Diversity and Inclusion have existed as official policy for 2 or 3 decades in much of the country as of 2018, the year Equity program was implemented at organizations (RacialEquityAlliance.org is the national organization). Equity program is hostile to diversity of speech and likes duct tape across everyone’s mouth. Where implemented, the Equity program vetoes an organization’s mission, policy and activities with an authoritarian mandate from central office. Worse of all: organizations fail to provide responsible oversight. An organization is legitimate only when its mission comes first and Equity program comes second.

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Thanks Kat and guest. In Fall 2020, my employer put duct tape across everyone’s mouth at home - by creating a vague rule without clear boundaries. This wasn’t random. It occurred after I communicated to others from home via postal mail. That is authoritarian. HR in every organization needs to go back to North Korea.

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Thanks for this, Kat. When this controversy broke out, I hadn't remembered who Sonmez was. I had read about the Kaiman case a couple years ago but couldn't remember people's names, so I appreciate the reminder. I find it interesting that you are the only person so far that I've heard reference that whole affair, or even the fact that she claims to be a survivor of sexual assault (a few articles have mentioned the discrimination suit against the Post but didn't go into the details). Even her Wikipedia page reads as if this newest controversy is the only notable aspect of her career.

At the time I read about the Kaiman situation, I remember thinking that her case against him seemed dubious at best, especially given how utterly ridiculous the first allegation was, and that it was far from what would have justified destroying a man's career. This was even after reading both a sympathetic (to the accusers) account and a critical account of the alleged events (Yoffe's). I certainly remember feeling at the time that the whole situation seemed vindictive and cruel, and raised suspicions of women wanting to construct a victim narrative for themselves in order to feel like an "authentic" voice in a relevant movement. So let's just say I find her behavior in this recent debacle - and the fact that she apparently wears her alleged "survivor" status like a badge of honor - revealing.

One of the things I've always found especially dubious in #metoo narratives is when the accuser claims sexual assault only on reflection, despite the fact that they didn't feel that way at the time. I've been reading and hearing a good bit lately about what modern science understands about the human memory, and it's frankly kind of scary. It actually contradicts a lot of what people seem to believe in victim's advocate groups - which is that we have these buried memories of traumatic experiences that are perfectly preserved and can be unearthed in pristine form through therapy. In fact, it seems that our *least* reliable memories may be the ones that we heavily dwell and reflect on, because the more we recall a memory the more we unconsciously embellish it in ways that we may be motivated to remember it. (There's a good chance this is what happened to poor Brian Williams a number of years ago when he recounted that military helicopter story on Letterman in what was alleged to be a fraudulent account of events, despite having described it correctly on multiple occasions before then.) So it's always possible in cases like Sonmez's that she's unconsciously embellishing her recollection. But like I said, her audacious behavior in this "sexist" joke scandal - particularly with how she remorselessly led a witch hunt against a supposed friend - renders such charitable interpretations less likely, in my view.

In fact, it speaks to an idea I've been thinking about for a while now, and you'd be the ideal person to run it by. I'm a lifelong progressive (I refuse to surrender the term to fanatics) and I steadfastly maintain that, "wokeness" issues notwithstanding, the most dangerous threats to our society currently come from the American right. And that those problems are largely driven by what we call "toxic masculinity" - gun-obsessed militia groups, patriarchal religious organizations rife with sex abuse, misogynistic politicians preying on male insecurity, etc. The characteristic behaviors - intimidation through chest-thumping threats and/or acts of violent aggression, laced with apocalyptic religious imagery and fantastical conspiracy theories to justify abusive incivility - are all over the Republican political landscape these days.

You can probably see where I'm going with this. More and more I'm starting to feel that the left is in the grip of what could reasonably be called "toxic femininity". It's characterized by a different kind of intimidation - one that relies on hysterical melodrama and exploits people's sympathies and guilt complexes to manipulate their behavior. It revels in individual weakness to obtain power through group dynamics, turning well-intentioned people who just want to do the right thing into abusively intolerant mean-girl drones obsessed with protecting their social status through ostracization of their enemies. I think people like Sonmez exemplify this worrisome trend.

Thoughts? :-)

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