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Old 02-11-2019, 11:50 AM   #1
Warhammer
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Difference in generations:

So my 17 year old son got 2.5 days of OSS for telling a teacher a joke, which was considered sexual harassment. Here's the joke:

"What did Cinderella do when she got to the ball? She gagged."

OK, first off, my reaction was he got 2.5 days of OSS for being a dumb ass because there is nothing good that can come out of telling a teacher a joke. Plus, it is not appropriate. I think the OSS is completely overblown, but once it was considered sexual harassment, with zero tolerance that is what you get.

That said, had he followed up with, "Do you want to be Cinderella?" or, "Can I be your Prince Charming?" I would completely agree with it being sexual harassment.

Reactions (all female):
45ish year old teacher he told the joke to: "Whatever..."
28ish year old teacher my son had no clue was in the room (never even met): Reports my son for sexual harassment
60ish year old mother of a friend: "That's hillarious, how does it go again?"

Another twist, my son is very interested in politics. My 41 year old friend, another female, "He should have exactly what transpired written down and notarized. It was poor judgement. Look at what is going on in Virginia and what people are getting in trouble for back when they were in high school. If he gets it notarized there is no debating it."

I can't get over the difference in reactions that vary based by and large on the generation of who heard what.

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Old 02-11-2019, 11:54 AM   #2
ISiddiqui
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To me there is no doubt that's sexual harassment. And I guess another reason that I'm glad my wife teaches elementary school and not high school.
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Old 02-11-2019, 12:14 PM   #3
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That was crazy poor judgment on his part. You can get away with a joke like that to your same-age male peers. You can't tell that to a teacher under any circumstance.
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Old 02-11-2019, 12:54 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by ISiddiqui View Post
To me there is no doubt that's sexual harassment. And I guess another reason that I'm glad my wife teaches elementary school and not high school.

yeah.

I don't want to get too deep in to this, but the thing people don't get about sexually harassment is it doesn't matter how you, the harasser, feel about it. The issue is how it makes others feel. Hopefully he can learn a lesson from this.

Another example of how different women will react differently.

Friend of ours, early 40s woman, attractive, is on a plane this morning. She is in the aisle seat with no one else in the row. Just as doors close guy gets on the plane and has the window seat. Friend says to the guy "ah man, you screwed up my plans to lay down." Guy then says " you can just put your head on my lap"

At best highly inappropriate, and at worst, blatant sexual harassment. Friend was creeped out by this, and now has to sit my this guy on a cross country flight. My wife was on the opposite end that it was a poor joke, but not harassment.

You just never know how your actions will project on someone, and how their life experiences shape how they perceive those actions.
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:06 PM   #5
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To Lathum:


Holy shit. I never would have considered that harassment. That's just flirting as far as I was ever concerned. Damn. I was told once that I'm a 'close hugger' and I had no idea what that meant. Even after I was told, I was like that's a thing? How is that a thing? Aren't hugs close? I guess a lot of things that go on between the lines (especially where their married or one party is married) and get to be misinterpreted sometimes, at least in my experience, are either naivete or innocence. I guess that's why dating apps have their place. At least the tone is set before the communication takes place, and there is less chance of misinterpretation.


To Warhammer:


I think it's right to be irritated at both parties. I mean, OSS seems like a bridge too far when it comes to that, imo. From a parent perspective you hate that something like that happened, you're irritated that your kid didn't use better judgement, and it's right to be rightly pissed. I would be really angry with my kid though, if he told be that he had told a female teacher that joke. HS is an increasingly rough place for female teachers, they just aren't held to the same respect standards that they used to, so they are right to be very defensive and aggressive in dealing with any kind of bullshit.
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:09 PM   #6
CU Tiger
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Im in the camp, of poor judgement...should have known his audience better.
But not sexual harassment.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Lathum View Post
yeah.

I don't want to get too deep in to this, but the thing people don't get about sexually harassment is it doesn't matter how you, the harasser, feel about it. The issue is how it makes others feel. Hopefully he can learn a lesson from this.

Another example of how different women will react differently.

