Kiwirob
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PC Gone Nuts.

Wed Nov 21, 2012 6:11 pm

A friend of mine works for a govt department, this department are having their Christmas party this coming Friday, however they won't be serving traditional Norwegian Christmas food due to complaints from some staff members, these staff members cannot eat the food as it's against their religion. Norwegian Christmas food in this part of the country is generally pork belly/ribbe and lamb. So now 140 or so people will not be able to enjoy a traditional Christmas meal with their co-workers because a couple of religious zealots have objected. I don't think this is fair, if these people have an issue with the food they shouldn't attend.

Ribbe (pork belly)

http://www.aperitif.no/var/aperitif/storage/images/oppskrifter2/kokebok/kjoett/julemaaltidet/steking-av-ribbe/5781572-10-nor-NO/Steking-av-ribbe.jpg

Pinnekjott (salted lamb)

http://gfx.dagbladet.no/pub/artikkel/5/55/554/554954/v960_1227260745.jpg
 
vikkyvik
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Wed Nov 21, 2012 6:25 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
A friend of mine works for a govt department, this department are having their Christmas party this coming Friday, however they won't be serving traditional Norwegian Christmas food due to complaints from some staff members, these staff members cannot eat the food as it's against their religion. Norwegian Christmas food in this part of the country is generally pork belly/ribbe and lamb. So now 140 or so people will not be able to enjoy a traditional Christmas meal with their co-workers because a couple of religious zealots have objected. I don't think this is fair, if these people have an issue with the food they shouldn't attend.

This sounds more like the reaction was stupid, rather than the original issue.

Why didn't they just provide alternatives to the traditional Christmas food for those who can't eat it?

I see no issue with folks who can't eat certain items requesting that their company provide alternatives at a company-sanctioned party.

Plus, a lot of my extended family are vegetarians, but they're by no means "religious zealots". What if people have allergies to a particular food? Are they "allergic zealots"?
I'm watching Jeopardy. The category is worst Madonna songs. "This one from 1987 is terrible".
 
aloges
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Wed Nov 21, 2012 6:27 pm

Who celebrates a CHRISTmas dinner if his or her religion forbids the eating of pork?   
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
cmf
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Wed Nov 21, 2012 6:33 pm

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 1):
This sounds more like the reaction was stupid, rather than the original issue.

head on. It is important to remember that it isn't the food that is important. It is meeting in an environment different from the day to day environment.

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 1):
Why didn't they just provide alternatives to the traditional Christmas food for those who can't eat it?

A simple solution that has been very successful where I have seen it used. Coming from a restaurant family I have seen it many times and as a vegetarian I have experienced it often enough.

It is all about being smart and remember what it really is about.
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Kiwirob
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Wed Nov 21, 2012 6:33 pm

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 1):
Why didn't they just provide alternatives to the traditional Christmas food for those who can't eat it?

To date I've never been to a Norwegian Christmas Party where alternatives to traditional food have been offered, I don't have problem with that, after all it's a traditional Norwegian Christmas Party.
 
Rara
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Wed Nov 21, 2012 6:38 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 4):

To date I've never been to a Norwegian Christmas Party where alternatives to traditional food have been offered, I don't have problem with that, after all it's a traditional Norwegian Christmas Party.

In this day and age, with 140 employees (from Norway no less) you're bound to have a good number of vegetarians anyway. Why not provide some meat-free food as well, and there's a good chance that those who are strict about their diet for religious reasons can eat that too.
Samson was a biblical tough guy, but his dad Samsonite was even more of a hard case.
 
vikkyvik
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Wed Nov 21, 2012 7:03 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 4):
To date I've never been to a Norwegian Christmas Party where alternatives to traditional food have been offered

So?

Quoting aloges (Reply 2):
Who celebrates a CHRISTmas dinner if his or her religion forbids the eating of pork?

If my employer is holding a Christmas/holiday dinner, why wouldn't I go?
I'm watching Jeopardy. The category is worst Madonna songs. "This one from 1987 is terrible".
 
Kiwirob
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Wed Nov 21, 2012 7:27 pm

Quoting Rara (Reply 5):
In this day and age, with 140 employees (from Norway no less) you're bound to have a good number of vegetarians anyway. Why not provide some meat-free food as well, and there's a good chance that those who are strict about their diet for religious reasons can eat that too.

For the vegitarians (I've never met a Norwegian vegetarian BTW) there are the non meat items that come with Norwegian Christmas food. That should be enough to keep them happy.

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 6):
So?

