Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Maybe She's Thinking About Captain Caveman or The Flinstones!!

The Los Angeles Times is reporting that soon after Sarah Palin was elected mayor of Wasilla, Alaska, she startled a local music teacher by insisting in casual conversation that men and dinosaurs coexisted on an Earth created 6,000 years ago--about 65 million years after scientists say most dinosaurs became extinct -- the teacher said.

After conducting a college band and watching Palin deliver a commencement address to a small group of home-schooled students in June 1997, Wasilla resident Philip Munger said, he asked the young mayor about her religious beliefs.

Palin told him that "dinosaurs and humans walked the Earth at the same time," Munger said. When he asked her about prehistoric fossils and tracks dating back millions of years, Palin said "she had seen pictures of human footprints inside the tracks," recalled Munger, who teaches music at the University of Alaska in Anchorage and has regularly criticized Palin in recent years on his liberal political blog, called Progressive Alaska.

The idea of a "young Earth" -- that God created the Earth about 6,000 years ago, and dinosaurs and humans coexisted early on -- is a popular strain of creationism.


Using Complaints From "Everyone" To Target Black Employees

-- Everyone says you’re an extremely negative person.

--Everyone says you're difficult to work with.

--Everyone says you’re angry and defensive.

Have you been on the receiving end of an “Everyone says…” at work?

Well, I have. At my previous job, everyone supposedly said they couldn’t get along with me and I was told that everyone in the company (inside AND outside my department) believed that I was angry and defensive. But, that’s not where things ended. Eventually, when it was clear that every comment being made about me was personality-based and not work-related, which violated company policy, I was suddenly told that “everyone” thought I had a problem managing my time and projects and that “every” task leader I worked with said they never knew what I was working on and that I didn’t complete my assignments on time.

This was only 9 months after receiving a great performance evaluation that said I was “team oriented,” “a joy to work with,” “pleasant,” “provided updates,” etc. Not only did a recent performance review contradict what was being said about me, but it turned out that my employers were forced to make a stunning admission in an external investigation. Yes, even I was shocked when they admitted that “Only one person could be found that stated…”

Why the change of heart? No, they didn’t investigate and realize they made a mistake when accusing me of performance deficiencies. They just straight got caught up in a lie. That’s because I would and I will not let anyone make blanket assertions about me that are completely untrue or that have been exaggerated to forward someone’s personal agenda/vendetta against me.

And, that’s the moral of the story.

Just because some so-called authority at your company (read: your supervisor/manager, director, etc.) proclaims that “everyone” at your job holds a certain negative opinion of you, it doesn’t make the proclamation true.

If you find yourself on the receiving end of what is alleged to be a tag-team accusation, start doing some serious questioning of whoever is making the assertion. You should:

--Find out who is allegedly saying these things about you. Ask for names.

--Even if names are provided, ask for the context of the comments or charges against you. In what situations are you alleged to have behaved inappropriately?

--Ask for those making accusations against you to put those comments in writing! Then, ask to see the written comments. If your employer says they don’t want to break the confidentiality of those mounting the charges against you (assuming they won’t provide you with the names of your accusers), tell them to remove the names from your copy of the accusations. They can simply strike through any names with a black magic marker, which will allow you to see the specific allegations being made about you without revealing the names. Always remember, just because someone is willing to put something in writing doesn’t make it true, although your employer may argue the opposite. People have agendas. I’ve worked with a Black coworker who bragged about making false accusations against her Black manager.

--Go through all of the allegations and refute them, line-by-line. Professionally attack the lies and half-truths. Be thorough. Anything you don’t address might come back to haunt you later. Do not lie! Just present a factual response.

--Always find out what specific policy(ies) you supposedly violated. If you are being reprimanded with some sort of employment action (demotion, transfer, pay cut, etc.), you should ask for a copy of the written policy that supports the decision. If you are not provided with a copy of the policy, from the current version of the personnel manual (not something your employer throws together), ask for a copy to be given to you—immediately. Ask what criteria were used to decide on the penalty you received. Ask that your employer justify the action—in writing!

--If you feel your punishment was extreme, find out why lesser remedies (oral or written warning, etc.) were not seen as a resolution to the problem.

--If you believe you were the victim of outright lies and an orchestrated campaign to get you in trouble, make an official request for an internal investigation. Provide any evidence you have and identify how any of your accusers are linked. For instance, the person who first reported you is the subordinate of someone you have problems with and that person has close ties to someone else who is making false accusations, etc. Try to tear down the house of cards by pointing out any inconsistencies that you can prove.

Hopefully, if you’ve been having any problems with staff, you’ve been documenting what’s been going on. Compile all of your evidence and use it to clear your name. If not, your case may come down to you say vs. they say. This will likely not come out in your favor, since your employer can argue that “they” have corroboration. They may not have evidence, but they are telling the same story.

Try to find anyone who can support your version of events and get a written statement from them. Think about staff who can write a very glowing character reference for you. Troll through your recent performance reviews for any statements that contradict what’s been said about you. Build a case in your favor. No one will do it for you!

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Monday, September 29, 2008

I Want Someone Like Me

As I listen to White people starting to show some erosion on the issue of whether or not Sarah Palin was ever qualified to be nominated for Vice President of the US, I can't help but think about all of the White people I've worked with who've talked about trying to find new hires that were a "good fit," or who were "like us."

The full quotes went something like, "It's really important that we get someone in here who fits in." That's always had racial overtones for me, coming out of an HR background. I remember when ads used to read that companies were looking for qualified AA candidates. And, I remember being told by the compensation and benefits manager that AA stood for "All American." How many times do you think a Black man or woman or any other minority is going to fall into the category of being the perfect All American for a job?

It's not a thing of the past. Racial codes and racial innuendo are still prevelant in the workplace.

We need a good fit!

When people come in for an interview, you don't know that person. You know what you see and you know what they've said about themselves on their application/CV, etc. So, when you set out to look for a good fit, can you really say that race, color, weight, etc. aren't some of the factors that get included in determining if someone BELONGS?

Sarah Palin was supposed to be a good fit because she was All American. No one came out and said it, but they did say, "She's just like us." But, it's funny. Only a White woman could be damn near congratulated on having her unmarried teenage daughter turn up pregnant. Forget teen mothers, Black adult women, who are single, are still bad-mouthed for having had a child out-of-wedlock. But, a White teen does it and now it's something commendable because of the family struggle and unity and a mother wanting the best for her child.

But, it didn't stop there. Sarah Palin was "one of us" because she hunted, and ate mooseburgers, and was a former beauty pageant contestant, and had kids, and--like I said--a pregnant teen. That was all this White woman needed for qualifications. It didn't matter that she flunked out of a couple of community colleges and attended about 4 more colleges before getting her B.A. She was one of us and her qualifications couldn't be challenged.

