6
   

White Women vs Free Speech: And Google is going to get sued.

 
 
izzythepush
 
  2  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 09:41 am
@emmett grogan,
emmett grogan wrote:

In case Izzy doesn't want to handle small beans:


I never said Max had small beans, but I take your point and it would explain a lot. I have Max on ignore, I rarely peek because he just repeats the same 'poor poor me' nonsense over and over again. I don't have to read his stuff to respond.

Btw, I'm just one person with zero influence but I can still get Max to piss his pants on command.
0 Replies
 
emmett grogan
 
  4  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 09:41 am
@maxdancona,
Quote:
it seemed like you were at least a little willing to step out of your ideological bubble.


Aren't backhanded complements a form of the ad hominem?

The rest of it seems off topic and mostly about how you are disappointed when people mostly mostly disagree with you.

Take a deep breath and your person grief out of your argument.
0 Replies
 
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 09:49 am
@emmett grogan,
Quote:
Morals aside because they are only germane personally, Google has the legal right to fire the engineer because Google set their standards for employment in the contract between both parties and the engineer breached his contract with his post on a Google forum. Break your contract here with intemperate speech at A2K and I bet arguing "free speech" will get you nowhere.

Ironically you do argue his firing was the result of a hostile workplace when the posting the engineer made was a hostile act.


I am not a lawyer. I am assuming that you are not either (correct me if I am wrong). It is a little silly for two non-lawyers to debate what are Google's legal rights are. I have read the legal analysis. Some lawyers say it is an "uphill climb" for this fired engineers. Other analysis suggest that California law protecting political activity might lead a successful case. This will play out in court, and I am happy to let the lawyers comment.

But I comment on the moral side (or what I think the law should be). Imagine that instead of a conservative in a liberal company this was a liberal in a conservative company. Let's say that a gun owner is feeling threatened by a fellow employees comments in a company form concerning the danger of gun ownership.

Are you just supporting this principle when the company fires someone for their conservative ideology. Or would you support a company for firing someone for expressing a liberal opinion?

There is a basic matter of fairness here. If you are arguing that employees can be fired for expressing unpopular opinions, then at least you are being fair. If you are arguing that conservatives can be fired for expressing unpopular opinions... don't you see why this is a problem?

Are you arguing that a company is allowed to fire any employee for expressing a political view that is troubling to other employees? This gives employers a lot of power over their employees... I am not comfortable with this, are you?
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 09:58 am
@maxdancona,
For the record I am a liberal (in the US sense) in almost every issue. I support equal pay, same sex marriage, reproductive rights, universal health care, immigrant rights. What I am against is the ideological bubble; the need to censor, silence and attack anyone who disagrees with you.

You can be a fact-based liberal. This means listening to people when they disagree with you and accepting that issues are complex, and that sometimes people outside your bubble have reasonable points.

This isn't about liberal and conservative. It is about ideologies where disagreement is unacceptable and people divergent views need to be stamped out, silenced and pushed out of public life.

That is what we are seeing on this thread, and from the left in general. I support the policies of the left (for the most part). I abhor the ideology of derision and censorship.
emmett grogan
 
  4  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 10:10 am
@maxdancona,
Quote:
But I comment on the moral side (or what I think the law should be).


You aren't a lawyer but you are a moral authority? And then you and speculate on law after you said you weren't a lawyer. Didn't you define this whole discussion around the legal and moral right of Google to fire this guy?????

Trying to re-frame your argument as an equivalent to opinions on gun control just doesn't work. Discussing gun control does not create hostile environments, while screaming and yelling while being strapped would. I am not born armed, but I am born male, female, gay, straight, black, white etc. If I own the Google and I say you can not come to work strapped and fire you for doing so, where am I failing morally or legally? Would you fire someone for being black or gay or Republican?

I am not a lawyer but I did do firing and hiring and I have fired people for intemperate speech at work on the floor and in the break-room. If I hear someones crap on the streets or in a bar - I shake my head. Say it to my employees at in public free speech and let it get back to me - I'll council you once. I will write you up twice. Then you're canned and my being a lawyer or not you are legally and more than fairly and morally fired.