So, why should an alternative be offered, it's a traditional Norwegian Christmas meal, Norwegians are very fond of these traditions and don't like anyone messing with them.
 
aloges
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Wed Nov 21, 2012 8:16 pm

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 6):
If my employer is holding a Christmas/holiday dinner, why wouldn't I go?

I can't think of a reason, mostly because you don't seem to follow a strict interpretation of any religion. It is, however, hypocritical to join a celebration of the birth of Christ if you adhere so strictly to another religion that you "have" to spoil other people's Christmas dinner because your religion forbids its main ingredient.

I do agree with you:

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 1):
This sounds more like the reaction was stupid, rather than the original issue.

but KiwiRob's relation of the story sounded like the person/people in question didn't lobby for a more diverse buffet, but against the traditional option... or like something with equal consequences happened.
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
sprout5199
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Wed Nov 21, 2012 11:37 pm

Pork I can understand, but Lamb? I thought all religions could eat lamb. HMMMM

I'm on both sides on this. I can understand why someone would not want to attend a Christmas dinner and be forced to eat food that is against my religion.

GET OVER IT PEOPLE, I'm not trying to convert you to my religion because I want you at party. And if you are that weak about your religion, that you may convert because I served you some food, you do need a new religion.


Dan in Jupiter
 
RussianJet
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 1:23 am

Those who don't want the traditional pork should get a nice bowl of SODD - or perhaps, sodd off......

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sodd
✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
 
fr8mech
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 1:47 am

Quoting sprout5199 (Reply 10):
I'm on both sides on this. I can understand why someone would not want to attend a Christmas dinner and be forced to eat food that is against my religion.


Forced? You're telling me that the Norwegians put on their Viking helmets and will hold down those who object to eating pork and shove it into their mouths?  Wow!

If your religion forbids you from eating pork and pork is the main constituent of a Christmas dinner and/or party, you have the choice to not attend. If you choose to attend, don't be offended by the offerings.
When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
 
Maverick623
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 8:22 am

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 7):
So, why should an alternative be offered, it's a traditional Norwegian Christmas meal, Norwegians are very fond of these traditions and don't like anyone messing with them.

Ah, but by the same token, the objectors are objecting because of their traditions. And no, not all of them are immigrants.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 12):

If your religion forbids you from eating pork and pork is the main constituent of a Christmas dinner and/or party, you have the choice to not attend. If you choose to attend, don't be offended by the offerings.

I can agree with that. However, I like to make as many people as happy as possible. Throw in a side table of offerings that anyone can eat... like some vegetarian and non-pork dishes. Everyone gets to eat and be happy. Being stubborn about stubbornness breeds more stubbornness, and it comes back around until we have yet another holy war.
"PHX is Phoenix, PDX is the other city" -777Way
 
fr8mech
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 8:34 am

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 14):
I can agree with that. However, I like to make as many people as happy as possible. Throw in a side table of offerings that anyone can eat... like some vegetarian and non-pork dishes. Everyone gets to eat and be happy. Being stubborn about stubbornness breeds more stubbornness, and it comes back around until we have yet another holy war.


We love to entertain. And we have a couple of friends that are Muslim. When we have a bunch of people over, we offer a variety of meals, including pork. No one makes a fuss, we all just eat and have a good time. The Muslims don't eat the pork. Easy.

The OP's situation is different. The protesting group isn't looking for an accommodation, they're looking for capitulation...and it appears they've won. And, that is wrong.
When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
 
Maverick623
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 8:42 am

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 13):

The OP's situation is different. The protesting group isn't looking for an accommodation, they're looking for capitulation...and it appears they've won. And, that is wrong.

I saw nothing to suggest they wanted "capitulation".

I'm not familiar with Norwegian HR types, but American HR departments have a tendency to staff insecure types of people. It's very possible that the workers in question complained about not having non-kosher food at the party, and in response (either out of real fear of a lawsuit or just a tactic to generate bad publicity against them) decided that there was to be NO pork at the party.
"PHX is Phoenix, PDX is the other city" -777Way
 
fr8mech
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 9:00 am

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 14):
It's very possible that the workers in question complained about not having non-kosher food at the party, and in response (either out of real fear of a lawsuit or just a tactic to generate bad publicity against them) decided that there was to be NO pork at the party.

Same result. A couple of forceful folks push over the HR folks. My guess, and it is a guess, is that pork would not have been tolerated and a bigger stink made.
When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
 
Rara
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 9:43 am

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 13):
The OP's situation is different. The protesting group isn't looking for an accommodation, they're looking for capitulation...and it appears they've won. And, that is wrong.