But, Sarah Palin's not like me. She isn't like anyone I KNOW. Yet, she was being sold as being like us. Meaning being like WHITE WORLD. All American.

It's funny because a Black, Harvard educated man is still being called unready and unqualified.

WHO'S LIKE US? In the workplace, if you get more than 2 applications, this is what people are trying to decide. Are you like us? And, everyone takes it to mean something else. Black vs. White. Educated vs. Limited Education. Educated vs. Educated. All things being equal. Who do you pick?

Bush was "one the guys." He was someone everyone wanted to drink a beer with. That seems to be all you need in White world to get ahead.

I've seen so many people that "fit" come into an office and screw everything up because--like Bush--they didn't know what the hell they were doing, they worked by committee because they needed tons of assistance to do their job, and they caused problems within and sometimes outside their department. I've seen so many "fits" be hired that the entire dynamic in an office was changed. Everyone was the same and it wasn't for the betterment of the department or the company.

Dangerous things can happen, when you look for "fit." You can increase the level of existing racism, elitism, and other "isms" in a company by using the wrong basis for finding who will fit in. You can turn an office into a racial feeding ground. Everything can become Black or White. Race-based harassment, discrimination, and retaliation can go through the roof based on hiring decisions, which may lead to heightened incidences of racism and a stronger tolerance for race-based decision-making.

We need to learn to stop focusing on "fit" as the primary indicator of qualification. This is true in politics and in the workplace.

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Don't Forget To Watch the Debate Tonight at 9 PM E.S.T.

Before you check out the new post, below, I wanted to remind you not to forget to tune into the Presidential debate tonight at 9 pm, E.S.T.

For those who haven’t heard, John McCain is threatening not to attend because he wanted the media to talk about something other than the fact that he knows nothing about the economy, his poll numbers are starting to slip, and his VP candidate can’t articulately answer a single question.

Speaking of McCain, I'd like to share this quote from his memoir:

"I have craved distinction in my life," McCain wrote in his 2002 political memoir, "Worth the Fighting For." "I have wanted renown and influence for their own sake. That is, of course, the great temptation of public life. ... I have never been able to conquer it permanently, but I have tried."

The Blogger says, “Anyone who votes for McCain is going to get exactly what they have coming to them, if he wins!” This isn't the only time he's spoken about power for the sake of power. He's previously said that he wanted to be President not because of patiotism, but because he's always wanted to hold the office.


The Wall of Silence: I Didn't See or Hear Anything!!

Chit-chatting with my mom, she started talking about some of the White people at her job. She said, “No matter how long you work with them, you can never count on the White people to tell the truth! You just don’t know what they’re gonna say.”

Ain’t that the truth?

My mom was talking about the fact that she’s had things happen (e.g., offensive comments made to her by a White person) that she’s had to respond to (e.g., informing the person that they were not going to speak to her in a nasty manner), but when she’s said, “Well, x, y, and z were there and can tell you what happened,” x, y, and z (all White) would say they didn’t hear anything because they were distracted by something, were talking, reading a paper, on their phone, etc. But, they did, in fact, see and hear what transpired.

While some people don't have any problem lying to protect a coworker (based on racial solidarity and other factors), others will pretend they have nothing to contribute to the conversation because they don't know anything.

I’ve experienced this myself and I’m sure many of you have as well. The fact of the matter is that Black workers can’t count on White coworkers to tell the truth about what they know, when an incident has jumped off. It doesn’t even have to be race-related, on the surface. If a Black worker and White worker are involved in any level of dispute, it’s hard to get White coworkers, who’ve witnessed the interaction, to fess up to what they saw and heard. It can be hard to get Black workers to speak up, as well. But, generally, White workers are often more prone to helping build a wall of silence around someone who is out of line, has violated federally protected rights, etc. It’s called looking about for your own.

So, Black workers are often forced into a situation that is he said/she said, when there may be many witnesses who could shed some light on who is right or wrong in a situation.

What’s interesting is that when the Black worker is at fault, these same White coworkers are likely to be truthful and to speak up when asked—or they may volunteer information to help a White coworker or manager. It’s only when a White worker is at fault that we get the wall of silence. Everyone becomes an enabler.

The typical wall of silence is one of the reasons I keep stressing that targeted Black workers document all events at work and maintain hard copies and electronic copies of emails, memos, instructions, etc. If we are blamed for problems we didn’t cause, we can’t count on White coworkers supporting our contention that we were following the verbal instructions provided to the team. And, we can’t count on people of any race being truthful in an investigation. Many people decide that they will “mind their business,” when a really sensitive issue has hit the office.

Black workers need to expect that they will have the burden of proving their complaint/case on their own. We must document everything, including conversations and other face-to-face exchanges in the workplace. Here’s what we can do:

Always note the date and time of incidents and add the names of witnesses to the notation. If your witness has a relationship with your harasser, you want to make a note of that too. For instance, if one of the witnesses is lunch buddies with a person you are having a dispute with, then you want to document that in writing because it shows a potential motivation to lie.

If the witness participated in the interaction that took place, you want to make a note of that too. For instance, if the witness told your harasser they were out of line, to stop, to leave, etc. you want to make a note of that the same way you would note that they egged your harasser on by joining in on verbal attacks or physical intimidation. You need to focus on characterizing how everyone is involved in each incident. This might mean someone overheard events or participated in events on a minor or major scale.

The wall of silence can be broken, but Black workers have to do their part by showing that their complaints have merit and by keeping a list of who saw and heard the events that were taking place. That information can be passed on to an investigator or lawyer, who has a better chance of getting some form of cooperation out of the individuals involved.

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Thursday, September 25, 2008


Someone cracked a joke on a political message board saying, when it comes to Barack Obama, C.H.A.N.G.E. stands for "Come Help a Ni**er Get Elected!" This is what we are dealing with in 2008 and this what we will continue to deal with in many different venues, outside of politics.

We don't exist in bubbles. People that crack "jokes" like this work somewhere and they may be someone's manager! It's just indicative of the mindset that Blacks still must fight against.

We do need change! Real change with a new face!!!

IF YOU AREN'T REGISTERED TO VOTE, GO TO WWW.VOTEFORCHANGE.COM TO REGISTER! Get involved in this election or simply follow what is happening because politics matter. Remember Hurricane Katrina...

Enough said!!

Saying "No" To Whites at Work!

I had medical appointments yesterday and some today, so here's a reprint of a popular post about the drama associated with saying "no" to Whites in the workplace.

