This lawsuit against Archie Comics CEO Nancy Silberkleit is a doozy. In it, a number of male employees, including company president Mike Pellerito and editor-in-chief Victor Gorelick, alleges that Silberkleit repeatedly referred to men in the office as penises, among other charges.
As expected, Silberkleit has countered these claims with the standard "I'm outraged" boilerplate, claiming that the charges are "cruel, mean, and inaccurate." However, she also says that the allegations don't "rise to the level of gender discrimination," most likely because white men aren't in a "protected class."
By all means, Ms. Silberkleit, defend yourself when someone sues you for gender discrimination. But for God's sake, this is not the way to cast doubt on the charges' veracity. Because gender discrimination actually can happen to white men, even if they are not part of a legally protected class, and even if they are part of a group that has historically been on the opposite end of such treatment. Oh, and referring to someone by his or her sexual organ definitely sounds like sexual harassment.
Hopefully, Silberkleit and her lawyer have cited more convincing evidence/reasoning that the charges against her are bogus, because this transparent attempt at deflection just invites the suspicion that the claims are indeed true.
Update: several commenters have pointed out that men and women are both under the gender protected class, which makes Silberkleit's argument even more misguided.
Image via AP.