Friend of ours, early 40s woman, attractive, is on a plane this morning. She is in the aisle seat with no one else in the row. Just as doors close guy gets on the plane and has the window seat. Friend says to the guy "ah man, you screwed up my plans to lay down." Guy then says " you can just put your head on my lap"

At best highly inappropriate, and at worst, blatant sexual harassment. Friend was creeped out by this, and now has to sit my this guy on a cross country flight. My wife was on the opposite end that it was a poor joke, but not harassment.

You just never know how your actions will project on someone, and how their life experiences shape how they perceive those actions.


This one....to me is even worse.
I mean I didnt hear the exchange, maybe he said it lewdly and suggestively...or maybe he was just being polite. Would it have been as bad if he'd said, you can put your feet in my lap?


To your point about the receiver's feelings being the ones that matter. Did she stop to consider that maybe she made this guy uncomfortable by saying he had ruined her plans. I mean maybe he would have seriously had a complex all day that he started his day off by ruining someone else's plans.


Now I am very careful about what I say at all times to all but my closest of friends. To the point of usually not even offering an opinion on debatable topics. Small town and a successful business makes me hyper-aware there are always folks who would love to see me screw up and try to find a payday.



But at my core, how I feel and not how I act, Im of the opinion that saying you are offended by anything another person says is basically admitting you're incapable of controlling and managing your emotions so it is everyone else's responsibility to do it for you. And to that I say put on your thick skin and grow up.
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:12 PM   #7
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It probably would have been better received if he had offered to switch seats so she could lean against the window.
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:14 PM   #8
Warhammer
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That was crazy poor judgment on his part. You can get away with a joke like that to your same-age male peers. You can't tell that to a teacher under any circumstance.

No doubt. That was what I was most upset about. The complete total lack of judgement.
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:19 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by CU Tiger View Post


But at my core, how I feel and not how I act, Im of the opinion that saying you are offended by anything another person says is basically admitting you're incapable of controlling and managing your emotions so it is everyone else's responsibility to do it for you. And to that I say put on your thick skin and grow up.

It is this kind of minimizing of someones feelings that is the problem. You have no right to tell someone how they should feel about your words, or that they need to toughen up.

Now I do agree that there are many times people are ridiculous about it. Seems lately you aren't even allowed to tell a woman she looks nice without someone yelling harassment.


But IMO, telling a complete stranger they can put any part of their body in your lap can certainly be construed as sexual harassment, whether they meant it that way or not.
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:21 PM   #10
Lathum
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Dola-

It just really rubs me the wrong way when someone gets offended and the blame is flipped on them by not having a thick enough skin, called a snowflake, needs to grow up etc...

How about just saying, " I am sorry I offended you, that wasn't my intention"
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:22 PM   #11
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double dola-

None of that is meant as a direct attack on CU, I am speaking about people, usually men, in general.
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:32 PM   #12
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Its definitely inappropriate. The OSS seems harsh unless he has a history of this.

My thoughts are that 17 year olds are dumbshits. Just a pile of hormones and a developing brain that is transitioning from a child to an adult. They are going to say and do dumb stuff. I cringe at the stuff I would say and do at that age.

So instead of shaming the kid with an OSS, it would probably be better to give a detention, explain what the issue is, and maybe have them read some material on why that is inappropriate during the detention.
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Old 02-11-2019, 02:45 PM   #13
Warhammer
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Originally Posted by CU Tiger View Post
Im in the camp, of poor judgement...should have known his audience better.
But not sexual harassment.

No doubt. However, the one he told the joke to was not the one that reported him (not trying to take up for him because he was stupid).


Quote:
Originally Posted by CU Tiger View Post
Now I am very careful about what I say at all times to all but my closest of friends. To the point of usually not even offering an opinion on debatable topics. Small town and a successful business makes me hyper-aware there are always folks who would love to see me screw up and try to find a payday.