I dare you to go to work and tell a White person an emphatic “no” to their next request. If you’re not adventurous enough to say “no,” just say, “Sorry, I can’t help you.” Watch their eyes glaze over and their jaw set. You might as well have smacked the White person in the face. See, I’ve been there and I’ve experienced this more than once. You tell a White person “no,” and it looks like you zapped the person with a stun gun. It’s really just ridiculous.

Whites can take “no” from another White person (even if they don’t like that response), but some Whites just get down right indignant when they get the same answer from a Black person.

So, go ahead. Tell a White coworker the word “no!”

Once you say “no,” notice how you are immediately on the receiving end of a look that screams, “Who the hell do you think you are? You can’t say no to me.” Yes, it’s almost like they think they own you. You are supposed to drop whatever you are doing because they have asked you to do something else. This perception, that you should drop everything, will even sometimes come from White people who are junior to you. So, what do you do?

When I have to tell a coworker “no” to a request, I always provided a reason why I’ve given that response. I’ll make suggestions, if I have ideas on who else might be able to assist them or I will tell them where they can go to get help.

But, here’s the thing. A White person will get mad at a Black person for denying a request, even if that White person has:

--made a last minute request because they failed to properly manage their work;
--made a last minute request because they chose to let an assignment sit on their desk until the last minute;
--made a last minute request because they preferred that someone else do the work, but when that person wasn’t able to do it, they decided to settle on another coworker;
--failed to properly manage the expectations of clients by intentionally promising work before it can realistically be done by anyone in the office (in an attempt to impress the client with a quick turnaround time);
--failed to properly manage the expectations of clients, by not explaining processes and timing/scheduling of work.

Yes, sometimes things happen and you have to impose upon a coworker. However, mismanagement of work, people, and projects often causes more problems than any spur of the moment issues.

Despite any reasons why someone’s request is imposing upon a Black person performing their duties, we are supposed to drop everything. Because, there is often an innate feeling that Black workers don’t have anything better to do. Everything we work on is assumed to be so marginal that it can be dropped at any given time. And, that’s why “no” doesn’t go over well when those two letters fall over the full lips of a brother or a sister on the job.

Regardless of why something can’t be done (even if it is known ahead of time that a task is nearly impossible to complete), a Black person is supposed to bend over backwards and try to make it work anyway. Why? Because we have been asked and because we are often perceived to be darn near owned by the company and its employees (of a certain race). Or, so some people think!

And, that’s the kicker. Because of “perceptions,” there is a palpable anger that develops when a White worker has been told “no” by a Black coworker. That anger often turns into a power struggle. To gain dominance, and out of anger, a White worker will often report a Black person to their supervisor and will now refer to the Black person as being:

--not a team player

The power struggle is designed to make sure that Black person relearns who is in charge. It’s the ultimate double-standard. Black workers often don’t have the basic right to say “no” without it being construed as having to do with a so-called attitude, instead it of just being about business.

We are believed incapable of appreciating the “big picture,” company protocol, deadlines/prioritizing work, ethics requirements, and/or fiscal responsibility (e.g., not performing unnecessary or redundant work, etc.).

At far too many companies, many African Americans don’t believe they have a right to disagree and take a contrary position to a White person because they fear it will make them appear to be confrontational. And, that means we fall right into the hands of those who wish to prevent us from excelling at work. We remain silent. We let people take advantage of us and our fears of labels and retaliation. And, we often cow-tow to the will of nearly every White person who engages us, regardless of whether or not they are in our chain-of-command, in our department, etc.

It’s the plantation, y’all. Except this time, they don’t have us working out in the sun. Those jobs are for the immigrants. Or, should I say illegal aliens.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

"We Are Not Racists!"

When racially-based issues take place in the workplace and a Black employee is complaining about mitreatment from a White supervisor, employers might choose between several tactics, including:

1) Deny everything!

2)Blame the complainant by turning the victim into the bad guy and by pointing out alleged deficiencies with the victim’s behavior. In other words, they will justify why the victim was targeted for mistreatment and may even try to set the employee up for termination.

3)When backed into a corner, an employer may lay all of the blame on the offending supervisor and may declare, "We are not racists!" or "That's not how we run this business" or they may say something like, "We value diversity here. We don't tolerate discrimination." Then, they may try to portray the supervisor as some kind of anomaly and act like it is the craziest thing that they could end up with a racist in their ranks. After letting the supervisor run wild, they may tell you about how they plan on sending the supervisor to training or engaging in some other actions.

Here's the thing about #3...

In the Supreme Court decision for Kolstad v. American Dental Association, 119 S. Ct. 401, (1998) the court says, “The test for imposition of punitive damage is the mental sate of the harasser, not of the higher-level officials…”

Therefore, it doesn’t matter how reasonably or fairly the employer may have acted or would have acted; they may be still liable for the illegal behavior of their staff, supervisors, etc. based on the totality of events that took place at your job. It doesn't matter what lines they want to feed you about them "not being like that." Employers are responsible for their hiring and management decisions. If your federal rights were being violated, it doesn't matter what the state of mind was for high-level members of management. That's irrelevant. What matters is the intent and motivation of your harasser.

The EEOC states that:

“…an employer is liable for punitive damages if its supervisor commits unlawful harassment or other discriminatory conduct with malice or with reckless indifference to the employee’s federally protected rights.”

So, your employer may still have legal liability and may have to pay punitive damages to you, depending on the specific circumstances.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Charged for Rape Kits!

Any regular reader of this blog knows that I include updates on the Presidential election because there is too much at stake to ignore it. Besides, I think we all understand that decisions made by any president will impact our careers, insurance benefits and premiums, ability to pursue or continue a higher education, etc.

Today's blurb from the political world is the news that GOP Vice Presidential nominee, Sarah Palin, allowed a policy to exist which charged women for their own rape kits. A rape victim would be charged as much as $1,000, while Mrs. Palin was mayor of Wasilla, Alaska.

Her aides say she didn't know what was going on, but a police chief and councilman were fighting to make the rape kits free and this was information that would have passed the mayor's desk. They say it is ludicrous that the mayor, Sarah Palin, didn't know women were being victimized again. In order to have any hope of finding their assailant and/or proving a case of rape, these women had to fork over big bucks to get a rape kit. It should be noted that Alaska has always ranked high in the country for the rape and murder of women by men.

Sarah Palin says she'll champion for women's rights, but her record and stances on many issues shows what kind of leader she has been and will be in regard to women's rights.

Why the focus on Sarah Palin? Clearly, the GOP and McCain, in particular, are trying to ride Gov. Palin's gender all the way to the White House. They are running as almost a co-presidency. She will be a very powerful person, should McCain win. We'd all better know what we are getting and we had all better register to vote and turn out to vote on November 4th.

