Political Harassment

A friend works for a DC-area medical non-profit, and feels political harassment creates a hostile work environment:

I was filing in the hallway while some managers talked about the VP debate.  One complained about Palin’s wink, and said she would not be a good president.  I chimed in saying I only watched the second half but thought the winking was cute and that I like capable women in leadership.  One said "You can’t vote, right?"  I said I was a green card holder.  "Oh good, we wouldn’t want you to vote."  Shortly after, my peers and managers at the weekly work social were told that I am a supporter of Republicans and that they are glad I cannot vote as I would vote for a stupid, uneducated woman because she is cute and winks. 

Once upon a time most any work harassment was fair game – if you didn’t like it you were supposed to find another job.   Then we made rules against harassing people for a few things, like gender, race or religion.  But apparently harassing people at work for their politics is still fair game.  Compared to the current regime, I can better appreciate either the previous anything-goes regime, or an always-nice regime where no one may be harassed at work for any non-work-related issue.  But what is the point allowing some but not other kinds of non-work-related harassment at work?

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