Yes, well, then again, any and all information we have about the incident is from said threadstarter himself, who made very clear what he thinks of Muslim eating habits in a recently deleted post.
Samson was a biblical tough guy, but his dad Samsonite was even more of a hard case.
 
Maverick623
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 9:58 am

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 15):
Same result.

But how do you fix it, if you don't care who's to blame?

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 15):
A couple of forceful folks push over the HR folks

Trust me, when it comes to "minority issues" it don't take much force to push them over (right or wrong).

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 15):
My guess, and it is a guess, is that pork would not have been tolerated and a bigger stink made.

No offense, but that just shows your prejudice. There is not NEARLY enough information in any post to make that guess.
"PHX is Phoenix, PDX is the other city" -777Way
 
Kiwirob
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 10:19 am

Quoting Rara (Reply 16):
who made very clear what he thinks of Muslim eating habits in a recently deleted post.

Not just muslim, jewish as well, in this day and age the way meat is slaughtered for these religious groups is disgusting, we have rules for the humane treatment of animals, so no reason why religion should negate these rules.
 
fr8mech
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 10:27 am

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 17):
Trust me, when it comes to "minority issues" it don't take much force to push them over (right or wrong).


I deal with HR all the time. You're right, it doesn't take much, but we all know that groups take advantage of that mindset.

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 17):
There is not NEARLY enough information in any post to make that guess.


You're right. There isn't enough information, but I'll stand by my guess. It's not prejudice, it's stereotyping based on observations. And yes, we all stereotype, whether you want to believe it or not.

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 17):
But how do you fix it, if you don't care who's to blame?


I actually do care. Problem is, that we have a group that is more than willing to exert pressure and impose their belief system on the majority around them and you have another group (HR, in this case) that bow to this pressure. Of course, that's assuming that the OP's rendition of the facts is correct.
When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
 
fr8mech
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 10:57 am

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 18):
Not just muslim, jewish as well, in this day and age the way meat is slaughtered for these religious groups is disgusting, we have rules for the humane treatment of animals, so no reason why religion should negate these rules.


I disagree. I won't speak for other nations, but, here in the US, we do need to allow religious groups their core beliefs. I don't necessarily agree with the methods, but they are their methods and they can be traced back to the origins of the religions.
When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
 
Kiwirob
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 1:05 pm

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 20):
I disagree. I won't speak for other nations, but, here in the US, we do need to allow religious groups their core beliefs.

Have you ever been to a freezing works and watched beasts slaughtered, I have, I went with an uncle who was a butcher, animals killed with a captive bolt die quickly, animals with their throats slit die in pain and make a lot of noise, the killing chain workers do not like it when killing animals for hallil and kosher meat.

I do not see why civiliased people should be allowed to treat killing animals with such distain for the purposes of religion, we are supposed to be better than this.

We can allow immigrants and religions folk their core beliefs up to a certain point, we should not have to change our behavior to accommodate them.
 
smittyone
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 1:15 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
A friend of mine works for a govt department, this department are having their Christmas party this coming Friday, however they won't be serving traditional Norwegian Christmas food due to complaints from some staff members, these staff members cannot eat the food as it's against their religion. Norwegian Christmas food in this part of the country is generally pork belly/ribbe and lamb. So now 140 or so people will not be able to enjoy a traditional Christmas meal with their co-workers because a couple of religious zealots have objected. I don't think this is fair, if these people have an issue with the food they shouldn't attend.

The problem here isn't pork...it's that the leadership of a diverse organization is throwing a "Christmas Party" in the first place. Is that going to be held before or after their "Celebration of Being White", or the "Gays Only Retreat"?

This whole issue could have been averted with a little bit of common sense...ie throw a 'Holiday Party' and ask for feedback on the menu. Then non-Christians could identify the fact that they can't eat the main course and request an alternative.

Mutual respect. Problem solved. Ironic that I (the damned atheist) needed to point out something so obvious.

Edit:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 13):
The OP's situation is different. The protesting group isn't looking for an accommodation, they're looking for capitulation...and it appears they've won. And, that is wrong.

This may be true, but people get like this when they feel marginalized for being different on something as elemental as religious belief. If they felt like they were valued they'd probably offer to bring a food to share from their tradition.

Just because an action seeks to accommodate something other than the default majority worldview (in this case Christianity), doesn't make it a cynical concession to political correctness. Sometimes it's just the right thing to do.