If you aren't registered, go to www.voteforchange.com to register to vote! There's a link on this blog.

Beware of Employer Delays

If you were forced to file an internal complaint against a coworker or supervisor alleging race-based discrimination, harassment, retaliation, etc., you probably learned a thing or two about how an employer (read: The Human Resources Department) can drag out an internal investigation.

Instead of engaging in a prompt and serious investigation of the facts, many an HR team will pursue a strategy of delay and then deny. They will prolong any investigation, hoping the employee will just let the issue die. Or, perhaps they will use the delay to retaliate against the employee, with the hopes of forcing them to resign (constructive termination) before the investigation is complete. Sometimes, the delay is used to give the false assurance that the investigation is being conducted thoroughly — leaving no stone unturned. The reality is that the company may be just using that time to come up with a counter defense to all of an employee’s arguments and evidence that validate illegal mistreatment in the workplace.

After all the hemming and hawing, these delayed investigations sometimes end up with the internal investigating team telling the complaining employee that they couldn’t find any evidence of wrongdoing on anyone’s part. Or, if HR acknowledges wrongdoing, HR may downplay the impact of any offending and illegal actions that the victim was subjected to. This may be followed by the employer promising the complaining employee that the offending employee or supervisor will be “dealt with.” In other words, the complaining employee may be promised that corrective steps will be taken to rectify the race-based harassment, etc.

But, what happens, when an employee is promised that misconduct will be rectified, but the employer does nothing to correct the behavior of the offending employee? And, is there something else afoot, when it comes to these delays in internal investigations?

When it comes to filing a complaint with an external agency (e.g., The Office of Human Rights or the EEOC), employees only have a certain number of days—after a race-based incident—to file a complaint. For instance, an employee may have 90 or 180 days to file a complaint with an outside agency.

So, the reality is that some companies will try to delay any internal investigation with the hopes of causing an employee to miss deadlines with outside investigatory agencies. If an employee files a complaint and it is accepted based on the fraudulent delay of the employer, the employer may try to argue that the complainant missed the deadline and, therefore, the entire investigation/complaint should be dismissed on that basis.

However, according to legal decisions an employer can’t engage in acts or omissions that serve to lull a complaining employee into foregoing a prompt attempt to vindicate his/her rights. Specifically:

“If an employer actively misleads an employee into missing the deadline for filing a charge by dragging out its investigation and assuring the employee that the harassment will be rectified, then the employer will be “equitably estopped” from challenging the delay.” (Currier v. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Inc., 159 F.3d 1363 (D.C. Cir. 1998)


“An employer’s affirmatively misleading statements that a grievance will be resolved in the employee’s favor can establish an equitable estoppel.” (Miranda v. B&B Cash Grocery Store, Inc., 975 F.2d 1518, 1531 (11th Cir. 1992)

So, if your employer has engaged in behavior that caused you to miss a complaint filing deadline with an outside agency, you can argue that you missed the deadline because you were misled and delayed by the intentionally manipulative actions of your employer. If the employer tries to get the complaint thrown out, based on the missed deadline, there is legal precedent for overruling that argument.

Friday, September 19, 2008

THIS is who you would put up against a Harvard graduate?

I was forwarded a Youtube clip form a friend and had to share it today. It’s perfect, since I’m stressed for time today. This clip goes back to my posts, last week, about unqualified White workers (e.g., like Sarah Palin).

I believe the man speaking is Pastor Bryant, who is talking about how Republicans have said Sarah Palin was nominated because she represents the best of the Republican Party. The clip is about 7 minutes long. If you don’t want to listen to the entire thing, start at the 4th minute because that’s when it really takes off.

I loved the part, when he said (after talking about Palin flunking out of two community colleges and taking 7 years to get her degree): “This is who you would put up against a Harvard graduate? You’ve got the right and the nerve to speak out against a Black man who is educated, trained, loves his family and is doing all to represent his daughters…Even if you’re from the ghetto and get a degree, they’re still gonna put up somebody from a trailer park and say that’s somebody who is better than you!...”

To see the Youtube clip you can cut and paste http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Al_y3g77ZsA or CLICK ON THE TITLE OF THIS POST.

By the way, Sarah Palin is qualified to be Vice President and possibly President because she's got the foreign relations credentials of:




I love how White people can hype themselves to the world. Obama being on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is nothing to Republicans because true foreign relations credibility can only be found in a moose-eating White woman, who just got her first passport last year.

Gotta laugh at racism and hypocrisy!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Nothing Like Racism For Breakfast!

Gotta step away from workplace racism today to share this with you…

According to the Associated Press, Republican conservative activists created and sold fake packages of Obama Waffles at the Values Voters Summit. They are now selling the offensive packages online (domestically and internationally).

Now, the waffles were supposed to be a funny way of calling Obama a flip-flopper, but it became blatantly racist, when they portrayed Obama on the front of the fake package smiling like Sambo. Or, maybe I should say he looks like the old Aunt Jemima image…bug-eyed with a big-tooth smile. But, that’s not all…

The top flap of the box shows Obama in a turban.

On the back of the box, Obama is depicted in stereotypical Mexican dress, including a sombrero, above a recipe for "Open Border Fiesta Waffles" that says it can serve "4 or more illegal aliens." The recipe includes a tip: "While waiting for these zesty treats to invade your home, why not learn a foreign language?"

But, they couldn’t stop there! No, they also made fun of Michelle Obama and brought up Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Apparently, there are rap lyrics that are supposed to be coming from Obama because—he’s Black.

The guys selling the waffles said they never saw any racism, but had a few people mention it to them. They said the way they depicted Obama is no different than someone like Paul Newman on his own products. I haven’t seen the Paul Newman Sambo salad dressing. Have you?

To try to get away with the overt racism on the box, they say it’s political satire…like The New Yorker magazine cover that depicted Barack and Michelle Obama as an Islamic extremist and Black militant, respectively. Nice try, but it’s a lie. The box is just racist.

The makers have a website, which I won’t promote on my blog. But, the link to the Associated Press article can be found at: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080913/ap_on_el_pr/obama_waffles_4


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Filing Internal Complains With Your HR Department

If you have to file an internal complaint, you should always have a positive outlook as far as hoping your complaint is being taken seriously and is being fully investigated to find the facts and bring about a suitable resolution to a problem. But, you should also understand the reality of dealing with HR departments, which is that HR operates to protect the organization. That is the main goal. HR staff are often the liaisons between staff and management, but that doesn't mean that they are pro-employee.

