They sure do hate gay people, don’t they? The ‘they’ being nearly all of the Republican Party as it now presents itself: a wholly owned subsidiary of the Christian extremists.
Poor Wisconsin, a state I’d once liked so much. At this rate it’s going to be a place I never go again. Scott Walker and his reactionary GOP are showing the way to a terrible future.
A commissioner on the board that makes final decisions in cases involving workplace discrimination says Wisconsin law does not prohibit anti-gay harassment on the job.
Her two fellow commissioners strongly disagree.
Laurie McCallum, who was recently appointed by Gov. Scott Walker to a six-year term on the state’s Labor and Industry Review Commission, wrote that the Wisconsin Fair Employment Act applies only to sexual harassment. That contention was the basis for her dissenting opinion in a case involving Milwaukeean Chris Bowen, a machine operator who was subjected to years of anti-gay harassment as an employee of Stroh Precision Die Casting.
In a 2-1 decision, commissioners Robert Glaser and Ann L. Crump found that Stroh was responsible for fostering a workplace environment hostile to Bowen because of his sexual orientation. Stroh did not deny that the harassment occurred; nor did the company argue that anti-gay harassment is allowed under state law during the eight years that the case bounced around the court system.
But McCallum, the politically connected wife of former GOP Gov. Scott McCallum, defied nearly 30 years of precedent in state law by asserting that sexual “preference,” as she put it, is not a protected category in workplace discrimination cases.
The court record showed that a group of Bowen’s co-workers repeatedly called him “fag,” “maricon” and “my little bitch,” among other slurs, over a period of years. Bowen once found a bulls-eye hunting target over which the word “gay” was written stuck to his toolbox. Someone put a sign that said, “queer” or “queen” on his locker. A sticker was put in his workplace that said, “Honk if you’re gay.” [emphasis mine]