[Edited 2012-11-22 05:28:50]
 
smittyone
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 2:19 pm

Quoting aloges (Reply 8):
It is, however, hypocritical to join a celebration of the birth of Christ if you adhere so strictly to another religion that you "have" to spoil other people's Christmas dinner because your religion forbids its main ingredient.

The real hypocrisy is throwing a "Christmas" party in the workplace when not all of the employees are Christians.
 
Kiwirob
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 2:41 pm

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 23):
The real hypocrisy is throwing a "Christmas" party in the workplace when not all of the employees are Christians.

When the vast and I mean vast majority (apparently only 4 people in the entire 140 weren't ethnic Norwegian) why should any accommodation be made. My company is having it's Christmas party next week, there will be 300 hundred odd people going, we have over 20 different nationalities working here and I guarantee all the food with be ethnic Norwegian christmas food, after all we chose to move here so we should expect to follow the local traditions. I don't expect to see NZ style Christmas food on the table, I can't see why anyone else should either.

I'd feel fairly confident that if I was going to a Hanuka party all the food there would be jewish and kosher, would any efforts be made to satisfy my tastes and dislike of how kosher meat is killed, I doubt it.
 
WestJet747
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 3:31 pm

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 22):
The problem here isn't pork...it's that the leadership of a diverse organization is throwing a "Christmas Party" in the first place. Is that going to be held before or after their "Celebration of Being White", or the "Gays Only Retreat"?
Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 23):
The real hypocrisy is throwing a "Christmas" party in the workplace when not all of the employees are Christians.

So I guess the non-Christians shouldn't get days off for Christmas then, eh?

Like you, I'm an atheist, but even I believe that we shouldn't make concessions for everyone, it's just not realistic. Christmas has become more than a religious holiday, it's become a national holiday in many places, and it shouldn't be changed because a few outsiders don't like it. This will sound awful xenophobic of me, but if a very small minority moves to a country and doesn't like the way things are done, they should either adapt, have to make their own concessions, or go somewhere else that caters to their ideals. Do you think I'm going to go to India and raise a stink about not getting to enjoy a nice steak? The onus shouldn't be on the home country to bow down to the various minorities.

It reminds of in high school when they started calling the massive tree in our school's foyer a "festive bush" (yes, they really called it that) instead of "Christmas tree", because my school had a high proportion of ESL (English as a Second Language) students who weren't Christian. It's ridiculous because nothing physically or symbolically about the tree changed, they literally just changed the name, which was apparently good enough for some people.
Flying refined.
 
Maverick623
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 4:33 pm

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 22):
This may be true, but people get like this when they feel marginalized for being different on something as elemental as religious belief.
Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 22):

The problem here isn't pork...it's that the leadership of a diverse organization is throwing a "Christmas Party" in the first place. Is that going to be held before or after their "Celebration of Being White", or the "Gays Only Retreat"?

This whole issue could have been averted with a little bit of common sense...ie throw a 'Holiday Party' and ask for feedback on the menu. Then non-Christians could identify the fact that they can't eat the main course and request an alternative.

Seriously, if you're that bothered by the word "Christmas"... well...

"PHX is Phoenix, PDX is the other city" -777Way
 
smittyone
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 5:42 pm

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 26):
Seriously, if you're that bothered by the word "Christmas"... well...

I've got no problem with Christmas...other than the fact that I've got to put the damned tree up again tomorrow (seems like we just took it down).

What bothers me is when a majority assume that their beliefs or traditions are (or should be) the default for everyone, and get nasty whenever someone suggests a more inclusive approach.

I couldn't care less what some Norwegian government department does, but I contend that they could have avoided this entire mess by not viewing small efforts to make different people feel welcome as 'concessions' in the first place. This silly pork debacle isn't about the food, it's about the 'tude.
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 6:26 pm

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 27):
What bothers me is when a majority assume that their beliefs or traditions are (or should be) the default for everyone, and get nasty whenever someone suggests a more inclusive approach.

I call BS. If I go to Germany and Beer and pork offend me, it's up to me to leave. If find women in skimpy bikinis offensive, don't go to the Riviera.
Forget dogs and cats - Spay and neuter your liberals.
 
smittyone
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 8:37 pm

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 28):

I call BS. If I go to Germany and Beer and pork offend me, it's up to me to leave. If find women in skimpy bikinis offensive, don't go to the Riviera.

No shit, Sherlock. Who in their right mind would disagree with these obvious and largely superficial examples?

Unfortunately, what I was discussing before you parachuted in is a substantially different issue - how EMPLOYERS ought to deal with ethnic or religious diversity in their workforce.