You never know, though. You could be lucky enough to have someone in HR that really has your back and will fight for you and/or clear you of wrongdoing and/or will tell the truth about inappropriate or illegal behavior committed by a coworker or manager. But, that doesn't happen often enough to bank on having that type of support from an HR rep or manager.

I think it's always healthier to hope for the best, even if you expect the worst. But, you should always know what the worst may be. In some cases, the worst of HR involves HR escalating a race-based issue at work and being an active participant in helping management target an employee and, possibly, to set up an employee for termination.

I'm not saying that is automatically the case, I'm just saying be aware of how things can transpire. HR staff can often be very persuasive, as far as telling you they are listening and they care about you, and they want you to be happy at work. But, they can be very two-faced, when you aren't around.

When you first report a grievance to HR, don’t be surprised if the HR staff say lots of things you want to hear, such as:

• “I’m on your side.” (said with a hand near the heart)
• “I’m sorry that happened to you.” (said with a tear in the corner of the left eye)
• “I’m sorry that was said to you.” (said as they lean over and touch your hand)
• “I’m absolutely shocked! I can’t believe someone said that!” (said with wide eyes and finishing with a gaping mouth)
• “We’ll get to the bottom of this.” (said with the slight fist pounding of a table or through clenched teeth)

That’s the boilerplate language and acting skills that they’re all programmed with. Trust me, as soon as you finish your grievance meeting, HR goes right back into company protection mode. I’ve worked in HR, so I know what I’m talking about on this one. If the problem can be shifted from a supervisor, project manager, executive or the company--as a whole--back onto you, it will be done. If the problem can’t be shifted back to you, it will be marginalized or dismissed. You’ll hear something like, “We only have your word against hers. If we had a witness….” Or, “We’ve investigated and couldn’t confirm that anything unseemly took place.”

It really boils down to this; the company won’t set itself up for business liabilities by siding with an employee regarding a serious matter that involved a breach of corporate policy and procedure or a violation of Federal law. In racially charged incidences at work, HR staff will do their best to make sure that no one is fired, no one actually apologizes, and to convince you that you have completely blown the situation out of proportion.

If they make a promise to you, HR will tell you they’ve spoken to the individual involved and can assure you that the incident won’t happen again. Or, they will say that the person has suffered consequences they can’t tell you about. However, you are entitled to know the penalties levied against someone who has harassed you or engaged in other illegal activities.

Unfortunately, far too many HR departments are more concerned with sweeping things under the rug than solving serious issues related to race. They don’t want to agitate the hornet’s nest of racism at the job, so they often prefer to remain silent on the issue or to discredit a complaining employee and/or take actions that include trying to run an employee out of their job.

The ultimate way HR protects a company is to make sure that anyone who broke Federal law(s) never formally acknowledges what happened in writing, never apologizes for what was said or done and is not terminated for what occurred. Those scenarios, if played out immediately, would actually go along way in protecting the company from legal liability by showing they took immediate actions against a perpetrator of racially-based harassment or retaliation.

However, instead of seeing these steps as a remedy, far too many HR representatives and managers see a formal apology or firing as an admission of guilt that they don’t want the victim to possess. Why? It’s a fear of litigation. If an HR department mishandled an incident, if HR or senior executives participated in illegal conduct or if it took HR forever to stop your mistreatment, they have a potentially serious liability issue under Federal law. Federal law requires that employers act quickly to stop harassment and other forms of abuse in the workplace.

Unfortunately, many HR departments end up bungling racially-based incidences at work. Why? Most times it boils down to the fact that White managers, supervisors, and coworkers are simply given the benefit of the doubt as a matter of course. Conversely, African Americans are considered to have childlike emotions and to be unable to distinguish between major and minor incidences. There is a belief we are overly sensitive, angry, defensive, uppity, and confrontational. There is also the stereotypical belief that African Americans are lazy and, therefore, don’t like to work. As a result, there’s a perception that a White manager may have to ride an African American hard to get us to do our job. In American society, African Americans are often accused of wanting a handout. Because of this, some people think we come to work to collect a check, but don’t want to actually earn our pay by working for it.

In the minds of far too many HR staff, we, African Americans, likely caused or substantially contributed to whatever actions or comments were made by White staff. We brought it on ourselves, we misunderstood what happened, we’re too damn sensitive, or we’re simply making up issues in order to play the race card.

I guess, it’s simply easier to believe the negatives about African Americans than allegations being made by an African American against a White person. If you add to that the fact that some White people don’t like to penalize each other to the benefit of or for the sake of someone Black, you can see how many racially-charged incidences end up being brushed aside in the workplace and by HR staff.

Again, I hope this doesn't happen to you, but you shouldn't be surprised if HR ends up protecting your harasser and not you! If that's the case, you have others ways to vindicate your rights, such as seeking legal counsel and/or filing a complaint with an agency like the EEOC or the Office of Human Rights.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

New Website: Vote For Change

Barack Obama just set up a website, www.voteforchange.com, which makes it’s easy to register to vote, to request an application to vote by absentee ballot, and to find your polling location.

Pass along the website address to all of your family and friends and ask them to pass along the link because you never know who isn’t registered to vote in this very important presidential election.

If you’ve got a blog or website, please put a link on your site!

Blacks and Workplace Racism

I’ve had many conversations with friends about workplace racism. While we talk about all of the crap that Whites in the workplace put us through, we also have many conversations about how Black workers often, knowingly and unknowingly, assist the White establishment in executing actions against a targeted Black employee.

I can remember the first time I saw a major race-related issue break out at work. I’m not talking about a minor skirmish or a brief back and forth between a worker and one manager. By break out, I mean that this was the first time I really saw a major fight brewing between a Black worker and the entire power structure at the company. And, it was the first time I saw a significant number of Black workers, who were intimately involved in what was happening and who had something at stake in the events, react to what was going on.

To put it mildly, I was completely overwhelmed with both disappointment and disgust at the Black workers involved in the situation at work. Yes, I can understand the natural fear that any worker would have, as far as sticking your neck on the line for another employee. But, in this case, these workers had actually encouraged a Black supervisor to stand up and speak for them because they were too afraid to complain about offensive comments made by a White manager at a staff meeting. I remember all of these Black workers talking a good game and saying they’d had enough and this time things were gonna change. So, they pushed to have this White manager confronted.

When it was all said and done and the Black manager was falsely accused of calling this White manager a “racist,” not a single one of these Black employees could remember any offensive remarks being made or of asking the Black manager to speak to the White manager about causing offense. “It didn’t bother me” and “I didn’t say I had a problem with it” were NOW the types of comments that were being made once the proverbial s%it hit the fan!

