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Solved by verified expert:Discrimination, Harassment and Affirmative Action Reading Brusseau, J. (2012). Business Ethics. New York, NY: 2012 Book Archive Project. Chapter 10: The Tense Office: Discrimination, Victimization, and Affirmative ActionChapter 11: The Aroused Office: Sex and Drugs at Work ASSIGNMENTS: For this PART 1: Please read the case study entitled Google Celebrates Diversity…and Profit that you find in the reading assignment. Based on what you have learned in this unit, answer the following questions: 1. In a nutshell, the commonly cited arguments in favor of affirmative action include the following: It creates fairness and equal opportunity within organizations.It benefits third parties: society as a whole will be more harmonious as discrimination recedes.It reduces tensions in an organization.It benefits organizations by helping them reach their goals.It is compensation for past wrongs. Which of these arguments appear to stand behind affirmative action at Google? Explain. Are any of the other justifications applicable even though they may not be the reason Google seeks diverse talent? 2. In sweeping terms there are two types of arguments in favor of affirmative action. First, it serves a broad social good by integrating society. Second, companies employing affirmative action do better in the marketplace than those that don’t. If you had to choose one of these as a better and more persuasive argument for affirmative action, which would you choose? Why? 3. At some publicly funded universities, scholarships are, in essence, set aside for minorities. Google privately funds scholarships that are, in essence, set aside for minorities. Taxpayers, in other words, fund one affirmative action endeavor and private investors the other. Now, is one endeavor ethically superior to the other? Why or why not? 4. What does the veil of ignorance test for discrimination? Put yourself under the veil of ignorance. Now, do you believe Google’s hiring policies are ethically good or bad? Why? Please write an essay of complete and well composed paragraphs (250 word minimum for the entire essay) Be sure to use in text citation and provide references for your sources. Wikipedia is not a source. For this PART 2: Please read the case study entitled International Affair that you find in the reading assignment. Afterwards read the first, second, fourth and fifth sections of the article entitled “The nature, causes and consequences of bullying at work: The Norwegian experience” by Ståle Einarsen: https://pistes.revues.org/3156. Please discuss this reading material in light of this case study and the reading assignments for this unit. Reference Einarsen, S. (2005). The nature, causes and consequences of bullying at work: The Norwegian experience. Perspectives interdisciplinaires sur le travail et la santé, 7-3, https://pistes.revues.org/3156.
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Discrimination, Harassment and Affirmative Action
Reading
Brusseau, J. (2012). Business Ethics. New York, NY: 2012 Book Archive Project.


Chapter 10: The Tense Office: Discrimination, Victimization, and Affirmative Action
Chapter 11: The Aroused Office: Sex and Drugs at Work
ASSIGNMENTS:
For this PART 1:
Please read the case study entitled Google Celebrates Diversity…and Profit that you find in the
reading assignment.
Based on what you have learned in this unit, answer the following questions:
1. In a nutshell, the commonly cited arguments in favor of affirmative action include the
following:





It creates fairness and equal opportunity within organizations.
It benefits third parties: society as a whole will be more harmonious as discrimination
recedes.
It reduces tensions in an organization.
It benefits organizations by helping them reach their goals.
It is compensation for past wrongs.
Which of these arguments appear to stand behind affirmative action at Google? Explain. Are any
of the other justifications applicable even though they may not be the reason Google seeks
diverse talent?
2. In sweeping terms there are two types of arguments in favor of affirmative action. First, it
serves a broad social good by integrating society. Second, companies employing affirmative
action do better in the marketplace than those that don’t. If you had to choose one of these as a
better and more persuasive argument for affirmative action, which would you choose? Why?
3. At some publicly funded universities, scholarships are, in essence, set aside for minorities.
Google privately funds scholarships that are, in essence, set aside for minorities. Taxpayers, in
other words, fund one affirmative action endeavor and private investors the other. Now, is one
endeavor ethically superior to the other? Why or why not?
4. What does the veil of ignorance test for discrimination? Put yourself under the veil of
ignorance. Now, do you believe Google’s hiring policies are ethically good or bad? Why?
Please write an essay of complete and well composed paragraphs (250 word minimum for the
entire essay) Be sure to use in text citation and provide references for your sources.
Wikipedia is not a source.
For this PART 2:
Please read the case study entitled International Affair that you find in the reading assignment.
Afterwards read the first, second, fourth and fifth sections of the article entitled “The nature,
causes and consequences of bullying at work: The Norwegian experience” by Ståle Einarsen:
https://pistes.revues.org/3156.
Please discuss this reading material in light of this case study and the reading assignments
for this unit.
Reference
Einarsen, S. (2005). The nature, causes and consequences of bullying at work: The Norwegian
experience. Perspectives interdisciplinaires sur le travail et la santé, 7-3,
https://pistes.revues.org/3156.
