Clarence Page sums up the right wing reaction to Herman Cain’s situation, which, roughly summarized, amounts to “You are not allowed to criticize him because he’s black and Republican” (emphasis added):
“In the eyes of the liberal media,” Bozell wrote on the conservative NewsBusters website, “Herman Cain is just another uppity black American who has had the audacity to leave the liberal plantation.”
As an African-American, I find it heartwarming that so many conservatives have become eagle-eyed watchdogs against any hint of racism, even if it only shows itself when liberals are the suspected instigators.
mixed in with elements of this, from a stunning takedown of David Brooks at Balloon Juice:
I used to do what we called “EEO training” for a previous employer. It could more properly been called, “How to stay out of trouble with the law for supervisors” training.
I was constantly surprised by the number of times we heard, “I didn’t know you shouldn’t do that. I had no idea it could come across like that. Now I understand.”
A lot of the training boiled down to simple politeness, to not saying and doing things you shouldn’t say and do in public.
The law properly gets involved because of the power imbalance at work.
If you go to a bar and someone makes a pass at you or says something disgusting or bigoted or bullying, you can leave without penalty and find another bar. (If that someone tries to prevent you from leaving, it becomes assault and is actionable.)
You can’t leave work without penalty.
You are a duck in a shooting gallery for a harasser; he or she can keep shooting, regardless of how many times he or she misses.
This was not “sensitivity training” in any way.
“Sensitivity training” is, by and large, crap, because it tries to go where it shouldn’t: inside of people to their “attitudes” (whatever they are–my description about your “attitude” is based on my judgment of your behavior).
We didn’t care about attitudes.
We cared about behavior while on duty or on the property. That is the extent of the company’s jurisdiction, barring felonious conduct.
If you get people by the behaviors, their hearts and minds will follow.