It was sickening. But, as the situation escalated for the Black manager, the behavior of the Black staff got even worse. Her Black subordinates and coworkers within her department turned on her in ways that you would not imagine.

Here’s some of what the Black workers said about the Black manager and did to her, which assisted the company in stripping the Black manager of her staff, assigning her menial work, and making false accusations against her:

• They said they didn’t hear any offensive remarks or didn’t take them to be offensive;

• They denied asking the Black manager to complain to the White manager about her offensive comments;

• They told the Black manager to apologize—even though she didn’t do anything wrong and was being responsive to the requests of her subordinates to address offensive behavior;

• They said the Black manager should “just let them [Whites] win” and should stop complaining and fighting back against harassment, retaliation, and a hostile work environment;

• They signed false statements against the Black manager that were written by White management;

• They suddenly and falsely accused the Black manager of being a bad manager, of being rude, of physically attacking them and fighting them at work, of turning them into “running dogs,” etc;

• They laughed at her behind her back and snickered in her face because her work was taken from her and divided among her subordinates—resulting in the subordinates feeling they had more power and respect in the department;

• They isolated the Black manager by not speaking to her, and/or being disrespectful or dismissive, when they did talk to her;

• They expressed pride in getting the new White managers they were assigned or felt they would benefit more from having a White manager;

• They took unspoken bribes to take the company’s side of the complaint or to remain silent about what they knew—in the form of unprecedented salary increases, bonuses, never before conducted market increases (solely for their department), tickets to sporting events, etc.

These Black workers made out like bandits on the back of another Black employee. They had no shame in what they’d done. This is despite the fact that this manager had put her neck on the line to fight for decent pay increases for many of these workers and had suggested promotions for others. This was her reward. When Whites put a target on her back, they helped cock the gun and pull the trigger.

Crabs in a barrel!

We play right into the hands of racists way too often.

Sometimes, I wonder if we haven’t conditioned ourselves, as a people, to be part of the problem and not part of the solution. When we see a Black person down, we immediately think that it’s their problem and has nothing to do with us.

“I don’t want to get involved.”

But, then I realize that not everyone is going to be part of the struggles that will benefit us all. Some people prefer to ride other people’s coattails. That’s how it’s been and that’s how it always will be. But, that doesn’t mean the struggle is any less important and that those of us, who are willing to fight, shouldn’t put our blood, sweat, and tears into doing whatever we can to change things for the better.

Keep your heads up and think about being part of the solution! That’s the thought for today!!

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Monday, September 15, 2008

New Blog Email

FYI - There's a new email address for this blog. If you want to hit me with an email, send your questions, comments and/or suggestions to blackfactorblog@yahoo.com.

Investigator Q & A

I'm not recovering as quickly as I'd like from this back and neck pain. So, here's a reprint of some of the questions you can expect to be asked by an investigator, when and if you file and external complaint about race-based harassment, discrimination and/or retaliation.

--Who is bullying, intimidating, discriminating or retaliating against you?

--What specifically happened?

--What comments were made?

--What actions were taken?

--Was this a one-time incident? What day and time did this occur?

-- If this happened more than once, how many times were you subjected to this behavior, these actions, etc.? (Describe each situation)

--Is it still continuing?

--If so, what was the most recent incident?

--What was the impact? (State the professional and personal consequences that occurred as a result of the actions taken against you)

Think about tangible employment actions, which are any actions taken by employers or their agents that impact hiring, firing, promotions, transfers, disability etc. Tangible employment actions are negative changes in your employment status.

--Describe how certain actions led to you being denied a promotion or terminated from your job, etc.

--Are you now being subjected to an offensive work environment marked by intimidation, harassment, bullying, disparate/unequal treatment, etc.? If so, describe these conditions.

--How did you respond to the situation?

--Who did you speak to/report the incident to? List dates, times, and responses.

--What specifically did you tell them? Describe fully—this will help you keep track of what authority figures knew and when they knew it.

--Did you correspond with your superiors or Human Resources in writing? If so, list names, dates of correspondence, and responses. (Note: If you participate in face-to-face meetings, you should always follow-up the meetings with a quick email in order to create an undeniable record of what transpired.)

--Did you address the individual who is the perpetrator of this incident? What was their response? Did you come to a solution?

--Who are your witnesses? List their names, titles, and the dates of incidences they observed.

--Who else has been harassed, etc. by this person? List their names and any information that is available regarding their harassment, including dates or the approximate time frame of the mistreatment and illegal activities.

--Does the perpetrator have any outstanding complaints against him/her? List specifics, if available.

--How would you like to resolve this issue?

--What would you like to happen? (Your dream scenario)

--What is the minimum that you would find as an acceptable solution to resolve the problem? For instance, you may only want an apology from the perpetrator or you may want an apology, restitution of your salary, and the perpetrator to be placed in training that is appropriate for the offense they committed (e.g., diversity training).

You will also be asked to answer/refute any allegations your employer mentioned to the investigator. So, there may be a whole host of questions that can't be predicted because the questions will depend on how your employer handles the situation. If your employer wants to hit you hard and wants to discredit you (typical), you may have numerous allegations to respond to that you've never heard of before.

If you have to respond to written employer allegations that were made to an investigator, be sure to READ EVERYTHING CAREFULLY!! You don't want to let any allegation slip through the cracks without having your response/the truth on record with the investigator.

PLEASE NOTE: If you file an internal complaint, your HR department may ask similar questions to those listed here. However, if there is the desire for a cover-up, you shouldn't expect to be asked many questions. You might be subjected to more and new allegations. So, just be mentally prepared for anything!

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Readers Have Their Own "Sam" or "Sista" Palins!

While I’m still recovering from my back, neck, and ankle issues, I’ve decided to share some feedback from readers regarding the Sarah Palin type personalities they work with. Not surprisingly, some people have a “Sam” and not a “Sarah” to contend with:

Anonymous #1 wrote: I DID actually work with one, but it was a man...and while I could continue, it is safe to say that I fought back with the weapons that the world sometimes uses against me.

Anonymous #2 wrote: Yes!! I work with a male Sarah Palin. He's not incompetent, but not as awesome as they make him out to be. Additionally, myself and a Sr. level person have about 4-5 yrs more experience --yet this Palin is being elevated beyond belief and taking lead roles, even in areas he has basic knowledge instead of the level needed to lead the role!! I try not to take it personally, but my office is geared towards young white males and they (and the mgmt) pretty much ignore us now and play each other up. The chest and self posturing would have to be seen to be believed...believe me--the resume is firing up, and I'm preparing my exit. Signed, competent, knowledgeable, assertive black female ignored from day 1.

