update: is my future manager a bigoted jerk?

Remember the letter-writer last week who saw her future manager’s bigoted Twitter account and wanted to ask not to report to him? Here’s the update.

Thanks for publishing and answering my letter. I actually already have an update!

I ended up talking to Willow (my interim manager) about it the day after I emailed you. I wasn’t planning on it but we were meeting about something else and I brought it up when we were done. Turns out she’d also googled Xander, saw his offensive tweets, and had already gone directly to Giles, who’d escalated things to HR.

Willow told me that our company always vets candidates’ socials and that Giles told her that Xander’s twitter account apparently never showed up during the search. They suspect that he locked it down during his job search and made it public again after getting his offer. She also told me that Giles had mentioned wanting to confirm the account was actually Xander’s before taking any next steps. This was all late last week.

This morning, our department got an email from Giles that said that Xander wouldn’t be joining our company after all. I don’t know the details but can assume that we pulled his offer. So I won’t have to work under this man!

Also, since some commenters were speculating, I can confirm that Xander’s tweets weren’t just conservative political stances that I disagreed with. Many of the things he regularly retweeted are blatantly racist, misogynist, and homophobic — there’s very little nuance there.

Thanks for publishing my letter!

{ 273 comments… read them below }

  1. Hlao-roo*

    Thanks for the update! I’m glad your company took all the right steps and that you won’t have to work for Xander!

    1. L'étrangère*

      Congratulations! It’s so much easier to prevent getting someone like that rather than deal with the fallout when he’s actually there.. And I’m sure everyone concerned is feeling a lot more secure in your company

  2. Filthy Vulgar Mercenary*

    I am glad to hear this. I just discovered that some members of my family hold some similar views and I am going through the ‘anger’ stage of grief about that, so this is reassuring to hear. Kind of like one action canceling out another, even though in reality I know it’s not at all the same thing.

    1. Cat's Paw for Cats*

      I have been through this myself and wish you well. Luckily for me, it’s not my immediate family, but it is still painful.

      1. Filthy Vulgar Mercenary*

        Thank you. I’m noticing this is really taking a toll on me, I think because I associate their responses with invalidation of me as a child and not protecting me from abuse. makes for a good therapy topic :)

        I’m trying to engage with them using the techniques in My Grandmother’s Hands by Resmaa Menakem (and noticing my own responses too) to try to keep the engagement productive (I have more social capital with them than most others who thinks as I do). But man it’s infuriating.

        How do you deal with it?

        1. Cat's Paw for Cats*

          Well, frankly, I’ve largely cut them out of my life. We stopped getting together during covid and I just haven’t gone out of my way to keep in touch. I send a generic note card to a few from time to time, but that’s pretty much it. Thank god they were cousins and aunts and uncles rather than parents, brothers and sisters.

          1. Filthy Vulgar Mercenary*

            Yeah that makes sense. I wouldn’t want to continue associating with them either. Sounds like you’re doing benign neglect almost. Very valid approach.

            For me it’s a parent and two siblings. I already don’t have a ton of contact with them unless I initiate it, because of Reasons, and this latest revelation makes me just want to let that relationship die off and find another parent to ‘adopt’ me. My spouse’s parents are amazing but in terrible health and I guess it feels like losing all my parents at the same time.

            1. Cat's Paw for Cats*

              I’m sorry to hear that. I hope you can find a group of people who become your unofficially adopted family. I know many people who have and went on the have a happy life.

        2. ferrina*

          Hugs and love! I’m so sorry!
          I had a parent that I’ve gone low contact with for very good reasons. I live on the other side of the country, so it’s easy to not engage or ‘forget’ to call (and it’s amazing how any time he brings up certain topics, something is burning in the oven or the dog needs to go out or aliens abduct me).

          I also recommend the YouTube channel of Patrick Teahan- he’s a professional who works around topics of trauma in childhood and healing from that. His videos have helped me a lot.

          1. infopubs*

            Here to second the recommendation for Patrick Teahan! Sending healing vibes to all of us that need to hear his messages.

