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Posted: 11/4/2009 11:24:22 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 12:57:55 PM EST by patchouli]
Someone very close to me works in a profession that is saturated with liberals. Furthermore, the city this person works in is saturated with liberals. The industry is small. Everyone knows everyone.

For a year, there has been water cooler type talk about how Republicans and conservatives are idiots and how great the democrats are. Lately, the management has participated and led these discussions. They now happen at staff meetings, started by management.

Today, they were ranting as usual, frothing at the mouth about their own supremacy, and ridiculing those that disagreed (the ignorant public). For what it's worth, these people pride themselves on being "diverse and tolerant."

Anyway, I guess it got pretty heated (there are no dissenting views or arguments during these sessions, it's just a general cheer/propaganda session). The head manager who was leading it must have realized the mistake he was making. He asked if any among them were Republicans. He asked them to out themselves but no one answered, so the jeering went on.

This particular employee feels harassed, uncomfortable, etc. The employee is a registered Independent (shouldn't matter whatever the affiliation is). The employee feels that there is a hostility towards people with differing opinions, and feels uncomfortable. The employee wants to confront the management.

My advice was to lay low, and be strategic. Don't let emotion pin you into the corner. They will claim they are listening and feel for you, but they will look for a way to fire you and get rid of your dissent. Any minor screw up will be used to fire you, to get rid of the problem. They will ostracize you at work, and in your industry. You will be black listed. And even though you will have done the "right" thing morally, you won't be able to find work in this "niche" industry of like-minded individuals.
In short, think Chess, not Checkers.



What should this person do?







Update:

leaked email:

Subject: Staff Mtg.

I suspect that there are some staff members who are indeed inclined to the Republican point of view. Nothing wrong with that. Obviously, I’m a Democrat. I apologize if I offended anyone on the R side of the aisle. I’ll be more sensitive in the future.


Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:25:50 AM EST
He should take his stapler and leave.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:27:39 AM EST
Tape record or video of the experiences happening...then get a lawyer.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:27:50 AM EST
lawyer up, become the owner of the company after harrasment suit victory.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:28:36 AM EST
Originally Posted By Schadenfreuda:
Tape record or video of the experiences happening...then get a lawyer.


Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:30:06 AM EST

Originally Posted By Fearlessleader01:
He should take his stapler and leave.


Funny and all, but this is serious.

The person isn't an arfcommer that gets all riled up about politics or anything. If this person says it's bad, it's got to be HORRIBLE by our standards.

The person is completely non-confrontational, but feels that it has gotten to the point that it can no longer be tolerated as it is difficult to work in that environment.


If the tables were turned (let's just say one of the people were calling Obama an idiot or something), these liberals would be screaming for heads.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:30:49 AM EST
Repeat after me: “Hostile work environment.”

Document, document, document.

That is all.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:31:46 AM EST

Originally Posted By nissanfan84:
lawyer up, become the owner of the company after harrasment suit victory.

What are you going to sue for? How were you monetarily damaged?

You're going to become the owner of a non-profit company filled with people that hate you, in an industry that would soon hate you?


Does that make sense strategically? (honest question)
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:32:15 AM EST

Originally Posted By patchouli:

Originally Posted By Fearlessleader01:
He should take his stapler and leave.


Funny and all, but this is serious.

The person isn't an arfcommer that gets all riled up about politics or anything. If this person says it's bad, it's got to be HORRIBLE by our standards.

The person is completely non-confrontational, but feels that it has gotten to the point that it can no longer be tolerated as it is difficult to work in that environment.


If the tables were turned (let's just say one of the people were calling Obama an idiot or something), these liberals would be screaming for heads.

I'm with the lawyer up people.

Just figured I'd post something humorous to lighten up the thread.

Document then sue the shit out of the company.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:33:29 AM EST
keep mouth shut and find a new job. he could confront HR but that likely will end in his dismissal later on down the road for a unrelated situation.l
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:33:49 AM EST
Originally Posted By bluefalcon:
Repeat after me: “Hostile work environment.”

Document, document, document.

That is all.


The correct answer.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:34:05 AM EST
Take down names and addresses, and a basic schedule of all their movments for a normal workday.

It'll be useful for the purges.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:34:13 AM EST

Originally Posted By Fearlessleader01:


Just figured I'd post something humorous to lighten up the thread.

Document then sue the shit out of the company.

Usually, that's my schtick in these threads, but now I'm the guy needing serious advice! Karma's a bitch!


Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:37:15 AM EST
Sounds like a hostile work environment.

I'd lawyer up and try to sue the bastards.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:39:57 AM EST
document everything. use documentation in the future for whatever may arise.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:51:07 AM EST
Life is too short.

Just find another job and move on.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:53:07 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 11:54:27 AM EST by JonnyVain]
Originally Posted By Schadenfreuda:
Tape record or video of the experiences happening...then get a lawyer.