Still, some people were dealing with a Sista “Sarah”…

DiosaNegra1967 wrote: I've worked with them several times in my career...and, in fact, this latest incident has caused me to re-think my career path entirely! here's something that might make your head spin, though...imagine, if you will, a sarah palin...only black. i've experienced THAT too...and I'M black....

Finally, Isista wrote about “Sarahs” of all kinds: Loved the article! I totally agree with this article as well as the previous one. There are tons of "Sarah" -like individuals out there, but they tend to come in all shades and colors and are not gender specific, as I have met many. In terms of Sarah Palin, I do not see what the "hype" is all about and find it quite hilarious as how people have hyped her up so well that even she believes it (the hype) too. So funny!

Continue to share your thoughts about your personal or the political Sarah Palin!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

No Mavericks!

Checking my emails, came across this link from the Obama campaign regarding their new online ad against McCain/Palin. Wanted to share it before I got off the computer. Here's the link to cut and paste or you can click the title of this post to link to the ad site:


Out of Commission

No posts today! I'm having back spasms, strained a muscle in my neck and shoulder, and twisted my ankle all within 24 hours. I only came online to give an update. I'll try to have a new post tomorrow. Check back. Thanks for your patience and understanding!

Monday, September 08, 2008

Tips for Dealing With Problem Coworkers and Managers

Following my last few posts on unqualified White workers in the workplace (inspired by the nomination of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin for Vice President), here are tips for dealing with problem coworkers or managers of any type:

• DOCUMENT EVERYTHING! There isn’t any incident to small to document, when you know you are dealing with a problem employee and manager. If you have a verbal dispute with someone or if you are subjected to verbal threats, document those events. Documentation could mean anything from (1) writing down everything that was said (with date, time, where it took place, witnesses, etc.); (2) sending an email to the person asking them to confirm or clarify what they said or expressing your rational opposition to what they said to you; (3) reporting the person to a supervisor, manager, executive; or (4) lodging a written complaint with Human Resources. The point is, get every incident in writing;

• Report what’s going on! Don’t suffer in silence. Federal law shows an understanding that employees may be afraid of retaliation, but there is also an expectation that employees complain. If you are afraid of going to your supervisor, you can speak to someone else with authority at your company. That person is legally bound to report what your concerns are, if you feel you are being harassed, etc. Even if you feel you will be ignored or if you are being ignored, don’t stop reporting what is going on because this is the best way to prove what you are being subjected to at work;

• File everything away in chronological order. This will save you a world of trouble, when you need to organize the information and/or present it to an attorney or outside investigator in a way that makes sense and gives the exact manner in which events took place;

• Keep a list of witnesses! Always think about proving your versions of events. Write down the name(s) of anyone who witnessed mistreatment and abuses at work;

• Keep all emails, instructions, memos, etc. from the individual causing you problems at work. This can help show that you followed instructions, that you were being subjected to a hostile environment, and can help you show that someone is lying about their current version of events or suddenly faulty power of recall;

• Read the employee handbook! You can’t fight any workplace battle without knowing your rights. By understanding the policies and procedures, as well as the anti-discrimination, harassment, and retaliation information, you are putting yourself in a position of strength. Use the handbook to expose the coworker or manager as violating company policy and, potentially, Federal statutes. Reading the employee manual could arm you with quotes to use against the coworker, manager or company, as a whole because the manual will dictate how the company has defined they will respond to or address certain issues. If the company isn’t following its own guidelines, you can call them out on it and you can point that out to an attorney or outside investigator;

• Be professional and courteous! Always remember that you are in the workplace and conduct yourself as such. Remember, dirty water seeks its own level, so don’t sink to the level of a racist, an ignoramus or other workplace cretins. You will be much better off if any claims that you are unprofessional, rude, mean, etc. can’t be supported by your own written correspondence or conversations that were overheard by other staff;

• Save offensive voicemail messages! Use a recorder to save the message. Have trusted coworkers listen to the message, so they can confirm what was said. Also, save voicemails containing instructions, so you can prove how you were told to complete an assignment; and

• Always blind copy yourself when you send a sensitive email or memorandum! By doing so, you have a record of the list of recipients, and the date and time the correspondence was disseminated. You will also have proof of the exact content of your email in case someone adds text into your document that you did not include in your original message. I’ve seen this done!

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Friday, September 05, 2008

How "Sarah Palin" Made My Life At Work a Living Hell!

Yesterday’s post talked about women in the workplace, who are similar to GOP Vice Presidential nominee, Sarah Palin. My expressed beef with her is how this woman was pulled out of nowhere and has had her qualifications for the number two job in the country hyped up as if no one can see that her resume is being exaggerated. Having worked with women like Sarah Palin, I wanted to talk about two of them, and how they fundamentally changed the lives of African-Americans at my workplace.

Sarah Palin #1: This “Sarah” was sold to everyone as the next big thing. I remember my supervisor saying, “Boy, she’s really with it!” She said this as she was snapping her fingers. Even before she started, we heard all these great things about her. Yet, from day one until about the next 3 months, all this woman had to do was show up for work. Literally! You see, this woman was supposed to be so damned good at her job that my employers hired her during a dry spell in our government contracts. This meant that they hired her knowing they had nothing for her to do. But, they wanted her really badly and were afraid someone else would snatch her up.

Long story short, I watched this woman plan her wedding—with permission—for almost 3 months straight. She was paid about $25-$28 per hour to sit at her desk and browse through wedding magazines, work on her wedding to do list, etc.

And, when she finally got her first assignment as a Senior Account Executive, it turned out the chick didn’t know what the hell she was doing. In fact, she’d never performed the work she was hired to do and it turned out that she was not a quick study. I remember a coworker (White) asking me, “Who did she f*ck to get this job.” Another coworker (White) asked me, “Is it just me or is she stupid?”

These types of comments became so pervasive that my supervisor said to me, “You know, people think she’s dumb, but she’s really not. She’s got it together.” But, I’ll tell you…if you have to say it, it just ain’t so!

This woman proceeded to mismanage every project she worked on and to blame me and anyone she worked with for the problems. She was the most unaccountable person I’ve ever worked with. Everything she touched required a senior manager to come in and clean up. She had problems working with several Black women, including myself. We were all suddenly being told that we were:

• “not nice”
• “moody”
• “snippy”
• “rude”
• “mean”

You see, all “Sarah” had to do was make these complaints to our managers and her remarks were taken as gospel. Because “Sarah” was the next great thing. So, we ended up with comments that originated from “Sarah” and only “Sarah” ending up in our yearly performance evaluations. We’d get comments that we needed to make improvement in some “delineated areas of concern” that came out of “Sarah’s” imagination.

