Thursday, August 06, 2009

Diversity Training

We had an hour's worth of mandatory diversity training at my work yesterday, which was just enough time to say, "Although everyone in this room is white, you may encounter some non-white people at some time in your career. If that happens, be nice to them."

It was an exercise in PC agony. At one point the instructor asked if anyone could think of a stereotype applied to people of another culture, and the room was silent. How to repeat a racial slur without admitting you actually know a racial slur? A dilemma for sure. One woman finally started mumbling about wives who answer questions for their husbands and then trailed off, unwilling to say which wives and husbands.

So because I'm Evie and I Know Things, I finally piped up.

"Jews are cheap and Mexicans are lazy."
The guy behind me said, "Mexicans aren't lazy!"
"I know that. That's why it's a stereotype, not an actual fact!"

(He must know a Mexican. *sigh*)

Considering that my workplace is a hotbed of racial jokes, ethnic stereotypes, queer bashing and sexism, I'm going to go out on a limb and say an hour of diversity training won't be enough for a lot of folks. But it did fulfill our government-mandated quota for another year. And isn't that what really matters?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It's too bad your only comments on this are phishers. This cracked me up. That's definitely something I would say too. :)