Monday, August 22, 2005

Is the use of Sports terms in the workplace sexist

This issue was actually adressed as I was told that use of baseball terms in references to a case made a coworker feel excluded. The term in question was foul ball. At first I honestly thought it was a cruel hoax but my supervisor told me it was a real complaint.

The reaction of my male coworkers was a groan of resignation. However several female coworkers were agitated as they thought it was absurd. The notion that women do not understand baseball terms itself was sexist and trivialized real sexism. In fact only one person way out on the left agreed with the original complaint.

The bottom line was that common sense should have prevailed and the coworker ask what a foul ball was. Real sexism and sexual harassment is a major problem . I do sympathize and empathize with people who are made to feel threatened and unsafe in the work place.

Another coworker had an entirely unique but interesting opinion. Baseball is part of the American culture and thus the person in question should try to familiarize herself with American Culture. I do not even want to think of where Pop culture references like Vanilla Ice and Rubiks Cube fit into that discusion.

Most PC problems like this could have been solved with common courtesy.


Warren said...

Quite frankly Beak,
The co-worker that complained must be a real stupid.

I can't imagine anyone that has lived in American society, not knowing what the term "foul ball" means. They schould at least have picked it up through context even if they don't know squat about baseball.

What if you had said it "wasn't cricket", most people would know that you meant it wasn't fair even if they aren't English or know beans about the game.

I mean, I know what a shmok/schmuck is, (your co-worker), and I don't feel left out because I don't speak yiddish.

Mr. Beamish the Instablepundit said...

I've always found the phrase "If you're not offended, f*ck you" the best way to handle someone's dainty feelings encroaching on my free speech.