Earlier on our show, we talked about a Slate article that perfectly encapsulated the level of crazytown that corporate cultures are in right now as a result of being in a post-Weinstein world.
Yes. Slate. Slate actually published a reasonable column.
Men are terrified of working with women now, and rightly so. Listen.
We took a lot of calls on this issue, but some of the emails we received were even more compelling.
I’m keeping this first one anonymous and have removed references to the industry he works in, but check this message out.
Good morning, chicks,
I’ve been listening to your show and the latest commentary has made me consider just how my actions have changed in the past 20 years.
1) I used to compliment my female coworkers and tried to notice when things changed (hair style, glasses, etc). I no longer do so out of fear of a harassment accusation.
2) (In my line of work) I sometimes would have to go out (to do field work) with a coworker. I used to think nothing about going out with a female coworker. Now, I’m very concerned when I have to go someplace with a female coworker, and when I do I am very professional, and “cold”, to the point of driving separately and requesting that someone representing the owner be present for all activities, so that way there is a witness.
3) I try not to ride in the elevator at work alone with a female coworker. I usually take the stairs to avoid this issue.
4) I used to be a office comedian, telling jokes or funny stories (nothing off color, that’s not my style). Lately I’ve found that I come into the office, do my work, and go home when the day is over. My interactions with coworkers are strictly professional out of fear that I may inadvertently offend someone. To be honest, it’s rather soul killing.5) I’m a lot more aware about what situations I put myself into even outside of work. My massage therapist is a female and she is fantastic. Before, I never considered the risk I was taking by going into an enclosed room with a female not my wife (ala Mike Pence). Now I am aware of that risk and I am wrestling with the decision to continue this business relationship. I would like to think that my massage therapist is an honorable person and we’ve had a professional relationship for over a decade; but how well do I really know this person outside of my hour long interactions with her every three months or so? I feel like I’ve known her for years but the reality is, I’ve only really spent a little more than 40 hours with her.
One instance in particular has changed how I think about female coworkers – in a past place of employment, I was speaking with a female coworker about a project related topic. I noticed that she had a large piece of white fuzz on her shoulder. Without thinking, I reached out to pluck it off, trying to be nice, and she literally recoiled from me, like I had the plague. Thankfully nothing ever came of it, but it made me aware that even a trivial gesture could be misconstrued as something a lot more sinister. I began at that point to realize that in the event of an accusation, the woman usually gets a lot more sympathy for her side of the story than the man, and looking at what has been happening in the world today, even a whiff of an accusation could spell the end of a career, even when no evidence is provided.
Sad to say, but men should be terrified to interact with women now that we’re living in the age of presumption of guilt without ever being given the chance to be proven innocent.
Thanks again for your show – you do great work.
So while it’s great that true predators are being called out and dealt with, we now have to contend with the other extreme. Can you blame men for being terrified now? Where is their due process in the face of allegations? Women, contrary to the prevailing theme right now, are NOT always to be believed. Women, in case you were unaware of this, can be vindictive, malicious seahags. Unfortunate, but true.
One of our callers told us the story of being hit on by a female coworker. He wasn’t interested in dating her, so he rebuffed her advances. Humiliated, she reported HIM for sexual harassment as a way to get back at him. For people to pretend that sh*t like that never happens is absurd. Of course it happens.
Here’s an example of that from Jim Gray:
First I’d like to say thanks for your show today. I wanted to call in however I thought my story would take a little too long to explain on the air.
I really do not agree with the believe all women statement. Several years ago I was falsely accused of sexual harassment and had to go through an investigation to prove that I was not. Not only did this false accusation jeopardize my career but it also put my marriage at risk. I was working for the state and part of my job was to teach first aid and CPR classes at a National Guard Armory. During one class a female that also work for the state would go down the hall and apparently flirt with soldiers during breaks and lunch. Someone that worked at the Armory was offended by her behavior and reported it to the facility I worked at. The female later found out that someone had reported her and incorrectly assumed it was me and to get herself out of trouble claimed I was making a false statement about her because she would not date me. I had never spoke with her before or ever asked her out and this accusation took me completely by surprise. She claimed I treated her poorly and harassed her throughout the class she took and at one point even through materials at her after her lunch break. Fortunately for me all of the people that attended the class testified and stated everything that she said was false also I had a survey that she completed immediately after the class which stated that she enjoyed the class very much she enjoyed me as the instructor and that I was very professional and she would love to take the class again and recommend it to other people. That coupled with the fact that I was not the one that reported this prevented me from losing my job due to a false accusation.
Unfortunately the state also has rules that are meant to help protect people that make these accusations. A person that files a sexual harassment complaint cannot be reprimanded or have any negative actions taken against them after doing so. While this is great if a person is sincere and is reporting a true incident it also protects those who file fake reports. So this female was able to make a false report and have zero consequences when it was discovered that it was false.
I would tell any male working in an office around females to always act in a professional manner regardless if the female believes it is okay to joke around and tried to never put yourself in a position where you’re alone with someone.
Because of this incident I will not believe reports just because the person is claiming sexual harassment, which is unfortunate because I know many women that were harassed make reports without evidence.
Keep up the good work, I love the show
And if you think that this can’t backfire and hurt WOMEN TOO, you’re high. Check out this message from Zach.
Hello, Chicks! I could not get through on the phone lines, but wanted to tell you my personal story of how things have changed at work in the post #metoo America. My office is made up of only eight people, all men. Three weeks ago, we had our first female applicant come in for an interview. She was amazingly qualified, so we hired her. When the owner found out, we were all warned not to cause any problems as there is a “zero tolerance” policy. Just to be clear, the owner is an amazing woman that can out-dude most Millennials. Our instructions included “do not make jokes, or attempt to help her (as she was so qualified for her job she was actually concerned we would be accused of mansplaining) So, she started and none of the other coworkers really spoke to her. We all arrive at the same time and the manager unlocks the door to the office, usually holding it open for us to walk in. Her first day she was the last one in line to get in the office and the manager felt it may not be appropriate to continue to hold the door for her. Long story short, after nine work days she put in her two week notice sighting that the discomfort of being the single female employee was palpable and felt that we had gone so far out of the way to not do anything wrong that she was annoyed. Her last day at the office was last Friday, and we were all very disappointed to see her go as she was a great addition to our workforce.
Hope this finds you all well, thanks for being such an entertaining voice of reason.
So, #metoo women, be careful what you wish for, because as Zach pointed out, you might be wishing yourself right out of a job that could have been perfect for you. You might be wishing yourself into a work environment that’s cold, sterile and unfriendly, because guys are too scared to talk to you.