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Sexual harassment and the law: a legal little shop of horrors
The Daily Caller ^ | 11-5-11 | Christopher R. Barron

Posted on 11/05/2011 2:37:59 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic

Lost in the press’s non-stop hunger for a lurid he-said-she-said regarding the allegations against GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain is a more basic look at the nature of sexual harassment claims in this country.

As a recovering trial lawyer, I know first-hand how messy our legal system can be, but even I am shocked at the sorry modern state of sexual harassment law.

Instead of focusing on the claimed constitutional protections of suspected foreign terrorists held at Guantanamo, maybe the ACLU and the rest of the faux civil libertarian left should be spending a little more time concerned about egregious infringements on the constitutional rights of American citizens here on American soil. A good starting place would be taking a look at the state of sexual harassment law in this country, which can best be described as a legal little shop of horrors.

Our sexual harassment laws often undermine free speech. The claims themselves are incredibly easy to allege, incredibly difficult to defend, have been expanded to cover almost any type of speech and underscore the need for real and serious tort reform in this country.

Earlier this week, conservative author and former lawyer Ann Coulter caused waves when she said that getting charged with sexual harassment in the 1990s was akin to being charged with witchcraft in the 1690s.

(Excerpt) Read more at dailycaller.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Government
KEYWORDS: blackmail; business; feminism; freespeech; tortreform

1 posted on 11/05/2011 2:38:03 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: afraidfortherepublic

As part of my job in 1998, I was required by my employer to attend an in-service on sexual harassment, led by an attorney. The think I remember most from this two-hour session was that raising one’s eyebrows could be considered sexual harassment!! For heaven’s sake!


2 posted on 11/05/2011 2:40:31 PM PDT by choctaw man (Good ole Andrew Jackson, or You're the Reason God Made Oklahoma...)
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To: afraidfortherepublic

Sexual harrassment: You say, “You look nice,” and the woman is so devastated that her life is ruined forever and the only thing that will pull her back together is a large financial settlement.


3 posted on 11/05/2011 2:42:47 PM PDT by Savage Beast (A backwoods southern lawyer is a safer trustee for your soul than a Washington politician.)
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To: afraidfortherepublic

What need is a loser pays rule. If you can’t prove damages, you pay the other party the amount you stand to collect if that’s the case. It would eliminate 99% of the lawsuits in this country and put ambulance-chasing legal loan sharks out of business for good.

That’s the way to put frivolous and shakedown sexual harrassment claims to bed.


4 posted on 11/05/2011 2:47:56 PM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: afraidfortherepublic

I’m hungry, FEED ME!


5 posted on 11/05/2011 2:48:11 PM PDT by Paladin2
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To: choctaw man
Maybe if you are THIS guy! Sexual harrassment through the eyebrows
6 posted on 11/05/2011 2:49:49 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: afraidfortherepublic

“Maybe if you are THIS guy! Sexual harrassment through the eyebrows”

YES, he could be arrest (ebonics).


7 posted on 11/05/2011 2:51:45 PM PDT by choctaw man (Good ole Andrew Jackson, or You're the Reason God Made Oklahoma...)
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To: afraidfortherepublic

My Brother owned a small taxi company in Boston. One day the dispatcher said to a female customer on the phone , “The cab will be at you door in ten minutes, Hon.”

The woman sued my Brother for sexual harassment because he refused to fire the dispatcher on the spot for saying “Hon”. She won six figures from my brother’s insurance company, who promptly dropped him after paying out. The Comm of Mass Commission Against Discrimination was involved, and it was all over the papers with my brother cast as the EVIL BOSS who didn’t care about his customers. And so on.

All because of an antiquated speech pattern that “offended” somebody. If she didn’t like it, she could have called a different cab company. But No. She felt it was more just to destroy somebody’s life who had never meant her any harm.


8 posted on 11/05/2011 2:53:06 PM PDT by left that other site (Psalm 122:6)
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To: Savage Beast

We used to have a heavy set, older woman working for us as a purchasing agent who proudly displayed a coffee cup on her desk that said, “Sexual harassment is a perk of this job.”


9 posted on 11/05/2011 2:54:02 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: afraidfortherepublic

I don’t talk to women at work, or even make eye contact with them, for this very reason. Sorry ladies, but in your quest for making a quick buck by being a professional victim has marginalized and isolated you from men in the workplace.


10 posted on 11/05/2011 3:18:03 PM PDT by factoryrat (We are the producers, the creators. Grow it, mine it, build it.)
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To: afraidfortherepublic

People are scared to death at the work place to get acquainted for fear of harmless conversation being misconstrued as sexual harrasment.


11 posted on 11/05/2011 3:24:56 PM PDT by doc
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To: factoryrat

“I don’t talk to women at work, or even make eye contact with them, for this very reason. Sorry ladies, but in your quest for making a quick buck by being a professional victim has marginalized and isolated you from men in the workplace.”

I use many of the same rules. I also keep, as much as possible, a 10 foot circle around me in which women are not allowed. I speak to women only spoken to and all answers are kept as short as possible.

It is not as bad as it used to be, but in the nineties it was really awful. I knew guys who had their careers destroyed for nothing more than an innocuous comment or look.


12 posted on 11/05/2011 3:25:51 PM PDT by buffaloguy
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To: factoryrat

You probably are making your HR person crazy, if she is a female. She’s already made a note in your folder about you and dubbed you passive-aggressive! LOL I know because I handle HR for our small company, and that is exactly what I did with an engineer who used to work here. He wouldn’t look you in the eye, or give a straight answer about anything. I just let my husband handle him, and he finally quit. Nobody was sorry.