I work in an industry where words like tit, nipple, shaft, etc., all refer to parts for equipment. But like you, I am extremely careful what I am saying to people at all times. I only open up to extremely close friends.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CU Tiger View Post
But at my core, how I feel and not how I act, Im of the opinion that saying you are offended by anything another person says is basically admitting you're incapable of controlling and managing your emotions so it is everyone else's responsibility to do it for you. And to that I say put on your thick skin and grow up.

This is my belief as well. In the case of my son, what has me steamed is the following:

1) His total utter lack of judgement. He should know better, and was taught better.

2) The school's reaction to the matter was overboard. A meeting with the principal or guidance counselor, I get. Detention, I get. ISS, a little much, but I can understand it. OSS? Holy cow, a fight between students is not an automatic OSS. This was.

3) The fact it wasn't the teacher he made the joke to that turned him in bothers me as well. It seems a bit 1984ish to me.
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Old 02-11-2019, 02:54 PM   #14
Warhammer
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Its definitely inappropriate. The OSS seems harsh unless he has a history of this.

My thoughts are that 17 year olds are dumbshits. Just a pile of hormones and a developing brain that is transitioning from a child to an adult. They are going to say and do dumb stuff. I cringe at the stuff I would say and do at that age.

So instead of shaming the kid with an OSS, it would probably be better to give a detention, explain what the issue is, and maybe have them read some material on why that is inappropriate during the detention.

No history of it at all. There was a thing going around social media to #FreeXXXX once other kids heard why he was in OSS.

Heck, when I was around that age, we had a few sayings that related to girls. Typically it would go like this:

"She's hot!"
"Dude, she's 14!" (we were all of maybe 16)
"If there's grass on the field, play ball!"

Then some one else would go for the gross out factor and say something worse. I completely understand why it is wrong now, but at the time we didn't think about that. The fact is at some level we knew better, we wouldn't say it to a teacher or subject of the conversation, for example.

All that this has taught the kid (any time there is a chance for him to get the short end of the stick, he does), is if you have money or are part of a special interest group, you get special treatment. Which leads him to resent others.
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Old 02-11-2019, 03:07 PM   #15
Radii
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All that this has taught the kid (any time there is a chance for him to get the short end of the stick, he does), is if you have money or are part of a special interest group, you get special treatment. Which leads him to resent others.

I don't understand. Who is the special interest?

People in authority sometimes make really shitty decisions when it comes to punishment. Luckily if you're a white dude there are very rarely real consequences to this.

But surely even if the punishment didn't fit the crime (and I agree that it didn't), there is a very real lesson to learn about thinking about what you're about to say and who could be listening and what their perspective could be. Better to learn that in high school than at a job, where, no matter how any of us were raised 30-40 years ago, it 100% is sexual harassment in the workplace to do something like this.

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Old 02-11-2019, 03:31 PM   #16
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Better to learn that in high school than at a job, where, no matter how any of us were raised 30-40 years ago, it 100% is sexual harassment in the workplace to do something like this.

Well that's definitely true. A blowjob joke like that in the workplace could easily get someone fired immediately.
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Old 02-11-2019, 03:46 PM   #17
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Well that's definitely true. A blowjob joke like that in the workplace could easily get someone fired immediately.


huh?
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Old 02-11-2019, 03:56 PM   #18
ISiddiqui
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You don't think so? Or did you not realize it was a BJ joke (I guess someone could misunderstand it as a ballgag joke)?
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Old 02-11-2019, 04:12 PM   #19
CU Tiger
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reading fail on my part.
I missed the wor joke in your post and in my quote
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Old 02-11-2019, 04:22 PM   #20
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It was a decent joke for what its worth.
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:14 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by CU Tiger View Post
Would it have been as bad if he'd said, you can put your feet in my lap?

Let's be honest, he spoke, therefore he's the villain in 2019.


Quote:
Did she stop to consider that maybe she made this guy uncomfortable by saying he had ruined her plans.

He should be uncomfortable, after all, he's the source of all evil in the minds of the lunatics.
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:16 PM   #22
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You don't think so? Or did you not realize it was a BJ joke (I guess someone could misunderstand it as a ballgag joke)?