Chapter 10
The Tense Office: Discrimination, Victimization, and Affirmative
Action
Chapter Overview
Chapter 10 “The Tense Office: Discrimination, Victimization, and Affirmative
Action” examines issues and ethics surrounding discrimination in the workplace.
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Chapter 10 The Tense Office: Discrimination, Victimization, and Affirmative Action
10.1 Racial Discrimination
LEARNING OBJECTIVES
1. Define racial discrimination.
2. Distinguish different ways that racial discrimination occurs in the
workplace.
3. Consider legal aspects of racial discrimination in a business
environment.
4. Discuss ethical aspects of racial discrimination in a business
environment.
The White Running Back
Toby Gerhart is a bruising running back. Coming out of college at six feet and 225
pounds, he was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings football team with their firstround pick in 2010. It was a controversial choice. His playing style is unorthodox: he
runs standing almost straight up and doesn’t do much faking and cutting. Most NFL
runners get low and slip away from tacklers. Gerhart chugs and blows through
things.
That’s not Gerhart’s only distinction. In a league where running backs—almost all of
them—are black, he’s white. On the days leading to the draft, Gerhart feared his
skin color might be expensive. An anonymous quote had been circulating,
suggesting that his position in the draft order could fall, bringing his paycheck
down along with it: “One longtime NFL scout insisted that Gerhart’s skin color will
likely prevent him from being drafted in Thursday’s first round. ‘He’ll be a great
second-round pickup for somebody, but I guarantee you if he was the exact same
guy—but he was black—he’d go in the first round for sure,’ the scout said.”Michael
Silver, “Race Factors into Evaluation of Gerhart,” Yahoo! Sports, April 20, 2011,
accessed May 31, 2011, http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news?slug=msgerhartstereotype042010.
As it turned out, the scout was wrong. But the question of race in sports had flared,
and the media came to it. One story appeared on an MSNBC-affiliated website called
theGrio.com. Writer John Mitchell pointed out that twenty-seven of the NFL’s thirtytwo general managers (those ultimately responsible for draft-day selections) were
white, and so, he asserted, it was “virtually impossible” that racism could work
against Gerhart.John Mitchell, “White Running Back’s Draft Status Won’t Be
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Chapter 10 The Tense Office: Discrimination, Victimization, and Affirmative Action
Hamstrung by Race,” TheGrio.com, April 22, 2010, accessed May 31, 2011,
http://www.thegrio.com/opinion/white-running-backs-draft-status-wont-behamstrung-by-race.php.
John Mitchell is black. In fact, if you go to theGrio.com’s contributor page, you’ll find
that, as a rough estimate, 90 percent of the website’s writers are black, a number
that’s far, far out of proportion with the global percentage of black writers out
there. The disproportion, however, would be less surprising for anyone who’d read
the description the site presents of itself: “TheGrio.com is devoted to providing
African Americans with stories and perspectives that appeal to them but are
underrepresented in existing national news outlets. TheGrio features aggregated
and original video packages, news articles, and blogs on topics from breaking news,
politics, health, business, and entertainment, which concern its niche
audience.”“About theGrio,” TheGrio.com, accessed May 31, 2011,

About TheGrio

On that same page, surfers are directed to a video story about theGrio.com produced
by NBC New York, which is a station aimed at the general market, not theGrio.com’s
niche audience. The story tells of theGrio.com’s origin, and in an interview with the
website’s founder, he remarks that his contributors are very diverse: “We have
conservatives, liberals, old folks, young folks, rich folks, poor folks, politicians and
plain folks.”“About theGrio,” TheGrio.com, accessed May 31, 2011,

About TheGrio

The NBC story also informs us that the idea for creating a site that aggregated news
stories involving the black community was taken to NBC executives who agreed to
sponsor the website. We don’t learn which specific NBC execs received the proposal,
but a quick check of the network’s directors and programming directors and so on
leads to the strong suspicion that most were white.
Questions about racial discrimination are tangled and difficult. Here are a few of the
knotted uncertainties arising from the Gerhart episode and its treatment in the
press:
• The story about Toby Gerhart in theGrio.com claimed that the white
Gerhart couldn’t suffer racial discrimination because the people who’d
be drafting him (or not) were white. Is that true, is it impossible for
whites to be racists against other whites?
• Overwhelmingly, running backs in the NFL are black. These are painful
but very high-paying jobs with long vacations and lots of fringe
benefits. Most young guys would be happy with the work, but a certain
racial group holds a near monopoly. Is there racism operating here?
10.1 Racial Discrimination
481
Chapter 10 The Tense Office: Discrimination, Victimization, and Affirmative Action
• TheGrio.com’s workforce is, according to its founder, very diverse in
many ways but completely dominated by a single racial group. Racism?