        3. Jackalope*

          I don’t know if this helps, but… I have family who have views in the same vein. I want to stay in touch to them, as we’ve always been emotionally close (although geographically distant). My general solution has been to avoid these topics of conversation as much as possible, which is easier because we don’t see each other in person a time because of geography. I was vehement and outspoken with them when I was younger. I said my piece, they said theirs. We probably won’t change each other’s minds at this point. Sooo.. deal the cards and tell me about the latest Sportsball game!

  3. Elle Woods*

    This is a great update! So glad for your sake, OP, and that of your coworkers that you don’t have to work for Xander.

  4. Dust Bunny*

    They suspect that he locked it down during his job search and made it public again after getting his offer.

    Yeah, this wouldn’t surprise me at all.

    1. Aspiring Chicken Lady*

      And yet, what does that say about his beliefs? That he KNOWS that they’re terrible enough that people won’t want to see them, and that he DECIDED TO HAVE THEM ANYWAY rather than to consider whether or not it is a good idea to be a terrible person in the long run.

      Glad he got shown the door.

      1. Peanut Hamper*

        Came here to say this. If you don’t have anything to hide, why worry?

        and that he DECIDED TO HAVE THEM ANYWAY rather than to consider whether or not it is a good idea to be a terrible person

        Yes, this is it precisely. This isn’t about having different views on taxation or government; this is about deciding that some of your fellow human beings are not worthy of being treated with dignity and respect.

        1. Bee*

          I mean, there’s plenty of valid reasons to lock your social media during a job search – do potential employers need to know I’m obsessed with an obscure tv show that went off the air years ago? Absolutely not, I’m a weirdo in my own time, they don’t need to preemptively decide I’m ~not a cultural fit~ based on the harmless things I do for fun. But there’s privacy and then there’s hiding, and this stuff is absolutely fireable, particularly for a manager! I kind of can’t believe he made it public again.

            1. Quoth the Raven*

              You would (not) be surprised about the things people say when they think they’re safe from consequences, and how many people think others share their bigotry.

              I’m Mexican, but for whatever reason people tend to read me as American or German. The amount of racist crap that has been casually said in front of me because people think I won’t have a problem with it would not surprise you (but also “It’s totally not you!”), and it always make me feel unsafe because what are they going to do when they find out I’m “one of those”?

              1. Bryce*

                I’ve gotten those as well. Yeah, “actually I’m one of those people you’re currently ranting about” sounds like it would be satisfying in theory but there’s no way in heck I’m doing that to someone who’s already working themselves into a rage.

              2. Mongrel*

                They have an exclusionary world view.

                Outside of their, loosely defined, ‘set’ everyone is bad until they prove themselves and they’re given “One of the good ones” passes, which can be revoked capriciously at any time.

          1. Anonopolis*

            Exactly. I locked mine when I started job searching because I didn’t feel my leftist politics needed to be part of the vetting process, even though I wasn’t applying anywhere it would be an issue.

          2. Constance Lloyd*

            Look, if potential employers don’t want to hear me rant about the absolute tragedy that was the cancellation of Pushing Daisies, they simply aren’t a place I want to work!


        2. goddessoftransitory*

          Perhaps he feels it’s worth it to feel put upon and victimized, as seems to be the trend a la Scott Adams–sure, I’ve ruined my life but at least I completely failed to prove any kind of valid point and can whine about it! Go me!

      2. The Person from the Resume*

        Nah! He thinks that the woke idiots discriminate against straight white men like himself so just in case there are some in the new company he’ll hide his views during the hiring process.

        I’m not defending him, but I am saying it’s very unlikely that he, or anyone for that matter, knows/understands/acknowledges their beliefs are terrible and make them a terrible person. When people disagree and tell him he’s terrible, he thinks they’re stupid or dumb or don’t understand the real world.

        1. Keeley Jones, The Independent Woman*

          Yep. And now I’m sure he’s telling everyone he was canceled by the woke mob and shouting FJB. I don’t need to know him personally to know this guy.