I actually DID think it was more of a ballgag joke than a blowjob joke.
(a combo perhaps, but more the former than the latter)
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:31 PM   #23
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It is this kind of minimizing of someones feelings that is the problem.

Can I simply limit that to minimizing how much of a fuck I give if some oversensitive "victim" gets upset?

That doesn't deny them the right to get upset in the slightest, it merely affords me the right to not care.
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:43 PM   #24
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Let's be honest, he spoke, therefore he's the villain in 2019.




He should be uncomfortable, after all, he's the source of all evil in the minds of the lunatics.

The old "men have it so hard these days" defense.

Because telling a complete stranger she can put her head in your lap is a totally normal and acceptable thing to say.
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:44 PM   #25
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Can I simply limit that to minimizing how much of a fuck I give if some oversensitive "victim" gets upset?

That doesn't deny them the right to get upset in the slightest, it merely affords me the right to not care.

You can not care all the way to the unemployment line.

That is the world we live in these day.
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:02 PM   #26
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You can not care all the way to the unemployment line. That is the world we live in these day.

Then it's time for sanity to regain control.
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:06 PM   #27
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The old "men have it so hard these days" defense.

Because telling a complete stranger she can put her head in your lap is a totally normal and acceptable thing to say.

No more or less so than the whining that prompted it.

The entire situation - as told here - was prompted by the alleged "victim".
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:09 PM   #28
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No more or less so than the whining that prompted it.

The entire situation - as told here - was prompted by the alleged "victim".

ok
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:27 PM   #29
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My questions would be:

1. How many comments would you need to cross an acceptability threshold? Three? Five? Ten? Infinite?

2. We're cool as guys with gay men making sexual innuendo towards us, right?
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Old 02-11-2019, 08:25 PM   #30
Radii
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The old "men have it so hard these days" defense.

“Equality can feel like oppression. But it’s not. What you’re feeling is just the discomfort of losing a little bit of your privilege.”

Its really incredible how violently some people resist the concept that really you should just try to be a decent human being.
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Old 02-11-2019, 09:26 PM   #31
Warhammer
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Special interest meaning non-white male. My oldest has been screwed several times by because he is not a minority. It was worse in Memphis than here. He wound up in the principal’s office several times because when some one was doing something wrong he would go to the teachers with it (bullying, etc.). It got to the point where teachers would email or call my wife or me at home to give the actual account of what happened at school. My wife and I have a policy that if either child gets sent down to the principal’s office there will be discipline of some sort. It got to the point where he started asking why bother going to the authorities if you could the perps could just lie and and get out of trouble. Which turned into questioning whether or not you should do the right thing.

You have kids vandalizing school property, getting into fights, or using racial epithets, and these are punished with detention or ISS. He gets OSS for his. For the record, I do not think he really realizes what the joke implies fully. From my point of view, that is another reason not to tell it in the first place.

To answer cuervo, there needs to be a pattern. One comment is an error in judgement or could be a faux pax. In Lathum’s example, I understand Jon’s point. If the friend just sits up and makes room for the guy, there is no reason for him to flub the response. If he constantly said it during the flight or made other comments, he is probably harassing her. If he was quiet the rest of the flight, the guy probably realizes how he came across and is hoping nothing else is said.

As far as gay guys making innuendo to me, not a problem. I have had it done to me. It wasn’t that big of a deal. Then again, I have a relatively thick skin about such matters. I am more worried about how what I say is interpreted rather than what is said to me. The only time I was aggravated by this was when the gay RA in college started telling all the guys their GP (gay potential) at dinner. My issue there was it was completely changing the subject from a serious discussion the guy joined us in the middle of.

Last edited by Warhammer : 02-11-2019 at 09:28 PM.
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Old 02-11-2019, 09:47 PM   #32
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Oh, to be clear my questions were geared more to the plane scenario.

Regarding your son, I think the punishment for a first offense is a bit harsh. But...bad judgement. Better to learn that lesson now though. I assume this was a teacher that he has a REAL relationship/understanding with, but man, know that there are eyes and ears everywhere. That's not a joke that you should share unless you're really, really sure about your audience and surroundings. Sharing with a teacher is...ballsy? I can't think of a teacher I would have felt comfortable going there with. Dirty jokes are peers only.