....a conservative lawer.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:59:34 AM EST
Get a different job.
Transfer to another office.
Tell the management that he is uncomfortable with the political nature of office talk.
Stay quiet and realize that it is just a job and just talk.

He does not have a case. Political affiliation is not a protected class, nor does heated political disagreement constitute a hostile work environment.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:00:06 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 12:01:32 PM EST by blacksunshinez51]
Originally Posted By Schadenfreuda:
Tape record or video of the experiences happening...then get a lawyer.


This

ETA: Hostile work environment, with fear of retribution.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:01:57 PM EST
Originally Posted By Lonespur:
Originally Posted By bluefalcon:
Repeat after me: “Hostile work environment.”

Document, document, document.

That is all.


The correct answer.


Yup, this is exactly what needs to be done
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:04:50 PM EST
Originally Posted By Lonespur:
Originally Posted By bluefalcon:
Repeat after me: “Hostile work environment.”

Document, document, document.

That is all.


The correct answer.


There are lawyers who specialize in it. You may need to shower in Gojo after speaking to them, but they are evidently effective.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:07:24 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 12:08:33 PM EST by orangelo]
Originally Posted By Fearlessleader01:
He should take his stapler and leave.


Or if he happens to be handy with a welder and knows how to drive a bulldozer...
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:08:39 PM EST
Originally Posted By orangelo:
Originally Posted By Fearlessleader01:
He should take his stapler and leave.


Or if he's handy with a welder and knows how to drive a bulldozer...


Have you looked for a job in the last year or so?
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:09:20 PM EST
Uh, how 'bout grow thicker skin. Remember the old saying "sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me"? For a reality check into a true hostile work environment head on over to Iraq or A-Stan for a tour.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:12:38 PM EST
i would just deal with it... everytime someone makes a mistake, explain to them how stupid they are. Or just, with dry sarcasm... agree with everything they say and refer to obama as "lord" or "the
"messiah". I did this at work and people caught on pretty quick... they get pissed of quite a bit these days... the only drawback to this is that you have to be careful not to make mistakes or they will rub it in.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:13:27 PM EST
If his "niche" industry is full of like minded people, maybe he needs to find a different career. The way you make it sound, he would be miserable even if he found employment with another company in the same field.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:17:27 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 12:22:24 PM EST by roadrash]
I would do this and let the chips fall where they may!

Had to edit my potential COC violation!
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:33:35 PM EST

It's called a hostile work environment.
Political persuasion or coercion has no place where you work or volunteer - unless it is some type of political org.
If you engage someone who is in a lateral position (peer) and discuss/argue, no problem.
However, if anyone in a position of authority, responsibility or influence subjects or forces a subordinate(s) to a "pep rally" (internal or external) for their political preference it's wrong.
Would this person get promoted or rcv raises if they were openly affiliated with the opposing, bashed, political group?
If you question the organizations fairness then it's a lawsuit waiting to happen.
How would a politically different individual be treated daily for their political beliefs?

You need to tape these incidents and keep a calendar (even retro some of the past events) & get a lawyer that specializes in labor.
Make a copy of your employee handbook and any commo (electronic or written) for the attorney.
I believe and practice the right to disagree on any issue but the lefties are the most intolerant loud mouthed group.
I also know that if the shoe were on the other foot (politically) 'they' would be crying bloody murder and take the org to the bank.
What you have described is way out of line. If there are current & past employees then this smells like a possible class action.

The golden rule works on this one.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:38:16 PM EST
I have nothing to add as your answer lies in many of the above posts.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:40:12 PM EST
Originally Posted By bluefalcon:
Repeat after me: “Hostile work environment.”

Document, document, document.

That is all.


Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:44:42 PM EST
You'll have that working at ACORN...
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:47:09 PM EST
Political philosophy isn't a protected class.

Drop a can of Liquid Ass in the room. It might not stop the bullshit, but it'll minimize it.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:49:10 PM EST

Originally Posted By nissanfan84:
lawyer up, become the owner of the company after harassment suit victory.

But but but all lawyers are evil! Hire a plumber (to avoid the lawyers) and get them to file the suit!
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:51:38 PM EST
Does your friend work in a federally funded research lab? Where I work, getting found out as a conservative would be like openly coming out as gay in the Marines. Pretty much a career ender.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:54:11 PM EST
COOL-AIDE

Maybe a nice batch of brownies <snicker, snicker>
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 12:56:12 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 12:56:54 PM EST by patchouli]
Update:

This email was just leaked. Nothing had been "reported" by the employee I was talking about, but it's probably not a secret, because the employee doesn't participate in any of the berating, or the gathering around the TV when the great one is speaking.



the email:
Subject: Staff Mtg.

I suspect that there are some staff members who are indeed inclined to the Republican point of view. Nothing wrong with that. Obviously, I’m a Democrat. I apologize if I offended anyone on the R side of the aisle. I’ll be more sensitive in the future.

