Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Big Mouths

Let's pretend that all of the lawyers and judges are in a box in the corner and there is no danger of winding up in court.

Can anyone seriously believe that telling racial or ethnic jokes is a positive step in team-building?
That putting down women - or men for that matter - is a healthy practice?

Granted, there are people who are thin-skinned and there are those who like to play "gotcha." Their overreactions harm efforts to prevent discrimination because they provide fodder for those who assert that management is only trying to placate a bunch of politically correct wimps.

At the same time, however, a review of harassment cases does not turn up minor or arcane infractions; ones that would cause a reasonable person to wonder how they could possibly be offensive. The cases involve clearly offensive and usually vile comments; the sort that makes you wonder if the speaker has been in a time capsule for the past thirty or forty years.

Setting aside the question of whether the person is prejudiced, doesn't the behavior raise serious questions about the individual's judgment?

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