Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Insensitivity Training

Michelle Malkin has an article on her blog about a Seattle sensitivity training seminar gone bad. Or perhaps, gone according to the blueprint of these sorts of things, not sure. Being self-employed with only family members as workers, I haven't had the surpassing pleasure of attending one of these. I've had to hear about them from my corporate friends.

One friend, who was a whiz-bang computer programmer at a Milwaukee manufacturing plant perhaps fifteen years ago, told me about his experience. He was in the enviable position at the time of being indispensable to his company, but nonetheless was directed to attend the de rigeur psychobabble session. He was also, just as an aside, married to a Japanese woman and had a son who had multiple scerlosis who navigated through life in a wheel chair, and another adopted son who was black.

My friend attended the first session, sat in back, and rather obviously posted a large magazine in front of his face. The presenter/curator/provocateur lived with this up until the first break, when he confronted my friend and warned that, if this behavior continued, not only would he not be given credit for the course, but would miss out on learning many things about tolerance that he ought to know.

My friend replied, "What's there to know? I'm married to a Jap; one of my kids is a cripple; the other's a nigger. I love them all. You got anything you can teach me?"

Rim shot.

He spent the rest of the sessions in the back, reading Sports Illustrated, and unmolested.


Robin said...

That is a brilliant response.

Who was the friend?

Bruce Gee said...

A friend of the Van Loons, before you were born, dude, when life was great!

scott said...

Hope had the pleasure of one of those just 2 weeks ago at the High school. The topic was accepting and understanding who you are based on your skin color. I advised her to not bring up James Watson!

But she did pose the moral dillema to the insightful speaker of which race our children should feel more guilty of, their white-ness or their asian-ness. He clarified it for everyone that the race to embrace is the more colorful one. The only less preferable asiatics are the whiter ones (i.e. japanese-(read:successful)), and as koreans are a bit more colorful than the japanese, they answer is obvious.

I suspect her deliberately stupid question gave everyone who wasn't enamored by the hallowed charlatan a good chuckle. As a cracker, I thought it was funny.

Lutheran Lucciola said...

These stories crack me up. Most anyone my age and younger really don't even care about "race", as most of our friends over here are a bit of everything anyway.

Anonymous said...

These sorts of seminars come up quarterly in the Army (by Congressional mandate, of course) under the title of "Equal Opportunity Awareness". It nearly turns my stomach to see a many-hued room full of soldiers (who otherwise work at ease together in what is probably the least race-conscious organization in our society) forced to dwell on their differences for an hour every three months. Ugh.