[signed,
big boss]


Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:00:36 PM EST
Originally Posted By patchouli:
Update:

This email was just leaked. Nothing had been "reported" by the employee I was talking about, but it's probably not a secret, because the employee doesn't participate in any of the berating, or the gathering around the TV when the great one is speaking.



the email:
Subject: Staff Mtg.

I suspect that there are some staff members who are indeed inclined to the Republican point of view. Nothing wrong with that. Obviously, I’m a Democrat. I apologize if I offended anyone on the R side of the aisle. I’ll be more sensitive in the future.

[signed,
big boss]




Save as admission of guilt
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:01:51 PM EST

Originally Posted By blacksunshinez51:


the email:
Subject: Staff Mtg.

I suspect that there are some staff members who are indeed inclined to the Republican point of view. Nothing wrong with that. Obviously, I’m a Democrat. I apologize if I offended anyone on the R side of the aisle. I’ll be more sensitive in the future.

[signed,
big boss]




Save as admission of guilt

I love how he "suspects" there are those who are inclined to the Republican viewpoint.

Like it's some kind of evil disease he just knows is out there.


Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:02:50 PM EST
Originally Posted By bluefalcon:
Repeat after me: “Hostile work environment.”

Document, document, document.

That is all.


That's what I was going to say
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:03:11 PM EST
Originally Posted By david_g17:
Life is too short.

Just find another job and move on.


this!!!!
There's no law about discrimination against a political party in private business.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:04:30 PM EST
Originally Posted By nissanfan84:
lawyer up, become the owner of the company after harrasment suit victory.


This.

"it was a hostile work environment, and I felt discriminated against."

Bingo. Your wipin your ass with dollar bills, and givin away NFA toys for Christmas baby!!!
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:07:07 PM EST
If you REALLY want it to stop, and I mean stop...not "what can I do to fuck with them?"

Just IM the name and phone number to a few people here.

Lawyers cost money.

Online friends do not.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:07:13 PM EST
Originally Posted By bluefalcon:
Repeat after me: “Hostile work environment.”

Document, document, document.

That is all.


Winner winner chicken dinner!
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:11:55 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 1:29:19 PM EST by AR-10]
"I'll be more sensitive in the future."

I doubt it.

"After reflecting on the meeting we had recently, and the banter during that meeting, I realize that such banter may offend some of our team members. I recommend that we keep political talk to a minimum in the workplace and concentrate on efficiency and other means to become as profitable as possible. We will be a better team, and perhaps get raises!"

That's what a leader would send.
Not "I'll try to be nice. (You do what you want)."
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:18:53 PM EST
Have him call a lawyer...


So the lawyer can tell him that political party or ideology isn't a protected class and he's got no recourse. People have been fired before for having the wrong bumper sticker, being seen in public consuming a rival's product, and all sorts of other petty things and they had no recourse. A proven hostile work environment only gets you unemployment benefits if you decide to resign instead of being terminated.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:19:32 PM EST

Originally Posted By Schadenfreuda:
If you REALLY want it to stop, and I mean stop...not "what can I do to fuck with them?"

Just IM the name and phone number to a few people here.

Lawyers cost money.

Online friends do not.

It sucks, because I believe anything this person does is only going to hurt the future employment/money making potential.

Even if the employee wins this "battle" the "war" might be lost due to being "black-balled" in the industry.

For those who say, "get another job," I believe this isn't really feasible. The person went to school forever for this type of work, getting a masters for this very specialized area.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:22:46 PM EST

Originally Posted By Schadenfreuda:
Tape record or video of the experiences happening...then get a lawyer.

tell your friend to repeat after you, "Hostile Work Environment"
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:22:57 PM EST
Tough situation. I had a boss for several years who was the absolute most flaming Liberal you could imagine. And he'd constantly bring it up at his weekly morning meeting, and every other meeting he reigned over.

I kept my mouth shut and just did my job, as much as he annoyed me. He could have ended my career with one carefully crafted email.

Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:32:24 PM EST
Originally Posted By ncoday:

Originally Posted By Schadenfreuda:
Tape record or video of the experiences happening...then get a lawyer.

tell your friend to repeat after you, "Hostile Work Environment"


This
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:37:52 PM EST
Affiliation is not a protected class. May be in some state's on the state or local level. But the general threshold is that the discriminatory treatment must be so harsh that is significantly alters the work enviornment.

Your friend is not even close in my summation (investigated these kind of cases for 5 years).

My advice: accept the apology and get over it.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:43:07 PM EST
Originally Posted By callgood:
Political philosophy isn't a protected class.

Drop a can of Liquid Ass in the room. It might not stop the bullshit, but it'll minimize it.


No, but being harassed, coerced, and threatened at work by supervisors and managers is illegal.
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