          1. Three Flowers*

            Yep. And the probability that he is one of those people who don’t understand that the First Amendment excuses you from *jail time*, not consequences, is approximately 110%

        2. MurpMaureep*

          Yeah I’ve worked with people like this – they feel zero guilt about their views but also know that they are not popular in certain circles. Xander probably thought he was pulling one over on “The Libs” by hiding his true beliefs and then getting the job offer. I’m actually surprised he didn’t Tweet about it!

        3. Cat's Paw for Cats*

          “Nah! He thinks that the woke idiots discriminate against straight white men like himself so just in case there are some in the new company he’ll hide his views during the hiring process.”

          This. It’s like conspiracy theorists. They are so certain of their beliefs they entertain no possibility that they might be mistaken.

        4. Lily*

          “When people disagree and tell him he’s terrible, he thinks they’re stupid or dumb or don’t understand the real world.”

          My god, I’ve met this person, worked with them, am related to them. Sigh…
          Zero self-awareness, zero reflection, zero room in their belief system for anyone that doesn’t agree with them 100%…

      3. bighairnoheart*

        Don’t get be wrong, this guy sucks. But, I’ve locked down my social media accounts during job searches too, even though I don’t have any abhorrent beliefs on display there (and I’m sure other people fall into the same boat). I just don’t want a potential employer taking my vacation photos and weird taste in memes into consideration during the hiring process. Also, if I want to vent on Twitter about the terrible interview I just had, I definitely don’t want that employer to see it!

        But just to reiterate, I cannot be clear about it enough, this guy sucks!

        1. ArchivesPony*

          which is why I have a professional twitter and a personal twitter and my personal twitter that unless you know me can’t be tied to me. It’s not my real name, no email/location/identifying details are listed and pic and header are generic pictures. You can tell my profession but my profession is pretty large.

          1. rat pants*

            +1 I feel like everything I was ever taught about internet usage (don’t give out any identifying info) has flown right out the window. For my introverted self, it’s baffling.

            1. goddessoftransitory*

              It’s this weird parallel stream of “thinking the internet is real life” and “not realizing the internet IS REAL LIFE.”

              It’s never been easier in human history to metaphorically plug one’s ears and sing LA LA LA about any and every thing they don’t agree with, while finding others in the virtual nooks and crannies who totally support and encourage the worst and most filthy impulses, egging group members on to be more and more terrible and enjoy that sweet, sweet shot of approval.

              But when the actual world, which does not agree with those stances in the least, says actually you’re fired and I’m divorcing you, people flip out in genuine hurt and astonishment that consequences can really still exist, and touch their lives.

            2. Lydia*

              For me, it’s just too difficult to keep track of more than one account, so none of my identifying features are on my Twitter account and my FB account is locked to only friends seeing it, and that list of friends is carefully curated. And even still, the most inflammatory stuff is saved for in-person amongst friends only. :)

            3. STAT!*

              Agreed! I don’t even have any social media accounts. Which in a way is kind of identifying, maybe??

              (Okay I know these comments pages count, but I mean the curated kinds like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn etc.)

          2. Appletini*

            This so much this. I would never put my political views on anything my employers could see. My Facebook is basically empty. My online journals don’t have my legal cane on them

            Compartmentalization will set you free

        2. Bunny Lake Is Found*

          I think there is a difference between having a fairly run of the mill social media presence and still locking it down because you aren’t 100% sure there aren’t any pictures of you clearly drunk or acting ridiculous with your friends vs. having a social media presence that is aggressively presenting a position of being “anti” certain protected classes of people. That person would be hiding information that, had the company been made aware, would be justifiably concerned that person is a walking HR violation waiting to happen. By contrast, employers know you have a life outside of work, but most people still wouldn’t want future employers discussing if they think you are a good decision maker while having the photo of you doing a keg stand at your 21st birthday in their minds.

      4. Zombeyonce*

        It’s a pretty bold choice to have views like this and know they could impact your job search and still post them under your actual name with a recognizable photo.

      5. Dust Bunny*

        Of course that’s what it says.