I stand by what I said...if you think it's smart for employers to throw "Christmas" parties when they know damned well that some of their employees are not Christians, or to begrudge the cultural variations in their workforce instead of seeing them as opportunities to share and grow, then best of luck to you.
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 8:51 pm

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 29):
Unfortunately, what I was discussing before you parachuted in is a substantially different issue - how EMPLOYERS ought to deal with ethnic or religious diversity in their workforce.

Within reason, that's how much.

If you are in a predominantly Christian country, it is perfectly fine to have a Christmas party, with a Christmas tree and a manger scene if you like.

If you are in a Nordic country (many of which have pork as a significant part of their diet), it is perfectly fine to serve pork.

As far as the people who are not Christian, or do not eat pork, you make sure there are alternatives on the menu, and that they are welcome to join in the Christmas party if they like.

But if they insist of being offended at what we celebrate and what we eat, and insist on making a fuss about it, I would volunteer to be the first one to kick them out the door.

[Edited 2012-11-22 12:51:35]
Forget dogs and cats - Spay and neuter your liberals.
 
smittyone
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 9:15 pm

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 30):
If you are in a predominantly Christian country, it is perfectly fine to have a Christmas party, with a Christmas tree and a manger scene if you like.

Rhetorical question - what percentage of your workforce needs to be non-Christian before you decide to call it a 'holiday party' and invite people to contribute items from their cultures?

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 30):
If you are in a Nordic country (many of which have pork as a significant part of their diet), it is perfectly fine to serve pork.

Yum!

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 30):
As far as the people who are not Christian, or do not eat pork, you make sure there are alternatives on the menu

Ding! We have a winner!

Do you suppose that is what happened in this case?
 
nickh
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Thu Nov 22, 2012 9:52 pm

This thread about political correctness (stupidity) reminds me of a lawsuit, filed about a decade (or more) ago by a group of Hindu Vegetarians, against McDonald's Restaurants.

Evidently, these people were eating at a McDonald's (we'll get to the absurdity of that fact alone, in just a second) and they felt that McDonald's mis-represented themselves by letting them believe that their French Fries were vegetarian. Apparently, at that time, McDonald's used to cook their fries in Lard (Pork Fat) and that did not sit well with these vegetarians.

They won the lawsuit and as far as I know, Mickey D's now only uses vegetable oils for their deep frying.

The ABSURDITY of this is WHY were these people dining there in the first place? McDonald's is not exactly known for being a bastion of veggie food. Could they not have packed some vacuum sealed veggie sticks (carrots, c thelery) which do not require refrigeration (assuming that they were on a trip somewhere and McDonald's was the only available restaurant.

Then also, there was that (in)famous case about the granny who spilled hot McDonald's coffee on her crotch, burned herself and then sued [and won] the case for $12-Million. It's COFFEE you dumb witch! It is SUPPOSED to be hot!! Cupholders! Learn to use them! So as a result, MCD now serves coffee at a reduced temperature.

[SIGH]. Too much stupidity in this world.

-Nick
"We all have wings, but some of us don't know why..."
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 12:47 am

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 31):
Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 30):
As far as the people who are not Christian, or do not eat pork, you make sure there are alternatives on the menu

Ding! We have a winner!

Do you suppose that is what happened in this case?

If that had been the case, there would have been no thread.

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
they won't be serving traditional Norwegian Christmas food due to complaints from some staff members, these staff members cannot eat the food as it's against their religion. Norwegian Christmas food in this part of the country is generally pork belly/ribbe and lamb. So now 140 or so people will not be able to enjoy a traditional Christmas meal with their co-workers because a couple of religious zealots have objected.

They not only objected to having to eat pork (which I can understand), but objected to having to tolerate anyone else around them eating pork either.

It sounds like it is those people who need a lesson in tolerance and diversity training, not their Norwegian hosts.
Forget dogs and cats - Spay and neuter your liberals.
 
cmf
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 1:13 am

Quoting nickh (Reply 32):
The ABSURDITY of this is WHY were these people dining there in the first place? McDonald's is not exactly known for being a bastion of veggie food.

Because McD said it was vegetarian.

Quoting nickh (Reply 32):
Then also, there was that (in)famous case about the granny who spilled hot McDonald's coffee on her crotch, burned herself and then sued [and won] the case for $12-Million. It's COFFEE you dumb witch! It is SUPPOSED to be hot!!