I know you aren't a lawyer, but why aren't verbal threats of violence in your opinion free speech?
maxdancona
 
  0  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 10:22 am
@emmett grogan,
The moral principle I was proposing is that employers should be fair (i.e. not favor one ideological position over another).

You don't accept my "gun owner" example. I thought it was pretty good, but OK. The point isn't about gun owners... it was whether you would be fair were the story flipped and it was someone who shared your belief who was getting fired for expressing it.

The question is whether you are arguing some principle that can be applied fairly, or you only arguing from the standpoint of your own ideological bubble. If the principle is that people with a liberal ideology should be protected, but that people with conservative opinions can be fired for expressing the... I see this a problematic.

Can you come up with an example where someone who shares your liberal ideology is fired from her work for expressing her opinion? Would your position be consistent in that case that an employee would have the right (legally or morally) to fire her.


0 Replies
 
emmett grogan
 
  4  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 10:25 am
@maxdancona,
You think your right to blurt is my obligation to listen to your blurt. You are confused. It is un-Constitutional to legislate a right that infringes on another right. It wasn't his adolescent whine that got him fired, it was breaking the terms of his employment that got him fired.

He freely made his speech albeit on the wrong forum and now as he has the right to make free speech he has the obligation to accept Constitutional consequences. Next time he should write a memo up chain or a letter to the editors at his newspapers.

I'm pretty done with this and I don't intend watch you change the boundaries around as the issue is pretty darn static. There's no new law here, according to my lawyers - my sister, brother and sister in law.

I'll bet $100 to your $20 he gets nowhere fast in the courts - California or not.
maxdancona
 
  0  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 10:29 am
@emmett grogan,
I would take the bet; if there were an escrow account I trusted, I would make this bet up to $1000 (to your $5000). I need a new car.

You didn't answer the question about fairness. I wish you would tell me if you would feel the same if the ideologies were switched, and the person getting fired for expressing an opinion were someone you agreed with.
centrox
 
  4  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 11:05 am
Morality and politics aside, if I were the CEO of the company where that guy worked, I would want him out, because he had run his mouth (bad judgement) and it had leaked out (reputational damage which he could have foreseen, again, bad judgement). I would sit down with HR and work out a legal way of booting his ass out. I would maybe dress it up with some bullshit. He sounds like some white entitled nerdy male who is butthurt that he can't get a date. Are there any pictures out there? Why do I get the feeling he has a neckbeard?


emmett grogan
 
  4  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 11:17 am
@maxdancona,
I can afford $100. Maybe you can't afford the $20. Make a date for this be concluded by. Anyone who knows me knows that one thing about me is: Emmett keeps his bets. Take the bet or don't.

Fairness is an extremely subjective thing. That's why people make contracts spelling out situations and consequences. If it was so unfair why did he sign the agreement to begin with? At any rate he was fired fairly under the terms he accepted as fair before the contract. As William Munny said just before he shot Little Bill laying on the floor at Greely's Saloon (billiards upstairs} , "fair ain't got nuthin' to with it."

I wouldn't have necessarily fired the guy because I try not to fire people, I try to tweak the situation so an employee can't make a mistake. Whether I like a person or not, if he/she creates hostility in the workplace and I can't put them into a secluded work station or if that person persists, they are fired. Fairly and legally.

Hate speech freely made is not protected speech. And this is about whether Google acted legally and fairly. By all you've posted and what I've read elsewhere: the answer is yes, they did.
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 12:01 pm
@emmett grogan,
Quote:
Hate speech freely made is not protected speech


This is factually and legally incorrect.
maxdancona
 
  0  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 12:06 pm
@centrox,
Really Centrox?

Once you start referring to women who complain about workplace rules as "entitled nerdy females who are butthurt and can't get a date", you have kind of lost the argument. CEOs with these attitudes who then scheme for "legal ways" to fire these women are crossing a line; it certainly isn't ethical and in my opinion it should be illegal. I believe in labor laws that offer some amount of protection for employees.

Sexist stereotypes are not a valid way to make a reasoned argument.




0 Replies
 
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 12:09 pm
@emmett grogan,
I don't know you, so I would need an escrow I trust.