As far as work goes (CU)...yeah, not in any workplace I've been a part of. Wait, the sporting goods warehouse with the deadheads, and maybe the summer I did demo for my uncle-in-law. Anything more professional, no friggin way.
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Old 02-11-2019, 10:04 PM   #33
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So I am the only one who grew up being told not to say certain things around certain people so as not to be inappropriate to them and for my own safety?

You guys were lucky.
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Old 02-11-2019, 10:10 PM   #34
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So I am the only one who grew up being told not to say certain things around certain people so as not to be inappropriate to them and for my own safety?

You guys were lucky.

Ya, I missed these "good old days" where apparently you could say something like this to a teacher. I don't have kids and don't know what OSS is but something like that would definitely result in a suspension and my parents being involved even in the 80s.

I'm not sure exactly what would happen if I said something like that at a job, but if it was unwelcomed and reported to higher ups or HR I'm sure I'd be up shit's creek at any job I've had as an adult since 2000.

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Old 02-11-2019, 11:54 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Warhammer View Post
Special interest meaning non-white male. My oldest has been screwed several times by because he is not a minority


I know that I frequently wish I had been born a transgendered black woman instead of a straight white male. I truly hope your son can overcome his difficult circumstances.
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Old 02-12-2019, 12:25 AM   #36
Radii
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So I am the only one who grew up being told not to say certain things around certain people so as not to be inappropriate to them and for my own safety?

You guys were lucky.

Eh, At 17 anything can happen, I certainly did dumb shit of my own. And despite the snark in my last reply Warhammer has owned up to the fact that of course his kid did something dumb, and that there certainly deserve to be some consequences. And I agree completely that the punishment does feel a little harsh. But honestly, just a little.

Let me expand a little instead of just leaving my previous shitty, snarky reply (not TO miami_fan, just... well, I'm in this reply now):

Do this at age 21 to a professor or 23 to your boss, or even at the water cooler where you think only your male coworkers who are probably fine with the joke heard it, but oops, a female coworker walking by heard it and was offended. Honestly though, take gender out of it. Your male coworker didn't like it. Its harassment. You'd certainly hope your boss would have a conversation with you about appropriate behavior, but its a fire-able offense. You can be pissed if you got fired for it, but the company is 100% in the right to do so.

So yeah, punishment probably a bit harsh here. Taking responsibility for your actions and not excusing the kid, good stuff. Being frustrated for your son's situation, absolutely, understandable. But these posts are just LOADED with "yeah, but" that absolutely bother the hell out of me.

The 60 year old older generation woman wasn't offended, it was that damn 28 year old who the kid has never even met. Even the person he told the joke to just had the attitude of... "whatever" - So what? It isn't the 28 year old teacher's fault for being there. She didn't ask to be put in a situation where a teenage boy is telling a sexual joke. It's my responsibility to be fully aware of my surroundings. We're getting dangerously close to victim blaming here. And yeah, it's one joke from one kid who usually means well. But that one kid (and his dad) could stand to learn a little more empathy about the sexism and sexual situations pushed unwantingly upon women all the time. This is a good opportunity to teach that, instead of add an extra layer of frustration that some random woman happened to hear a sexual comment not intended for her and then she ran off tattle-taling on the poor kid. Nah, fuck that. The woman deserves to be able to go to her job and not have to deal with this shit. And the more we call out these situations, the more we have a chance to change and improve our culture going forward, the younger the better.

Multiple posts refer to the fact that the woman who reported it wasn't the one he told the joke to. That is how the real world works. You make jokes about your boss behind his back but one day he overhears you and you get fired? Do you protest "But I wasn't even making fun of you to your face, you weren't supposed to hear that!!" - How, exactly is this different, except for a little perceived sexism. How dare that women not be okay with being put in an uncomfortable situation when that wasn't the intent of the student? Bullshit.