Dumb witch??? You should spend a few moments gathering facts. Then you will learn that the coffee that, as you say, is supposed to be hot wasn't, it was scalding hot. At the time they had already had some 700 cases and paid some 500 kUSD in compensation.

Then this case was picked up and abused by people wanting tort reform.
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DarkSnowyNight
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 1:28 am

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 31):

Rhetorical question - what percentage of your workforce needs to be non-Christian before you decide to call it a 'holiday party' and invite people to contribute items from their cultures?

Anything above zero.

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 27):

I couldn't care less what some Norwegian government department does, but I contend that they could have avoided this entire mess by not viewing small efforts to make different people feel welcome as 'concessions' in the first place.

Right. They could have avoided this mess simply by being more respectful and inclusive. Perhaps that is somewhat ironic.

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 26):
Seriously, if you're that bothered by the word "Christmas"... well...

That's a popular and poorly contrived strawman argument. Not getting your way at every single juncture does not equate to persecution.

Quoting nickh (Reply 32):

Then also, there was that (in)famous case about the granny who spilled hot McDonald's coffee on her crotch, burned herself and then sued [and won] the case for $12-Million. It's COFFEE you dumb witch! It is SUPPOSED to be hot!! Cupholders! Learn to use them! So as a result, MCD now serves coffee at a reduced temperature.

Way off topic, but I cannot even begin to tell you how many things in this statement are just flat-out wrong.

Please feel free to research this if you'd like (listed as Liebeck v McDonalds). The truth there is that McDonalds was indeed quite far beyond incredibly negligent in the way they handled this. In fact, they were offered several opportunities to pay for the medical costs associated with this incident (Mrs Liebeck suffered third degree burns across her pelvic region.) Additionally, product liability came into play as this coffee was actually served far above the temperature it was advertised to be, and improperly secured in the first place. Neither you nor anyone else would have had anyway of knowing this, prior to skin contact. But they did, or should have, hence the verdict.

It may also interest you to know that this was a comparative liability decision, so Liebeck's own negligence in spilling it was taken into account. There was also never a $12 mio award. It was 2.7, + 160,000; ultimately reduced to less than $600,000 all together.

This was not a frivolous suit, and the initial verdict is generally recognized in the legal community as having a rock solid basis in law.

I only go off on this tangent as it is pricelessly astounding how many people still believe what can only be described as utter bullshit on this one. I generally believe in limiting excess judgments, FYI, but this case is not even remotely in that category.

Just to illustrate not only how much people don't know about that case, but how much misinformation they believe, see if you can answer this. Was Mrs Liebeck (as is commonly believed) actually driving when she got burned?
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smittyone
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 2:18 am

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 33):
They not only objected to having to eat pork (which I can understand), but objected to having to tolerate anyone else around them eating pork either.

To be fair, we don't know that to be true from what little KiwiRob told us.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 33):
It sounds like it is those people who need a lesson in tolerance and diversity training, not their Norwegian hosts.

Their NORWEGIAN hosts? The folks who brought up the pork issue were also Norwegians, weren't they? Government employees?
 
fr8mech
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 2:21 am

Quoting Darksnowynight (Reply 35):
Anything above zero.

So, if even one person, in an organization, is not Christian, the organization must accomadate that person during a Christmas party? Utter rubbish.
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DarkSnowyNight
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 2:48 am

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 37):

So, if even one person, in an organization, is not Christian, the organization must accomadate that person during a Christmas party?

Yes. And what's hard to understand about that? No one's saying they can't have christian food too. They just need to accommodate their minorities too.
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777way
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 3:01 am

Very Incosiderate on the part of the hosts and the non-chtistian guests, for not providing alternate dishes and for forcing the menu to be changed, it would be better for the non-christians not to attend such events, than force their views on others a suggestion to provide alternatives is ok but to fuss and force changes is not.

Would I as a muslim attend, YES! would not take offense to the stuff being served, would only eat salads and similar things, would not request menu change, would suggest alternate dishes for non-christians if they dont provide it no problem.

Would I like it to be called Holiday instead of Christmas to accomadate non-christians, NEVER!

Also if it were a muslim Eid get together and non-muslims were invited, depending on the company and its thinking you could have it all or nothing.

Quoting nickh (Reply 32):

Not all Hindus are vegetarian alot of them do eat poultry, game, fish and lamb but dont touch beef because cows are considered sacred and prok because pigs are impure ,however the secular ones even eat those.

[Edited 2012-11-22 19:58:16]
 
Quokkas
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 3:38 am

The trouble I have with this discussion is that all sorts of assumptions are being made on the basis of very flimsy facts. We have hearsay evidence of something that may or may not have happened.