And let's be clear... my prediction is that Google settles this out of court for an undisclosed amount (which will be over a million dollars and maybe two). They will pay this guy off to make the lawsuit go away.

Do I win the bet if this happens?
emmett grogan
 
  3  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 04:47 pm
@maxdancona,
Quote:
This is factually and legally incorrect.


That is your personal and factually incorrect opinion. Consult with your attorney.

I thought you weren't a lawyer, and yet you just proffered a legal opinion!!!
emmett grogan
 
  4  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 04:49 pm
@maxdancona,
What kind of twit would need an escrow account on $20? Besides you, that is. Don't take the bet then.

Escrow. <snicker>
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 05:17 pm
@emmett grogan,
I wish you would make an argument (with points, reasoning and maybe some facts to support the assertion you are making). Then we can have a reasonable discussion. I don't know if you want a reasonable discussion with someone who disagrees with you, but I do (and I hold out hope).

There are plenty of reasons that Hate Speech is Protected Speech. I didn't make this up myself, this is the widely understood in the American legal community, explained by the ACLU and has been supported by Supreme Court Cases.

Here are the facts that support my opinion (in hopes of a reasonable discussion rather than a back and forth of personal insults)

- Several Supreme Court cases have made it very clear that Hateful and Offensive Speech is covered under the First Amendment. These include Brandenburg V. Ohio, National Socialist Party V. Skokie, Snyder V. Phelps. In all of these cases the Court ruled that speech deemed "hateful" and "offensive" by the majority of Americans is protected by the First Amendment.

- Hate Speech is subjective. If you allow the government to suppress "hate speech", then the government has an avenue to suppress any speech. All the government has to do is pass a law that an opinion is "hateful" and viola, the expression of an idea is banned. Of course, the First Amendment was written for exactly this reason... the government can not suppress speech.

- Of course, in private settings... such as your home, or private clubs or internet sites there is no protected speech. The First Amendment doesn't apply in these settings (including Able2Know), it is up to the owners. Employers sit somewhere in between. There are laws on the books that protect freedom of expression of employees... these vary from state to state.


- Civil Rights Lawyers, including lawyers who have won civil rights cases and who I respect, also support the idea that hate speech is protected speech.

Quote:

The ACLU has often been at the center of controversy for defending the free speech rights of groups that spew hate, such as the Ku Klux Klan and the Nazis. But if only popular ideas were protected, we wouldn't need a First Amendment. History teaches that the first target of government repression is never the last. If we do not come to the defense of the free speech rights of the most unpopular among us, even if their views are antithetical to the very freedom the First Amendment stands for, then no one's liberty will be secure. In that sense, all First Amendment rights are "indivisible."

Censoring so-called hate speech also runs counter to the long-term interests of the most frequent victims of hate: racial, ethnic, religious and sexual minorities. We should not give the government the power to decide which opinions are hateful, for history has taught us that government is more apt to use this power to prosecute minorities than to protect them. As one federal judge has put it, tolerating hateful speech is "the best protection we have against any Nazi-type regime in this country."

https://www.aclu.org/other/freedom-expression-aclu-position-paper


maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 05:18 pm
@emmett grogan,
You are really adding up the personal attacks; "twit", "idiot", "asshole"... really your effort here is quite impressive. But that is my main point, ideological echo chambers live on attacking anyone with differing opinions.

I don't see that you have attempted any reasoned arguments yet.
engineer
 
  5  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 07:43 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

This guy was fired for expressing an opinion about Google policy.

No, he has fired for creating a hostile work environment and violating Google's code of conduct.

maxdancona wrote:
There are some things that clearly would be grounds for dismissal; if he said that women shouldn't be engineers, it would be hard to protect him. He didn't say anything close to that.

Yes he did. He claimed that women are biologically less suited to be programmers than men and that women are prone to feeling higher stress than men making them less suitable for higher level positions in the company. He graciously concedes that an above average woman could be the equivalent of an average man and made a nice chart to show it.

maxdancona wrote:
He was basically arguing that some Google policies were unfair and counterproductive.

