"Working Girl" (aka Karen Burns) has a novel approach to sexual harassment: just laugh. In a blog post yesterday on the website of US News & World Report, she writes, "laughter as a weapon comes in five flavors." These include "scornful laughter. As in: "Right. In your dreams."" and "diabolical laughter. As in: 'Great! I've been waiting for you to make a stupid mistake like this.'" According to Burns, "laughter confuses the harasser, reversing the whole dynamic in your favor." But we think laughing at harassment carries a risk β€” that it will confuse harassers so much they won't know what they did wrong.Sometimes sexual harassment comes in the most egregious, "hey, nice boobies" form. In that case, some scornful laughter might shut the harasser down. But often it's more subtle, and is it really a good idea to fight subtlety with subtlety? Take the situation of the inappropriate joke. A joke that makes someone uncomfortable β€” whether it's about sex or women or someone's attractiveness β€” is one of the most common forms of sexual harassment, at least in my experience. It's also one of the most likely to be unconscious. Inappropriate jokesters often don't mean to offend or discomfit or even flirt; they're just trying to be funny. If you laugh at their jokes, will they really be able to tell "diabolical laughter" from plain old amusement? More broadly, how much time should we really be spending on interesting ways to cope with sexual harassment? Burns says, "It's a fact of life. Sexual harassment is never going to go away. You will always need to know how to deal with it." It's probably true that some sexual harassment is inevitable, and that it's good for your mental health to learn how to respond. But ultimately, it's the supervisor's responsibility to "deal with it" (if that's you, you definitely shouldn't be laughing, and you probably shouldn't show this video). And it's everyone's responsibility not to harass in the first place. Harassees can develop creative techniques if they want to, but it's not their responsibility to respond gracefully to harassment, or to put a stop to it themselves. The Best Way to Stop Sexual Harassment [U.S. News & World Report]