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Harassment doesn't need to be gender-based to be harassment
I am glad to read JM1981's comments and the original blog posting. I am male and was subject to a different kind of harassment a few years ago -- it was so bad that I had to leave the job (my dream job!!). There was an incident of male-on-female sexual harassment in our office. When it became public, upper management then called an all-hands meeting of the 300+ employees to outline policies and procedures (and warnings!) regarding this type of behavior. During this meeting, someone said that harassment should not only cover gender-based offenses, but all other types (race, religion, etc.). That statement prompted one of the female managers to say this: "well, we should feel free to bash Christians, since they deserve it!" There has applause and approval at this statement, and nobody from HR or upper management called her on this bigoted statement. I was shocked and appalled. Since I am a Christian and I did not keep it a secret, I was worried about what would happen. My worst fears were realized -- I was hounded, harassed, ridiculed, and spit upon subsequent to this. I spoke with a close friend in management about my fears and the events, and he said that I just had to get used to it since harassment only applies to men-on-women sexual-based harassment. Subsequently, I received a terrible annual performance evaluation and a warning that I would lose my job next year if I did not improved. That was grossly absurd since for the prior 7 seven years, I received outstanding reviews and annual corporate awards for performance. When I finally quit this otherwise dream job, I gave a 2-hour exit interview to the HR rep, who was obviously expecting a 5-minute wrap-up and discussion of health plans. I don't know what finally happened, but one of the chief perpetrators of the harassment against me was "booted upstairs" -- he was rewarded with an executive management position in which he no longer had direct supervisory responsiblity over anyone. It was definitely his dream job.