• MSNBC, which sponsors theGrio.com, currently has a prime-time TV
lineup (Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in the morning and Chris
Matthews, Ed Schultz, Rachel Maddow, and Lawrence O’Donnell at
night) that’s all white. Racism?
What Exactly Is Racial Discrimination?
Racial discrimination1 in the economic world can be defined in three steps:
1. An employment decision—hiring, promoting, demoting, firing, and
related actions—affects an employee or applicant adversely or
positively.
2. The decision is based on the person’s membership in a certain racial
group rather than individual ability and accomplishment with respect
to work-related tasks.
3. The decision rests on unverified or unreasonable stereotypes or
generalizations about members of that racial group.
The first step—someone has to suffer or benefit from the discrimination—is
important because without that, without something tangible to point at, you’re left
making an accusation without evidence.
The second step—discrimination is based on race as opposed to job
qualifications—is critical because it separates the kind of racism we typically
consider vile from the one we normally accept as reasonable. For example, if actors
are being hired to play Toby Gerhart in a biography about his life, and all the
finalists for the role are white guys, well, the casting company probably did
discriminate in terms of race, but this particular discrimination overlaps with
qualifications helping the actor play the part. This contrasts with the alleged racial
discrimination surrounding the Gerhart draft pick: the suspicion that he couldn’t be
very good at running over other people with an oblong leather ball cradled in his
arm because his skin is white. If that’s a baseless premise, then it follows that within
this definition of racism, theGrio.com’s claim that Gerhart has no reason to fear
unfair discrimination because so many NFL general managers are white is, in fact,
wrong. Whites can exhibit racial discrimination against other whites just as blacks
can discriminate against blacks and so on.
1. In a business environment,
treating individuals differently
from others for reasons of race
and at the expense of
professional merit.
10.1 Racial Discrimination
The difference between discriminating in favor of white males to play Gerhart in a
movie and discriminating against white males as running backs is more or less
clear. Between the extremes, however, there are a lot of gray areas. What about the
482
Chapter 10 The Tense Office: Discrimination, Victimization, and Affirmative Action
case of hiring at theGrio.com? Just looking at the list of contributors, it’s hard to
avoid wondering whether they’re picking people based on skin color as opposed to
writing ability. On the other hand, since theGrio.com explicitly states that its mission
is to tell stories affecting the black community, a case could be made that black
writers are more likely to be well qualified since it’s more likely that their lives
significantly connect with that community. It’s not, in other words, that
contributors are hired because they’re black; it’s the fact that they’re black that
helps them possess the kind of background information that will help them write
for theGrio.com.
The definition’s third step—an employment decision rests on unverified or
unreasonable stereotypes or generalizations about members of a racial group—is
also important. Staying on theGrio.com example, there’s a difference between
finding that in specific cases contributors well suited to the site also tend to be
black, and making the stronger generalization that whites, Asians, Hispanics, and so
on are by nature incapable of understanding and connecting with the realities
covered by the web page. This second and generalizing claim eliminates the
opportunity for those others to participate.
Finally, questions about racial discrimination center on purely racial divisions but
overlap with another distinction that can be similar but remains technically
different: ethnicity.
Race concerns descent and heredity. It’s usually visible in ways including skin, hair,
and eye color. Because it’s a biological trait, people can’t change their race.
Ethnicity is the cluster of racial, linguistic, and cultural traits that define a person
as a member of a larger community. The Hispanic ethnic group, for example,
contains multiple races, but is unified by common bonds tracing back to Spanish
and Portuguese languages and customs. Though it’s not common, one’s ethnicity
may change. A girl born in Dublin to Irish parents but adopted by an Argentine
family living in East Los Angeles may ultimately consider herself Hispanic.
The US Census Bureau divides individuals in terms of race and, with a separate
question, ethnicity. It’s not unusual, however, for the two categories to be mixed in
a business environment. Many organizations place Hispanic on the list of racial
options when measuring their workforce’s diversity. In the real world, the line
between race and ethnicity is blurry.
Locating Racism in Business
Questions about racism swirl around the Toby Gerhart episode, but it’s equally clear
that getting a firm grip on which people and institutions involved actually are racist
10.1 Racial Discrimination
483
Chapter 10 The Tense Office: Discrimination, Victimization, and Affirmative Action
is difficult. Nearly all running backs in the NFL are black, and at least one scout
presumes that racial discrimination in favor of that color is an active part of the
reason. But there could also be social and cultural reasons for the imbalance. Maybe
young black men are more likely to devote themselves to football because they see
so many successful role models. Or it may be that players—regardless of their
race—come from a certain economic class or geographic part of the country where,
in fact, blacks happen to be the majority. More explanations could be added. No one
knows for sure which is right.