We are told that due to complaints a decision was made. What we are not told is how the complaints were framed. What words were exchanged between the parties? Was there an outright threat to refuse to attend and lodge a claim for discrimination or was there a request for a broader menu? Was any effort made to provide such a menu? Was the original menu a set menu that the caterers were unwilling to change unless additional payment was made. So many questions but so few answers.

I don't think that the problem necessarily was that the party is a Christmas Party. If that were the case the question of the menu wouldn't be an issue at all. Muslims may not celebrate Christmas but they do recognise Jesus/ Isa as a prophet and have no objection to commemorating his birth as such.

I really don't see what is the problem with trying to be inclusive and why people ask "even if one person... should an accommodation be made?" If this is actually a Christmas Party, rather than simply an excuse to pig-out (or in this instance a desire to pig-in) then it might be useful to remember the bit about loving your neighbour as oneself.

Many people (of all faiths) believe that faith is sufficient to make them a true believer, but remember 1 Corinthians 13:2 - "And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity1, I am nothing."

What is charity? It is love of God and for ones fellow human beings. It is not about putting 5NOK in a collection plate or donating second-hand clothes to an Opshop. It involves compassion and treating people as one would like to be treated. Anything else is pretty mean-spirited and un-Christian and I don't even pretend to be a Christian.

One irony in all this is that Jesus himself probably followed Mosaic law when it came to diet and food preparation. Yet in order to spread his word the founders of Christianity were willing to accommodate those who didn't. Even the Qur'an recognises that God or Allah made allowances for Christians. If God/ Allah can make allowances, surely mere mortals can.

Note 1: Many versions of the bible substitute the word love for charity.
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777way
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 4:02 am

^ True, it could all have happened in jovial manner for all we know, with funny sarcasm and what not, and has been twisted into another thing here.
 
AR385
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 4:58 am

I have worked at a very big energy, multinational conglomerate based in Houston. We had operations in many, many countries, with different cultures, religious backgrounds and business ways. Our main Holiday parties were held at Houston´s Museum of Natural History.

If you think that in such a company you can throw a "Holiday" party without offering things in the menu that cater to all beliefs and cultures where you are present as a company and as an employer, then you probably are living in a different century.

This company even gave us TWO personal days a year to use to our discretion for our own religious purposes.

If you want to become a big multinational player, then, too bad, you will have to change your ways, even sofar as if you throw a party at the company´s homebase, it´s going to be a bit more complicated than your average "happy birthday" gig.

It´s not even a question of good manners, but it is a question of sound business practice.

I´m surprised by this thread. The Norwegians are very nice, accomodating people and I´m surprised no other menu choices were offered. Then again, as said before, we can only go by the OP´s assertions which given my experience, seem pretty biased.
 
Charles79
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 5:46 am

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
I don't think this is fair, if these people have an issue with the food they shouldn't attend.

In my opinion, I think it's fair...and certainly not the big deal some are making it out to be. Chances are this is the only time during the year when the employer/office/department does something celebratory for its staff...wouldn't you want the event to be as inclusive as possible so that 100% of the employees can enjoy? It's not like the employer is saying that folks cannot enjoy their traditional food outside of work (and if Norway is like Germany, there'll be plenty of traditional food at the Christmas markets). What the employer is saying is that, since this is our only chance of saying thanks to all of its staff, then lets make it so that everyone can participate and enjoy. It's not a matter of offending or not offending, rather simply a matter of making a decision that is fair for everyone.

One aspect that seems forgotten is the fact that the employer is a government department. Chances are the budget for this holiday party is not substantial and most likely they had to select only one vendor to cater the whole party. Maybe the vendor that could offer the "traditional" fare can't supply non-traditional dishes so they had to go with a vendor that offers more variety but nothing traditional.

Rant/
On a side note, as a non religious person, I find the whole topic of the "Christian" holidays rather confusing. Here I am, in the USA, in the midst of the "Christian" traditions and holidays while said "Christians" are doing all they can to commercialize both Thanksgiving and Christmas to the point that the meaning behind these "holy" days is lost. Sorry but from my point of view the "attack" on Christmas is not coming from other faiths or non-religious folks...it's coming from the "Christians" themselves who'd rather spend more time shopping for crap they don't really need than actually being thankful, enjoying time with their family, and giving thanks for all the crap they already have.
//Rant Over
 
Kiwirob
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 7:49 am

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 36):
The folks who brought up the pork issue were also Norwegians, weren't they?

