Spacefem (spacefem) wrote,


so our department managers got sent to inclusive workforce training last week... of the horrible things to go to, this has to top the list. the report back was this: the class talked about cultural differences and how CRAZY they made things, the african-american instructor talked about how she'd faced prejudice, and then they looked at company statistics about how many women were promoted to manager positions this year.

fabulous. so now I know that if I'm ever promoted, i'll get to be a tally on a spreadsheet at corporate.

I don't think any of them got much out of it, and since I've been to stuff like this before, I don't think I would have gotten anything out of it either. They see it as painful bullshit, and it probably is. the sad thing I see here is that society does have serious issues involved in how we see race/gender, and these issues need to be addressed, and people need to be reached. Giving them a false sense of being reached through their corporate training programs almost seems to give a counterproductive sense of non-awareness.

So I talked with my personal expert on minority relations: the husband. he's worked in offices. he's worked as a nightclub bouncer. he's worked a lot of places in between. And I do love talking about this with the husband on COLUMBUS DAY... just when I hope America is getting past some of its race issues, that precious time of year comes around again for us to celebrate the day we started obliterating indigenous cultures. america! fuck yeah!

anyway the man has plenty of interesting stories about people being assholes because he's not white... not times when he felt like someone might be biased against him, or stories about someone letting a racial slur slip out before they realized it to correct themselves. I've never heard him talk about those sorts of things because he's got much better, and more tragic, stories. the weird thing? none of them are set in a cushy office. it's a corporate, step in line, whitewashed world that's got nothing to do with how people feel any more. you can be a closet racist for years and think it's perfectly okay to leave the cubicle behind and be your asshole self again, because that world is not real life. the outside, where we have to really deal with differences, is where it comes out and has a major effect. the office is sealed off by class, which takes care of a lot of things... for us to think we can learn anything about race and gender without touching class is pretty naive, that's what i've informally decided. you can bet there won't be a "classism and you" training class any time soon.

I think race is complicated. I don't think the answers are there. And maybe that's my problem with the 1-day "inclusive workforce" seminar... it supplies corporate answers for an issue where most people don't know the questions.

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