Saturday, July 13, 2013

Nice minefield you've laid there

This decision from the Iowa Supreme Court pretty much sets up a lovely standard for ignoring the elephant in the workplace.

The Iowa Supreme Court on Friday stood by its ruling that a dentist acted legally when he fired an assistant because he found her too attractive and worried he would try to start an affair.

Coming to the same conclusion as it did in December, the all-male court found that bosses can fire employees they see as threats to their marriages, even if the subordinates have not engaged in flirtatious or other inappropriate behavior. The court said such firings do not count as illegal sex discrimination because they are motivated by feelings, not gender.

So somebody cannot control their "feelings" you must pay with either your job or being sexually harassed.

Sounds fair to women, huh?


StonyPillow said...

Our Born Again stallion Knight swapped out the oldest mare in the stable. Common thing with doctors. Now one of the younger fillies can demonstrate the benefits of good oral hygiene.

Yastreblyansky said...

Could be worse. In Florida he might have shot her for that.

Anonymous said...

Oh, I go, progressive feminist I consider myself, defending this decision--not having read it, BTW...

First, this ruling is not about firing someone for ANY reason that passes the 14th Amendment, which is the de facto default law of the land today. You can do that. If this dentist was actually fighting for the right to fire someone for such a frivolous and sort-of discriminatory reason, then, yes, it's weird. But he could have fired her for any reason he wanted to, including NO REASON AT ALL. Employers have the right to fire people at will. Period. That's how the law reads in this country.

Here's the dangerous dissent: I would not want to work every day with a woman who was trying to seduce me. Would you?

I do not see this as a feminist issue in the least, but they will pick up the ball and run with it. I'm pretty sure they will fail to score, especially with today's SCOTUS.


Montag said...

Yes, "at will" employment is the de facto standard in all so-called "right to work" states. But, the dentist was wrong.

So, at the very least, I hope this woman gets some help with her legal fees so she can make this guy hurt financially for his own lack of self-control.

Yastreblyansky said...

Daddy-O if she had been trying to seduce him he would obviously be justified in firing her. But that's not how it was--he claimed to be unable to stop himself from trying to seduce her.

Mr. 618 said...

I am *NOT* guaranteeing the veracity, but several articles that I've read said the doctor spoke to the woman several times about her "tight, low-cut, revealing" clothing. It would seem to me that if I, as an employer, repeatedly counseled an employee as to her dress in the workplace, I should then be within my rights to discharge her. Again, this is assuming the facts are reported were correct. Yes, an employee had certain rights, but if the boss says "your clothes are too tight, and are making me uncomfortable," the employee should pay attention.

Again, I am NOT claiming the reports are accurate, I'm just saying that if they are, she has less standing than she might have otherwise.

Mr. 618 said...

Oh, and from looking at her pictures, if she was "too sexy," we're in a whole heap of trouble. Looked kinda skanky to me. Exactly the type who would wear too-tight clothes and complain about being counseled for it.