And had he stopped there he would have been fine.
maxdancona wrote:
But this is an argument against policy, not against individuals.

There is no way, ever, that individuals will feel that way. Any woman who works with this guy will assume (with reason) that he does not value her input like he would value a man's. Should this guy be placed in a management or project leadership role, no woman in her right mind could be faulted for believing that her chances of receiving acknowledgement or recognition for her accomplishments would be at risk knowing that this guy believes she is inherently, biologically inferior to the guy one cubicle over.

maxdancona wrote:
You can't have an employer take sides in political opinions. An employer can't decide that one opinion is offensive while ignoring other opinions that offend other employees.

Actually, you can, but in this case the author went far beyond saying the Google should forego quotas and promoting equality and just hire and promote the best talent. He argued that men are inherently superior technologists due to their immutable biology, even going so far as to bring up castratos.

maxdancona wrote:
Finally, there is a certain expectation that people can deal with differences of opinion and still work together without anyone getting fired. I feel passionately about Immigration (as anyone here knows) and I speak Spanish. I have a co-worker, a Trump supporter, who wants to build a wall and who has told me that people should speak English in any official capacity.

Guess what. I not only am able to work with this gentleman, I talk to him at lunch, and I would be very upset were he fired.

But if he were to actively and publicly espouse the opinion that people of Hispanic descent are inherently inferior and should not hold positions of responsibility at your employment, he would cross a line and I would hope that your management would take action of some sort to protect your fellow employees.
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 10 Aug, 2017 09:21 pm
@engineer,
Thank you engineer, for a well reasoned post.

1. First of all, I am not in lockstep agreement with this guy's point of view (although I will go as far to say that some of his arguments have more merit than people are willing to admit). My main argument is that he should not have been fired, and that the fervent attempts being made by the left to stifle any discussion on these issues are counter-productive.

2. Are you arguing that they should be locked out of employment? I strongly disagree with you if you are going to tell people with the wrong opinions that they can never be engineers. I think we agree that the number of people with ideas that are considered "offensive" is pretty high.

If you are arguing that they can be engineers, but that they have to stifle their opinions on the job... is this better for the a work environment, or worse? I think I prefer to work in an environment where people can speak their mind and work out differences of opinion.

3. You might want to think twice before you state what "any woman" would do. I would feel uncomfortable stating what a "woman in her right mind" might or might not think (and people here say I am a misogynist). The liberal ideological echo chamber has always had trouble explaining why there are so many women who choose to be conservatives.

You are taking your argument too far when you say "There is no way, ever, that individuals will feel that way". This is demonstrably wrong; female engineers have gone on record to say otherwise (including one on NPR yesterday morning).

4. I accept that many women will feel uncomfortable by this rhetoric. And, I accept that this is a weakness in my argument. However, I feel that the cost of enforcing an ideological viewpoint by an employer is too high.

5. I think you are overstating the position that this man took in his essay. Yes, he said that women "on average" are less suited for engineering.

6. I think that arguments which conflate race and gender are completely bogus. Race and Gender are very different. In the realm of science there is respectable research from mainstream scientific organizations on the role of gender in cognitive processes. This is considered a legitimate field of study by the scientific community.

In the realm of history there absolutely no comparison to what African-Americans and Native Americans endured to what White women endured. Race has always been the primary factor in the US.


emmett grogan
 
  2  
Reply Fri 11 Aug, 2017 09:57 am
@maxdancona,
So you don't think anyone has ever been arrested and convicted of hate speech???

You don't think people have been arrested for assault by use of hate speech? Verbal assault is not protected as speech.

You don't think anyones had his physical assault charge sentence increased because using hate speech during the attack?????

On the rest of it: sez you. I think your mother dresses you funny. Sez me.

You've asked for my opinion and I gave and backed it up, even consulting with THREE attorneys and my own experience hiring and firing employees that were members of the Teamsters.

A woman I fired for creating a hostile environment tried suing me though the EEOC. I won without a lawyer though it took the better part of a year before it got to an administrative court.

I actually know a lot about this stuff and all you have is your emotional connection to the vanishing white male.

I am done. Spin by yourself.
 

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