Finally the comment that

Quote:
"All that this has taught the kid (any time there is a chance for him to get the short end of the stick, he does), is if you have money or are part of a special interest group, you get special treatment. Which leads him to resent others."

-- Listen, if that's what your kid is coming away with from this, then EVERYONE has failed this child. Seriously, it is literally unfathomable that anyone around this kid is going to allow him to have the takeaway of "fuck life is not fair being a white guy SUCKS" and to resent anyone. I'm letting my external bias from reading Warhammer's posts in other threads about all of the advantages non white people have these days color my judgement, so I'll admit to that but I'm not apologizing for it. Teach the damn kid a lesson about responsibility, about having respect for women, about how the world has worked for the last 2000 years and will continue to work for the duration of all of our lifetime's no matter how hard we try BECAUSE of these attitudes.

I posted this quote earlier in a reply to Jon, but now that we're down to the root of things here:

“Equality can feel like oppression. But it’s not. What you’re feeling is just the discomfort of losing a little bit of your privilege.”

Of course I don't know the individual situations your son has experienced, but I know your feelings on affirmative action and "fairness" and they come from a place of complete lack of empathy, they reek of desperately trying to hold on to a white privilege that honestly isn't going anywhere. Your kid comes from a good, white middle class family. He's got literally every advantage in the world. If you let him walk away from this situation resenting blacks or women without learning about the decades.. centuries of institutionalized racism and sexism and learning just the tiniest bit of empathy to understand that not everyone wins the genetic lottery like he did, then you've not only failed your child but you've failed our society as a whole.

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Old 02-12-2019, 01:18 AM   #37
thesloppy
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I'd like to see the Venn diagram of folks who think it's getting hard out here for white dudes, folks who regularly describe others as 'snow flakes' and folks who complain about the 'pussification' of the modern world.
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Old 02-12-2019, 04:37 AM   #38
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I'd like to see the Venn diagram of folks who think it's getting hard out here for white dudes, folks who regularly describe others as 'snow flakes' and folks who complain about the 'pussification' of the modern world.

Im not sure one circle counts as a venn diagram.
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Old 02-12-2019, 07:00 AM   #39
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“Equality can feel like oppression. But it’s not. What you’re feeling is just the discomfort of losing a little bit of your privilege.”

Its really incredible how violently some people resist the concept that really you should just try to be a decent human being.

This. It shouldn't be that hard either.
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Old 02-12-2019, 08:31 AM   #40
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That's a very insightful quote, Radii. I've never once had being a white male in the U.S. work against me. But I can think of all sorts of situations where it has worked in my advantage. For instance, I don't worry about getting shot if I get pulled over for speeding. I can walk down the street and not get a lot of suspicious looks, because I'm a respectable middle-aged white man.
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Old 02-12-2019, 08:56 AM   #41
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And the more we call out these situations, the more we have a chance to change and improve our culture going forward, the younger the better.

The problem is there are a lot of people, mostly older white men, who don't feel a culture change is needed or warranted. They will continue to blame the victim for letting their feelings get hurt rather than their behavior.

Earlier responses said it all.

In Warhammers case, the teacher who overheard should mind her own business. In my friends case she made an innocuous, non sexual joke and was given a response that was at best very poor taste and at worse harassment, but she is to blame for instigating the exchange.
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Old 02-12-2019, 10:22 AM   #42
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I've never once had being a white male in the U.S. work against me.




For the sake of discussion. I have, in the last week.
Last Wednesday I bid a job for the state of SC. I was low bid, but #2 was a MBE. So he got a 6% reduction on his bid price which was ~3% over mine.


2 hour after the bid, the owner of #2 called me. He does not have the manpower or expertise to complete the job. But he wants me to do the job for him as a sub-contractor and do it at his bid price. He will just keep the 3% margin.


He wants to make $150,000 for no work. Just for being an MBE. And you know what. I may do it. Because I can go be excellent at my job, beat our estimate, maybe find a couple change orders and make a couple hundred grand for my company and employ 21 more guys for 5 more months.


