Nancy Silberkleit, the co-CEO of Archie Comics, has been accused in a law suit filed by her male employees of workplace gender discrimination and harassment because she referred to them as “Penis” instead calling them by their names. The lawyers representing Archie president Mike Pellerito, editor-in-chief Victor Gorelick, and others allege that Silberkleit used the term many times in a degrading manner, as, for example, when she began yelling “Penis! Penis! Penis!” during a business meeting.
This woman needs to work with Bill Maher.
They deserve each other.
For Silberkleit’s part, the attorneys for her defense reject the five employees’ claim that she used her “gender as a weapon,” saying that “Plaintiffs fail to allege that any such comments were directed at any of the plaintiffs in particular, or they could cause extreme emotional distress even if they had been.”
Their argument is essentially that it’s impossible to sexually harass white males in this manner, because they are not a protected class.
I’m going out on a limb here, as someone who trains companies regarding the pitfalls of sexual harassment, and will opine that habitually calling male employees “Penis” creates a hostile work environment for the men in the office, whether they are the targets of the term or not. I could be wrong.
No, actually, I couldn’t be. Moreover, if the allegations are accurate, Silberkleit’s conduct isn’t just harassment and discrimination, it is also unprofessional, disrespectful, demeaning and uncivil. Veronica would never get away with treating Archie and Jughead this way.
Facts: NY Daily News
Graphic: Straight Dope