mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Why don't I ever get sexually harassed?

I've mentioned my MBA Ethics class before. Well, it just gets sillier. I was doing my homework (a rare occurrence, I know) in one of the books for the class. It discussed sexual harassment with a brief case study of "Marcia", the only woman who works for a department. Her male coworkers are frequently making comments and complements about "her apparel, her legs, her figure, and her manner of speaking" - which makes her feel uncomfortable.

The case is followed by this advice:

In cases like these, it's sometimes helpful to reverse the situation. Imagine that your department was predominately female and that the women continually said to the loan male "you're just a hunk" "we all get aroused when you bat your eyebrows" "That's a great suit you're wearing, those slacks really show off your gorgeous thighs". How ridiculous does that banter sound?

The first thought that went through this man's head was that would freakin Rock!. Which I'm guessing is not how I was supposed to react - but I'm sure I'm not the only guy who read that and reacted in that way.

Now, I'll agree that the initial case - in which "Marcia" complains about the comments but they continue - constitutes the legal definition of hostile-environment sexual harassment - and basic manners says if someone is pissed off enough at something you say to tell you that, you should probably stop. But the whole gender-switching exercise is dumb - guys and girls tend to react differently to flirting and sexually charged comments, and pretending that they both respond the same way - or should - seems pointless.


At 2:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Women are offensive in different ways then men. While men treat women as sex objects, women treat men as "provider objects".

So the turnabout would not be compliments about apparel, figure, etc, but rather compliments on your salary, what a good "catch" you'd be, etc.

I bet you might not find that as complimentary.

(The Opinionated Bastard, posting anonymously because Blogger sucks: )

At 2:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding OB's comment above, yes, I would find that offensive. but here are some things I ALSO find offensive that the law has no room for:
1) Women who strut around the office wearing entirely too little or acting entirely too available. In a social setting it's fine; at work, it's extremely distrcting and annoying, and in today's litigious environment, downright threatening (how am I supposed to respond to this without getting my a$$ sued off?)
2) Women who are entirely too willing to sleep with the boss to get the promotion that I've worked twice as hard for. This is the epitome of sexual harassment.

At 2:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not a big blogger but do like to read them - and while looking for info for MY Biz Ethics class, came across your blog by chance. And have quite enjoyed your satire.

To this I will put my female opinion.

I've had severe sexual harr. before and I've had the day to day variety...I have never sued anyone.

I used to work for a car dealership and I will tell you it ROCKED. I loved every day! They were all my friends and if they ever crossed a line all I had to do was tell them and they'd respect that. But I have been told I'm not like other girls and truly ENJOY the "Wow Laura look at your itty bitty waist (while grabbing my waist from behind) or "Could your legs look more tan?"...
I have even got some CRUDE ones - that just made me burst out laughing.

Every day was a flurry of compliments and it made me feel sassy and sexy - oh how I wish I was 24 again and working there.


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