I dont have a problem with laws favoring minority business interests. I am just pointing out that it does happen.
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Old 02-12-2019, 10:24 AM   #43
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“Equality can feel like oppression. But it’s not. What you’re feeling is just the discomfort of losing a little bit of your privilege.”
And this is a knife that cuts both ways too....
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Old 02-12-2019, 11:27 AM   #44
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That's a very insightful quote, Radii. I've never once had being a white male in the U.S. work against me. But I can think of all sorts of situations where it has worked in my advantage. For instance, I don't worry about getting shot if I get pulled over for speeding. I can walk down the street and not get a lot of suspicious looks, because I'm a respectable middle-aged white man.
What is the demographics in the area you live in? I'll guess highly white?

As for the joke, why in God's Earth would he tell a teacher that, much less a female teacher? My middle school students have more restraint and at least say things under their breath. That being said, of it was some time thing,I don't see it as harrassment. If he repeats it,he deserves a nice long suspension. Half for the act and the other half for just being stupid.
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Old 02-12-2019, 11:30 AM   #45
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We're getting dangerously close to victim blaming here.

There was no fucking "victim". That right there is the problem with the world in a nutshell. Excusing this lunacy is bad enough, but attempting to justify it is comical.

Anybody offended enough by that joke to make an issue of it is wasting oxygen that some tree could have retained. Seriously.
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Old 02-12-2019, 11:30 AM   #46
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Mostly white, yes. Connecticut. But it was true when I lived in upstate New York, Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois (Chicago suburbs). Basically, I have always been in predominantly white middle-class suburbs.
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Old 02-12-2019, 11:34 AM   #47
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2. We're cool as guys with gay men making sexual innuendo towards us, right?

I asked myself that very question about the airplane story.

And, yep, it would have been just as fine had a gay male cracked that same line at me if I had made the same remark the so-called "victim" made.

It's a one-liner, and a rather obvious one at that. If you aren't over yourself enough to deal with that then there's really not much about you that could redeem you.
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Old 02-12-2019, 11:49 AM   #48
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I see the plane one-liner like this. It's not worth getting upset about, but it's might make you think "What a dick" to yourself.
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Old 02-12-2019, 04:59 PM   #49
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Of course I don't know the individual situations your son has experienced, but I know your feelings on affirmative action and "fairness" and they come from a place of complete lack of empathy, they reek of desperately trying to hold on to a white privilege that honestly isn't going anywhere. Your kid comes from a good, white middle class family. He's got literally every advantage in the world. If you let him walk away from this situation resenting blacks or women without learning about the decades.. centuries of institutionalized racism and sexism and learning just the tiniest bit of empathy to understand that not everyone wins the genetic lottery like he did, then you've not only failed your child but you've failed our society as a whole.

Well, I have typed up two separate responses and deleted them. Hopefully, third time is the charm.

I never realized that being my child was considered winning the genetic lottery, but ok. I would not say that my feelings come from a lack of empathy, but rather a not letting extraneous details get in the way of things. At some point, all adults make the transition from child to teen to adult. We can either choose to follow the path our parents laid out for us, or we can choose to do something different.

My wife is a great example of this. Her father left her mother when she was 5. For the next few years, her household did not donate to the Salvation Army, they were provided many things by the Salvation Army. After several years, her mom remarried and their prospects improved. However, no one paid for her schooling and she did not have the best grades. She paid her way through school using loans. Her older sisters both moved out by the time they were 17/18. She had a choice, no one would have blamed her if she moved out as soon as she could, but she stuck it through, went to college, and earned her degree.

I tell this story because it matches my beliefs. She had hardship in her life, but she made a game plan and pursued it to make a better life for herself. She did not have a stable home life. She was definitely not middle class, but she did what she needed to be able to provide for herself.

One of my best friends in college came from just outside of the projects in Chicago. He busted his ass and went to a college prep school in the NW suburbs. He got up every morning at 4:30 to take the train so he could get to school. He got a scholarship to Illinois in Champaign. What wasn't paid by the scholarship, he paid for by working in the cafeteria and as an RA. When he graduated, he got a job with Leo Burnett in Chicago which was one of the most prestigious advertising firms at the time.