This was despite the fact that “Sarah” was initially denied a promotion because some managers thought SHE had communication issues and project management issues. None of that impacted anyone’s decision to believe or disbelieve what she said. Knowing that “Sarah” had communication issues didn’t seem to raise red flags about any of the Black women “Sarah” complained about.

In fact, my former employer, to this day, is using “Sarah” as a weapon against me in their written responses to an outside investigatory agency! Ain’t that some s*it!

Sarah Palin #2: There was another White woman, I’ve previously blogged about, who started as a Senior Conference Manager. Several quick promotions later, she ended as the director of a department with anywhere from 15-20 staff at any given time. She was 26 years old and had never managed a large group of people, including senior managers with many more years of experience than she had.

Long story short, she ran that department into the ground with straight up mismanagement. She couldn’t stop siding with her friends, showed overt favoritism, and was just winging it with her day-to-day responsibilities.

In the end, when a race-based incident came up, all hell broke loose because this unqualified “Sarah” had no clue about the Federal laws concerning anti-discrimination, harassment and retaliation policies. She had no clue how to tell her friend, who was causing the problems, that she was wrong. And, “Sarah” decided to escalate the racial problems in order to defend her friend from any sort of reprimand, such as suspension, termination, training, or even making an apology to rectify the situation. “Sarah” began to make false accusations against the Black worker, began to get false statements from BLACK staff against this worker, and began to isolate the complaining Black worker from other staff. To defend her friend, “Sarah” was ready to break the law. And, she did!

As a result of this “Sarah” our employer was found guilty of retaliation by the Office of Human Rights in our state.

“Sarah” resigned before our employer was found guilty. But, after the complaining Black worker was forced out of her job (constructive termination), “Sarah” was rehired!! I guess that made all right in the world, for my former employer!

Have you worked with a Sarah Palin type? Tell us about it!

Monday’s post will provide strategies you can use to defend yourself and tips for documenting a person like this.

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Thursday, September 04, 2008

Have You Worked With a Sarah Palin?

After listening to White people attacking Sen. Obama for being unqualified to run for President, it isn’t shocking to see that White people have gone ahead and nominated a woman for Vice President, who is completely unqualified for the position. The nomination of Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin immediately reminded that there isn’t an unqualified White woman around who can’t be sold by other Whites as being the next best thing! Smart as a whip! The best person for the job! A great catch! Like most things, you can’t believe the hype.

Last night, at the Republican National Convention, Sarah Palin was praised for getting more votes running for mayor of Wasilla, Alaska than Joe Biden got running for President in the Democratic primaries.

Here are the facts: Governor Palin got 616 votes in the 1996 mayor's election, and got 909 in her 1999 re-election race, for a total of 1,525. Joe Biden dropped out of the race after the Iowa caucuses, but he still got 76,165 votes in 23 states and the District of Columbia where he was on the ballot during the 2008 presidential primaries.

Like I said, you can’t believe the hype. But, hype they will. In fact, she even hyped herself. She literally swore that being mayor of a town of 9,000 folks was more important and weighty than Sen. Obama being a Senator and serving on the Foreign Relations Committee. She even marginalized his work with Republicans such as Dick Lugar and Tom Coburn. But, that’s what Sarah Palins do, isn’t it?

I’m sure you’ve worked with one. I know I have. Here’s what I know about women I’ve worked with like Sarah Palin:

• Sarah Palins think they know everything.

• Sarah Palins think they’ve earned what they’ve been given and never see the hand-outs being doled out to them from management.

• Sarah Palins know how to get in good with the White people—I mean the right people—and they know how to milk those relationships for everything they’re worth.

• Sarah Palins know how to manipulate those around them and have no problems playing the damsel in distress in order to get their way or to turn people against other staff. Sarah Palins will cry in a heartbeat for sympathy and revenge!

• Sarah Palins will bully others and then preemptively accuse their victims of being mean, rude, disrespectful or unprofessional to them. They'll go directly to a director or manager and leave out every nasty thing they've said and done, while making all sorts of accusations against their target.

• Sarah Palins will demand apologies, while not saying sorry for a single offensive or issue they’ve caused.

• Sarah Palins always seem to move up rather quickly in the company because young, White, “talented,” and so-called attractive women like Sarah Palin often become a favorite of male and female members of management.

• Sarah Palins aren’t accountable for anything because Sarah Palin’s always have a “legitimate” excuse (read: cop out) for any problems they encounter in the workplace.

Missed a deadline? The Sarah Palin you work with will say someone else caused the problem, even though she was in charge and is responsible for project management.

Document sent out with typos in it? The Sarah Palin you work with will bomb you out and say you are solely responsible for quality control, even though she is project lead and despite the fact that she proofed the document before it was sent out.

Didn’t respond to a client email question? The Sarah Palin you work with will claim that you should have responded to the client and/or will blame you for not reminding her that she didn’t respond to the email, since you were cc’ed on the email. Sarah Palin will blame you, even though you don’t have that level of authority to respond on your own and she will blame you, even though she is an adult. It doesn't matter that the email was addressed to her, Sarah Palin will say it's your fault!

Now, of course, every White women isn’t Sarah Palin anymore than every Black woman should be stereotyped a certain way. But, I can tell you 100% that I’ve worked with more than my fair share of women like her. The next big thing. The great White hype.

Unqualified people come in all colors, but White unqualified staff and managers seem to thrive at a pretty perplexing level in the workplace. Because of their inexperience and lack of knowledge in their job (a REALLY serious problem if they are in a position of power and are managing other saff), these unqualified staff and managers may be more prone to violating Federal statutes prohibiting discrimination, harassment, and retaliation in the workplace. And, that's a serious problem.

Tomorrow, I’ll tell you a little about my Sarah Palins.

But, what about you? Is there or was there an unqualified White woman in your life, who caused all sorts of problems for you and/or your coworkers? Tell us about your Sarah Palin. Post a comment!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Diddy Blog #16 - "John McCain Is Buggin The F%^k Out'"!

Diddy hit it out the park, when he posted this Youtube video about John McCain picking Alaskan Governor, Sarah Palin, to be his running mate. My favorite line, “They ain’t even got crackheads in Alaska!”

Here’s the link to Diddy’s video blog: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thmueS0ngAs

Diddy was inspired to do a verbal blog and says he will rally America's youth to defeat the McCain ticket on November 4th.

Likewise, Sarah Palin’s nomination has inspired me to write a post, for tomorrow, about unqualified White women being thrust into positions of authority in the workplace, despite red flags and any performance issues that develop.

Check back tomorrow to learn about the Sarah Palin’s I’ve worked with!
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