No they were immigrants.
 
CXB77L
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 10:27 am

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 24):
after all we chose to move here so we should expect to follow the local traditions.

  

If only all immigrant minority groups thought like that rather than expect the majority to bend over backwards for them ...

I'm a migrant to Australia myself, and am part of an ethnic minority here, but I would absolutely not expect anyone to treat me any differently to everyone else. I try my best to adapt to the cultures and traditions of my adopted country (as well as language).

I think the world would be a more peaceful place if everyone lived in harmony, regardless of ethnicity or culture. Cultural diversity is great, so long as it is not used as a source of conflict. I think the message to all immigrants should be to blend in and accept local cultures and traditions, rather than expect others to bend over backwards to accommodate their differences.

There's nothing wrong with being proud of one's heritage and celebrating their own culture. But when that celebration clashes with members of a different heritage and culture, it becomes a problem, and I believe that the solution should not result in one having to bend over backwards to accommodate the other. One of my friends is a vegetarian, and when I have dinner parties, I will try to accommodate him by having a vegetarian option on the menu, but what I will not do is to strike meat off the menu altogether.

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 25):
It reminds of in high school when they started calling the massive tree in our school's foyer a "festive bush" (yes, they really called it that) instead of "Christmas tree", because my school had a high proportion of ESL (English as a Second Language) students who weren't Christian.


If that's not political correctness gone mad, I don't know what is ...

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 26):

  

It would seem that Western society is being forced to bend over backwards to accommodate the minority groups at the expense of their own culture (I wouldn't even go into beliefs as not everyone that celebrates Christmas is a Christian). And I think that's a shame.

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 29):
how EMPLOYERS ought to deal with ethnic or religious diversity in their workforce.

My answer is that they shouldn't. Why can't everyone, regardless of ethnicity, gender, culture or religion, be treated the same?

An invitation to a Christmas party is not by default discrimination against non-Christians, nor the serving of pork by default discrimination against Muslims (or anyone else that do not eat pork). As I understand it from the OP, the invitation to the Christmas party wasn't limited to Christians only, it was open to the entire workforce to attend - to which they had the option to decline.
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DarkSnowyNight
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 10:33 am

Quoting CXB77L (Reply 45):

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 25):
It reminds of in high school when they started calling the massive tree in our school's foyer a "festive bush" (yes, they really called it that) instead of "Christmas tree", because my school had a high proportion of ESL (English as a Second Language) students who weren't Christian.


If that's not political correctness gone mad, I don't know what is ...

True enough. The only thing that should ever be termed "festive bush" better be attached to the kind of women Superfly digs.
Be A Perfectionst, You're Nothing If You're Just Another; Something Material, This Isn't Personal...
 
777way
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 11:34 am

Just noticed that lamb was on offe rwhich is ok with all so the issue must have been kosher or halal doubt if it was vegan.
 
Fabo
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 2:23 pm

Quoting Charles79 (Reply 43):
while said "Christians" are doing all they can to commercialize both Thanksgiving and Christmas to the point that the meaning behind these "holy" days is lost.

Aehm. SInce when, exactly, is Thanksgiving a Christian holiday?
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smittyone
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RE: PC Gone Nuts.

Fri Nov 23, 2012 2:30 pm

Quoting CXB77L (Reply 45):
My answer is that they shouldn't. Why can't everyone, regardless of ethnicity, gender, culture or religion, be treated the same?

An invitation to a Christmas party is not by default discrimination against non-Christians, nor the serving of pork by default discrimination against Muslims (or anyone else that do not eat pork). As I understand it from the OP, the invitation to the Christmas party wasn't limited to Christians only, it was open to the entire workforce to attend - to which they had the option to decline.

How exactly does the management of a government office inviting their employees to a party commemorating a specific religious faith constitute "treating everyone the same"? That action clearly and officially favors the Christians. Again I ask - at what percentage of non-Christians in the organization do you think the employer should expand the theme of the party beyond Christianity? What is your rational basis for that number?

As for your second paragraph, I disagree. Saying "You're welcome to join us" to non-Christians who are ostensibly already part of the "us" by virtue of being an employee sends a negative message loud and clear. That is why smart organizations (private or gov't) go out of their way to make everyone feel welcome by doing the inclusive things we've already talked about.

If they had done that from the outset in this case, my bet is that pork would be on the menu and people wouldn't be whining about how unfair it is that these immigrants ruined the party for the 'real' Norwegians.

[Edited 2012-11-23 06:35:28]

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