One of the biggest news items this week is that Bill O’Reilly has been forced to leave Fox News after spending seventeen years on the cable news program. He has been accused of sexual harassment by several women. I have a problem with that. It is my humble opinion that these women are all left wingers who are so upset with O’Reilly’s friendship with Trump that they have ponyed up the claims just to hurt him and Fox news.
I worked in a coed office environment and can testify that some women are paranoid. The company hired a consultant to come in to train all supervisors on the abc’s of sexual harassment. The whole matter is highly subjective, and biased in the women’s favor. The government smartly put the onus on the employer. If one of our people was accused of sexual harassment the company was obligated to do something about it. If they didn’t, the company was liable for the outcome.
Some girls thought it was a shame. The first lady draftsman I hired for the company actually had a sign hanging in her cube which said, “I tolerate sexual harassment, but it will be graded.”
One of the most serious incidents occurred between an engineer and the girl who made blueprints of our machine drawings. The engineer was an older man sixty-ish, and a confirmed bachelor who lived with his mother and another single brother. The girl who made the copies was a hot twenty something who oozed sex appeal. There wasn’t a guy in the department who didn’t make a move on her daily. One day she came into my office, and told me that Ronald was harassing her. I almost fell out of my chair. “How does he bother you?” I asked.
“He comes to the print room and stands at the service window watching me.”
I was stunned. “He watches you/”
“How often does this happen?”
“Sometimes, several times a day., He creeps me out.”
Let me give you some background on Ronald. He takes care of his aged mother with his younger brother. He has several other siblings all of whom are married and have children. Ronald is an introvert. He will only speak when spoken to, and will not offer information unless asked. His dream is to retire to Arkansas with his brother. He spends his lunch hour designing the perfect retirement home with an elevator. The elevator is just in case he is too feeble to use stairs. Ronald speaks highly of his family, and his nieces and nephews. He has photos of them around his desk.
When I confronted Ronald about the accusation of harassment he was just as surprised as I was. “All I do is wait for a chance to ask her to make a print for me, and she ignores me.” I bought his explanation because that is the Ronald I knew. It didn’t matter, he was accused of harassment, and I had to write up my discussion with him, and put it into his file. I instructed him to leave a written request form at the door with the original, and to leave instead of waiting.
Men and women can speak to each other very explicitly with double entendres and sometimes outright invitations to sexual encounters without any talk of harassment. Yet, there are times when the words, or a look, or an implication becomes harassment. Only the woman knows when she feels threatened. If she chooses to speak up, the employer must address the situation.
I bring this up because sometimes what is simple miscommunication can be construed as harassment. Then there are other times when the harassment is clearly a breach of common sense. I am hoping that the Bill O’Reilly incident is one of the simple ones which are ridiculous. Unfortunately, this afternoon I heard a rumor from a friend that he was taped by a woman while he was talking to her in sexually explicit manner. My buddies rumor turned out to be an article by columnist John Kass who writes for the Chicago Tribune. I trust Kass, he is a true journalist meaning his seeks the truth and writes it as it is. In his article Who Wrote Killing Bill o’Reilly? he describes the encounter which did O’Reilly in. O’Reilly is toast. He used his power to seduce a woman for his own gratification. He wasn’t a Ronald waiting at the window in the print room, he was a sexual predator. It is sad because I liked his reporting.
Fox news will survive, and so will Bill O’Reilly, but they won’t be in business together. There is a good chance that O’Reilly will never work on TV again.
What is strange about this story is the incident took place in 2004. Why did it take thirteen years to make the news and what took Fox News so long to decide they had a problem? Like I said in the beginning of this post, it is most likely a Left wing assault on an enemy.