I have another one just like him, and I won’t be sorry if he leaves. The one I have now is the only person who ever swore out a sexual harassment complaint in the 50 year history this company — over teasing that some of the assembly line women directed his way. The complaint? The ladies used to whistle the “Lassie Song” whenever he walked by. My husband and looked at each other increduously. The Lassie Song? How is that sexual harassment? Well, it seems that he married one of them who was not popular with the others, but who didn’t work here anymore; and The Lassie Song was supposed to suggest that he followed his wife around like a little dog.

We didn’t “get it” either, but we suspended the whistle instigator for a week, and he seemed satisfied. The 2 of them still work for us 12 years later. He is still at the beck and call of his wife, but we are a small company and can roll with it.


13 posted on 11/05/2011 3:34:08 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: afraidfortherepublic
The plant that I work at has a 60/40 ratio of women to men. The name of the game there is cold and professional. If you veer from that path for even a split second, you're looking at termination at best, or a lawsuit at worst. Yeah, it's that bad anymore. If the work environment has become so hostile to men, to the point that we can't even communicate with female co-workers without running the risk of being sued into oblivion, over some perceived slight, then you might as well pack it up and go home.
14 posted on 11/05/2011 3:55:31 PM PDT by factoryrat (We are the producers, the creators. Grow it, mine it, build it.)
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To: factoryrat

I can’t even fathom working in a place like that. Like I said, I work for my husband of over 50 years. I threaten him from time to time with sexual harassment, but he knows I’m joking. I figure I am there to keep him from making untoward remarks. I’ve probably saved his bacon a couple of times.

I don’t know what Cain said, or did; but if making a gesture describing the height of his wife is all that it was, this whole thing is stupid. Geez. They are going to get me the next time I say “You’re really tall,” to a man!!


15 posted on 11/05/2011 4:11:31 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: factoryrat

I can’t even fathom working in a place like that. Like I said, I work for my husband of over 50 years. I threaten him from time to time with sexual harassment, but he knows I’m joking. I figure I am there to keep him from making untoward remarks. I’ve probably saved his bacon a couple of times.

I don’t know what Cain said, or did; but if making a gesture describing the height of his wife is all that it was, this whole thing is stupid. Geez. They are going to get me the next time I say “You’re really tall,” to a man!!


16 posted on 11/05/2011 4:11:31 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: factoryrat

Lady boss calls one of the guys she supervises into her teeny tiny office for a business meeting, a room so small that everyone has to get up and leave one at a time, and later complains that the guy seemed to be crowding her....


17 posted on 11/05/2011 4:50:37 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (ya don't tug on Superman's cape/ya don't spit into the wind--and ya don't speak well of Mitt to Jim!)
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Remember How You Felt Before Finding FR?

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18 posted on 11/05/2011 5:01:38 PM PDT by DJ MacWoW (America! The wolves are here! What will you do?)
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To: Ladysforest

You lose.


19 posted on 11/05/2011 5:07:19 PM PDT by SonofReagan
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To: buffaloguy

It was weird in the seventies too. The TV network I worked for had a west coast facility that recorded the shows out of New York, then played them back three hours later for the west coast. The videotape machines took a while to lock up, so you had to start recording half a minute early to make sure the picture was stable by the top of the show. After 10 weeks of training, where pre-roll was constantly stressed, one of our female techs was doing her first recording by herself so the super was keeping an eye on her. Thirty seconds before the 3:30 news feed, she was standing in front of the machines, staring off into space. The conversation went like this:

Super: “You need to start recording”

Tech: “Why? It’s not 3:30 yet.”

Super: “Because you need lockup time, go into record.”

Tech: “Well I don’t see why I have to.”

Super: “Just start recording, we’ll discuss it later”

Tech: “Well, I don’t see why you’re talking to me like that. You wouldn’t talk to a man that way.”

Super: (Seeing it’s now ten seconds to air) “Jesus Christ, get out of the way”!

He dove for the controls, hit the record button, and (miracle of miracles) one of the two machines recording the ONLY copies of the network news locked up with about a second to spare. In diving for the controls, he brushed against her. Three weeks later the harrassment suit for “unwanted touching” was filed. The network just paid her to go away, considering it a bargain.

On another note, one of the ironies of the Paula Jones case was that the legal provision that allows the plaintiff to examine the entire personal history of the defendant was pushed through Congress by Bill and Hill.


20 posted on 11/05/2011 5:46:05 PM PDT by ArmstedFragg (hoaxy dopey changey)
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To: afraidfortherepublic

I can’t imagine it either. I had mostly male co-workers and most of the words and actions were harmless and I dealt with it. There were sexual innuendos flying through the air non-stop. I laughed when they were funny and rolled my eyes when they weren’t.

Only once did I feel intimidated and I told my other co-workers and they put the fear of God in this guy, he never even dared to look in my direction again much less leer at me.


21 posted on 11/05/2011 7:04:16 PM PDT by tiki
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To: SonofReagan

How so Chuckles?


22 posted on 11/05/2011 8:24:40 PM PDT by Ladysforest
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To: tiki

Sure, but you notice how it is mostly men who have a problem with the change? I wonder why?


23 posted on 11/05/2011 8:30:55 PM PDT by Ladysforest
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