrogations lasted more than ten weeks until the company rudely fired me over the phone. Their reason, which they never provided in writing, was due to my “inconsistencies in the code of conduct”.
After finally firing me, American Express destroyed my line of credit when I refused to sign a debt release document promising that I would keep my mouth shut about the whole thing. I refused my “payment” (severance pay linked to the signing of the receipt of claims) to keep quiet. As a result, the very next day, American Express canceled all my credit accounts. They even put me and all LLCs associated with me on a credit “match list”, effectively a blacklist for all credit card processors.
If I had simply violated company policy, standard practice is to inform me of my wrongdoing. Maybe give a longtime employee a second chance. Then, if non-compliance exists, go ahead and fire me.
What happened to me, however, is not about protecting strong company policies. Rather, it is to demand strict adherence to certain beliefs. These beliefs are set forth in American Express’ Diversity, Inclusion and Equity Statements.
These policies are full of double talk. The document talks extensively about “inclusive” leadership and promoting all employees. These statements are then directly contradicted by “Investing in underrepresented talent” and “Supporting the LGBTQ+ community” and promoting women. Nowhere is there any mention of the one community that is clearly not supported by the current regime – white fathers like me.
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This Kafkaesque language of trying to say – but not say – what the company actually does is another reason I was fired. New evidence in documents obtained by blind rights group Color Us United’s UnAmerican Express campaign shows that American Express incentivizes executives to promote, hire and fire based on race by giving a 15% bonus for composition of a team with the desired ratio of minorities and women.
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So I was sacrificed on the altar of diversity, equity and inclusion. When companies, or any political regime, become beholden to a political narrative, they begin to forget basic morals and standards of how to treat employees, especially high performers who have been loyal to the company. American Express – like many companies today – decided to promote the DEI and other woke policies – no matter the damage. The result is – as in dictatorial regimes – those who disagree are either silenced or exiled.
We can only hope that the realities of a free market and America’s belief in true inclusion, diversity and equality will force American Express and other companies to save themselves and their employees from becoming fiefdoms dictatorships.