On the other side, just as it’s prudent to be careful when using words like racist and
pointing fingers, there is real evidence indicating wide and deep currents of racism
in US business life. Generally, there are three evidence types:
1. Experimental
2. Statistical
3. Episodic
One experimental indication of racism2 in hiring comes from economist Marc
Bendick. He paired applicants for gender and appearance, loaded them with similar
qualifications, and sent them to New York City restaurants in search of waiter jobs.
The only notable difference between the two applicants was their race; whites,
blacks, Asians, and Hispanics participated. After 181 restaurant visits in which the
two applicants appeared within an hour of each other, the results were tabulated.
Because four racial groups were investigated there are a lot of cross-tabs, but the
basic finding was simple: with everything else as equal as possible, whites were
significantly more likely to be given information about job duties, receive second
interviews, and be hired. According to Bendick, “The important thing is that we
repeated the experiment dozens of times so that we can be pretty sure when a
pattern emerges it really is differences in employer behavior and not a random
effect.”“City Room,” New York Times, NY/Region, March 31, 2009, accessed May 31,
2011, http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/31/racial-bias-seen-in-hiring-ofwaiters.
2. Evidence of racism in society
gleaned from planned
experiments.
3. Evidence of racism in society
gleaned from statistics.
10.1 Racial Discrimination
In terms of statistical evidence of racism3, racial disparities are significant in
many areas. Income is not atypical. According to the US Census Bureau, in 2006 the
median personal income for Asians was $36,000; for whites $33,000; for blacks
$27,000; and for Hispanics $24,000.U.S. Census, “Table PINC-03. Educational
Attainment—People 25 Years Old and Over, by Total Money Earnings in 2005, Work
Experience in 2005, Age, Race, Hispanic Origin and Sex,” in Current Population Survey
(2006). The disparities contract significantly—but not all the way—when you adjust
for education levels. Surveying only those who hold bachelor’s degrees yields these
numbers: white, $44,000; Asian $42,000; black $42,000; Hispanic $37,000. Going back
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Chapter 10 The Tense Office: Discrimination, Victimization, and Affirmative Action
a little more than a decade, the federal Glass Ceiling Commission produced a set of
striking statistics. According to its study, 97 percent of the senior managers of
Fortune 500 companies are white (and 95 percent are male). That compares with a
broader economic reality in which 57 percent of the working population is female,
or minority, or both.George E. Curry, “Race, Gender and Corporate America,”
District Chronicles, April 24, 2005, accessed May 31, 2011,
http://www.georgecurry.com/columns/race-gender-and-corporate-america.
Episodic evidence of racism4 in business life is real-world episodes where
decisions seem to have been made based on racial distinctions. The venerable
clothier Abercrombie & Fitch, which once outfitted JFK and now sells heavily to
collegians, garnered considerable (and unwanted) media attention when Jennifer
Lu, a former salesperson at the store, took her story to the CBS news program 60
Minutes. According to Lu, she was fired soon after corporate executives patrolled
the store where she worked and informed the store’s manager that the staff was
supposed to look like the models in the store’s display posters. If you’ve been in
Abercrombie, you may remember that they tend to have the blonde, blue-eyed,
football team captain look. Like Toby Gerhart. In an interview with 60 Minutes,
Anthony Ocampo says, “The greeters and the people that worked in the in-season
clothing, most of them, if not all of them, were white. The people that worked in the
stock room, where nobody sees them, were mostly Asian-American, Filipino,
Mexican, Latino.”Rebecca Leung, “The Look of Abercrombie & Fitch,” 60 Minutes,
November 24, 2004, accessed May 31, 2011, http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/
12/05/60minutes/main587099.shtml.
A lawsuit against the store was settled out of court when Abercrombie agreed to pay
almost $50 million to negatively affected employees and beef up their minority
hiring. They also stated that their custom of seeking out new sales staff at
predominantly white fraternities and sororities should be modified.
4. Evidence of racism in society
gleaned from specific,
unplanned occurrences.
5. In a business environment,
treating individuals in terms of
stereotypes or unverified
generalizations and at the
expense of professional merit.
6. Discrimination embedded in an
organization’s culture.
7. Discrimination expressed by an
individual within an
organization that may not
share the outlook.
10.1 Racial Discrimination
Categories of Racial Discrimination
When discrimination5 exists in a business environment, it can be distinguished
into several categories. First, there’s a division between institutional6 and
individual discrimination7. Institutional discrimination is exemplified in the
Abercrombie lawsuit. The preference given to white, football-player types wasn’t
one person at one store; it was part of the corporate culture. Managers were
instructed to include a certain look while excluding others, and presumably their
job depended on their ability to meet that demand. The manager, in other words,
who fired Jennifer Lu may (or may not) have thought it was a terrible thing to …
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