I lost touch with a decent friend of mine growing up. We went to different high schools and lost touch. During this time, his parents split up. He lived with his mom along with his sister, and his mom could not keep up with their old house and had to move to a lower income neighborhood. His mother wanted him to go to college, instead, he enlisted in the army. His reason was he was so filled with anger over his dad leaving, and he needed discipline in his life. When he finished, he went to UT Knoxville on the GI Bill (or variation thereof). He got a degree in IT and wound up running the IT department of a couple of different hospitals in Memphis (I reconnected with him at this point). His sister died shortly after she gave birth, since the father had left, he took in his niece, and renovated his house so his mother could live with him and they could raise the baby. He moved to Minneapolis and was a big wig with IT at United Health (I believe it was United).

My point with these stories, and the latter two the subject of the stories were both black, this is from my experience, I have seen more success from people with broken homes pulling themselves up and not relying on handouts. They realized that to make a better life for themselves, they need to take ownership of their lives. In the second story, my buddy used his HS job to help pay for his HS tuition.

Compare these stories to one of my sister in laws that is waiting for her parents or someone else to come help her out. Doing the right thing on her own is too hard. The problem I have with her, is she has been extended a hand several times, and chose not to do it. My wife and I after we got married offered to give her free room and to hook her up with a job that would pay for college (not earn money for it, the company would pay for her schooling as well as pay her a wage). She is always waiting for someone else to do the work for her, rather than her taking ownership of her life.

In my case, the easy way to describe me was a mini-Ferris Bueller (not as popular though, and did not take any days off). My problem in college was I didn't know how to study. I also felt that it was the job of the professors to teach. What I did not understand early, it was MY responsibility to make sure I was making the most of the resources open to me. It was MY responsibility to make sure I was learning the material. It was MY responsibility to speak up when I needed help. It was not the school's, it wasn't the professor's, it wasn't my family's, it was MY job to make sure that I did what was required to graduate.

I do not care what you call it, but when some one grows up and takes ownership of their life, and realizes that they are ultimately the one that is in control of their life, they will be much happier. It is also empowering when you come to this realization. It applies to every aspect of society. At work, you are in control of how much value you bring to the organization. At well run businesses, you will be compensated in accordance to your value. If you think you are not, find another place to work. In relationships, you are in charge of the value you bring to the relationship. If you are not getting the value you believe you should, then you need to reevaluate the relationship.

I say all this because by taking control of your life (and holding yourself accountable for your actions), you wind up leading a fuller life. How would I apply this to the previous conversation, with regards to my son, he has to be aware of the situation. He has to evaluate whether the benefits of his actions are worth the risks.

Regarding a lack of empathy, no. As I mentioned, I have been the subject of unwanted advances from other males. I have had racial epithets and names hurled my way. I have a decision in these cases. I can allow them to have control over me by my reaction, or I can ignore it. I choose to ignore it. Depending upon the situation, if it gets to be too much, I leave. In these cases, I try to not let their words or comments have any control over me.

While we give to charity, I encourage my kids to do mission work in the US (not overseas), for several reasons. To help others. To see how others live and to appreciate what we have. To build bridges with those less fortunate than us. I also hope they learn to leave the world in a better place than when they found it. This is consistent with my ethos elucidated here, do what you can, what you can control, to make things better. Don't rely on Washington, don't rely on the government, try to help those around us ourselves. If we make a difference locally, than nationally things should take care of themselves.

If these beliefs mean I do not care for others, if it means I am trying to maintain my white privilege, if it means I put concerns about taking care of things locally first, so be it.
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Old 02-12-2019, 05:30 PM   #50
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That narrative on your own self-reliance is all fine and good, but you do realize that when you talk about your kid you take the exact opposite stance, right?

He's always "getting the short end of the stick" for not being rich enough, not being poor enough, been screwed over several times for not being a minority , ends up repeatedly in the principals office for other people's actions, and is now being improperly punished for sexually harassing a teacher, according to you.
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