The court ruled 7-0 that bosses can fire employees they see as an “irresistible attraction,” even if the employees have not engaged in flirtatious behavior or otherwise done anything wrong. Such firings may be unfair, but they are not unlawful discrimination under the Iowa Civil Rights Act because they are motivated by feelings and emotions, not gender, Justice Edward Mansfield wrote.”  {ABCNews.com)

This week in Iowa, a court ruled that managers and owners could, “fire workers for irresistible temptation.”  The scenerio goes a little like this: Male boss has all female workforce. Boss decides it is appropriate to send personal text messages to his female employees, to which employee “x” responds. Though she never engages in, “flirtatious behavior,” the wife of the male boss finds out and immediately asks her husband to fire the employee. Together, the wife and husband consult with their pastor and the pastor advises the same: the female employee must be terminated. If that doesn’t seem genderist at all, consider that the boss had made comments, (on record) to employee “x” saying that “if his pants were bulging that was a sign her clothes were too revealing.” Sadly, all this isn’t the worst part.

It’s happened before in New Jersey and has been upheld in the Federal Court. If your choice of dress or your appearance could potentially hurt the business or the business owner’s relationship with his family, (yes, his FAMILY) you could be fired with cause, legally. The specific law states that if you cause, “Jealousy or tension within a business owner’s family,” you could be terminated.

The best response I’ve found is from Lighthouse Law Firm  in Canada and mirrors my same disgust with the violently sexist propaganda of the all-male Supreme Court of Iowa.

Throughout this decision is the aura of religious family values, and religious interference with the rights of women.  The court seems to have subconsciously  accepted generic christian doctrine that women are a threat to men, and women “control” the behaviour of men, and men must be protected from women, even their mere presence.  The court never commented on the interference of a Pastor (employer’s priest) into the business, contractual, legal, affairs of the employee woman. The court completely ignored the clear reality that most religions codify women for the benefit of men.  There is no mention of the employee woman’s religious beliefs or perspective showing that it did not matter.”

 

 I work for a male boss I deeply respect. Should he get married and his wife feel I’m a threat, I could quite literally, (without any cause,) be terminated. Why should ANY gender live in fear of losing their job over complete nonsense?  Possibly the worst part is that this isn’t just a work-environment issue. This mentality could spread across to other scenarios  (sexual assault, healthcare, etc.) What if a potential landlord didn’t want to rent to me, because I was going to live upstairs and I could be a, “temptation?” Where is the responsibility for the leader of a business to respect themselves and their already established relationships enough to not succumb to temptation? Do we really need the courts to side with people who can’t keep their sexual urges to themselves? Scary precedent, not just for H.R., but for life.