One aspect of anthropology that has always fascinated me is the human condition. It can spur feats of great bravery, selflessness and benevolence, and it can be petulant, duplicitous, and execrable. It can do great things (move mountains/build bridges), or it can wallow in its own putrid self-pity and stew into a gelatinous mess, repulsive and off putting. Each follows his own road; saint or sinner, good or evil, exemplary or deplorable.
The human condition can also be swayed by mass consensus, can forget its values and be short sighted. And usually it takes the path of least resistance, preferring that which is ordinary or popular to that which is profound or difficult.
A story that surfaced this week has to do with a woman who participated in what she thought was a joke, a moment of levity meant to amuse, then put the evidence of said joke on Facebook, people were not amused;
You can read more about the incident here:
Yes, she is sorry;
And expectantly, both women were fired.
This whole episode ticks me off for several reasons. When did society up and get so thin skinned that getting offended turned into an Olympic sport? Was it all the fault of those cry baby Muslims, who demanded death at every slight or offense of their precious religion? It seems like folks used to be more circumspect, or even keeled in the actions of others. Now days the absolute right not to offended trumps everything else. Whatever happened to ,”Gee, that was kinda stupid, let’s go get a pizza”?
We could discuss the First Amendment issues with the twisted pantie wearers, how saying stupid offensive things is one of the cherished protections we have in America, qualifying for ridicule and derision, sure, but not deserving of incarceration or being banished to the unemployment line.
The other thing I find really troublesome is these Codes of Conduct clauses employers hold over the heads of employees like a Sword of Damocles. Aside from the obvious rules of criminality (we don’t steel stuff from our place of employment, slash the boss’ tires, or shit on his desk when he is at a meeting), but conduct outside of the work place is really not the business of your boss. Some occupations require a code of conduct, the military and law enforcement readily come to mind, but it seems to me that most jobs were a COC is present is there unreasonably, present only to give the boss more leverage or influence then necessary for the worker to do his job.
Yes, we can all agree that what Lindsey Stone and her photographer buddy did was dumb, in poor taste, and regrettable, now who here has never done the same thing some time in their lives? Nobody here is more pro-military then I, but this whole movement of firing folks at the drop of a hat, please. Over 10,000 Facebookers voted to fire both of them, tough crowd, the mob can turn ugly on a dime.
Does anyone here think I am way off base, that this particular offense worthy of getting fired over? I looked at the website of the employer, yes, they do good work and ordinarily would be tops of my list of charities I would give money to. But I think they over reacted. There are several websites that specialize in heralding the rebel in all of us, those mischief makers that just have to zig when society tells them to zag. If such actions are criminal, such as this idiot, then you do the time and STFU, or if dangerous and you fall to your death, too bad for you and thanks for validating the Darwin theory, but bad taste is not a crime, and certainly not deserving of losing your job over. A heartfelt apology was given, is a pound of flesh necessary?