        I mean, (I don’t have a Twitter) but I keep my real name off a lot of my social media because it’s an obscure name and if you find it, it’s definitely me, but it’s because my social media is mostly childish and awkward and I don’t need potential employers finding out about my plastic horse habit, not because of stuff like this.

        1. Cosplayer Life*

          Yeah, I used to hang out with a guy who got fired from a job after his boss Googled his rather unique name, discovered his cosplay habit because there were a bunch of photos of him in his costumes online, and decided this meant he was some kind of pervy predator. He’d worked at that job with no issues for over a decade.

          For the record, his costumes weren’t racy and raunchy. He didn’t even dress up as female characters (“crossplay” still gets a bad rap, grumbles the enby who dresses up as male and female characters–not a lot of enbies to cosplay out there, sadly). I recall his biggest costumes at the time were Tenchi Masaki, Miroku (InuYasha), and Ken from Street Fighter. Look ’em up–not exactly known for wearing controversial outfits.

          I don’t need or want my current or future coworkers asking me why I’m dressed up as a “cartoon character,” why I’m playing a Digimon video game, or why I’m squeeing over Diane Duane’s YA novels about kid and animal wizards, so I keep my social media locked down and under screen names no one outside my friend circles knows about.

          1. I have RBF*

            Yeah, I keep my fannish stuff under my fandom pseudonym. I am a little bit political in both, with the idea that conservative workplaces would pass on me if they looked up my real name twitter.

            But they don’t need to know about Diane Duane, Mercedes Lackey, Anne McCaffrey, Seanan McGuire, David Weber, Robert Heinlein, J.R.R Tolkein or any of the other authors I read.

            1. allathian*

              I’m not on social media at all, although I still grieve the death of the vast majority of online forums. Seems to me that only the huge ones have managed to survive. I love the anonymity, and anonymous doesn’t have to mean badly moderated. The ones I hang out at the most are very well moderated and posters follow the rules or leave, either voluntarily or by force. Occasional trolls are dealt with pretty quickly.

              But even so, I use allathian only on advice blogs and other nicks in my various fandoms.

      6. Van Wilder*

        I’m so fascinated by this. Like, as soon as he got his offer, he’s like “now I can go back to being proud of these terrible beliefs publicly associated with my name.”

          1. Lydia*

            I love that assumption because it really illustrates how stupid and immune to consequences people like him think they are. As if at any point someone couldn’t check in like the OP did and find out he was atrocious and fire him. Sir, that’s not how it works.

            1. metadata minion*

              I think it depends on just how strong of a reaction he realized employers might have. I would lock my social media while job searching and unlock it once I had an offer (well, in theory — I’d probably actually unlock it six months later after I realized it had been locked all that time) because while I would want to avoid any unnecessary bias from interviewers, I really hope any institution I’d want to work for wouldn’t pull a job offer based on my Twitter feed.

          2. Where’s the Orchestra?*

            I bet that’s exactly what was going thru his brain when he made the platform live again so fast. They cleared me already – and nobody is going to recheck.

            But yeah – glad he got googled by somebody he was going to work with after the jobs check of his social media accounts.

    2. ZSD*

      And if he was smart enough to lock it down during his job search, why wasn’t he smart enough to keep it locked down for another few weeks? I mean, I very much believe that he did indeed lock it for just the duration of his job search, but…not quite as smart as he intended to be.

    3. Where’s the Orchestra?*

      The fact that he locked it down for long enough to get thru a vetting process means he definitely knew what he was posting is a problem. That makes me feel not bad at all that his offer got pulled – which is very different from a judgement lapse accidental retweet.

      1. Lydia*

        Someone said previously that it’s not necessarily the case that he knew he was awful, and his bad beliefs would be a problem. A lot of people lock down their accounts during job searches for a lot of reasons. If you’re a rampant socialist trying to get work in a conservative industry, you might lock it down. If you’re vocal about trans rights and are trying to get a teaching job in one of a growing number of states, you might lock it down. Not everyone is trying to hide their atrociousness; sometimes it’s for valid protection, too.

        1. ariel*

          +1, plenty of folks with marginalized identities or with progressive politics have good reasons to lock down accounts when job hunting or really all the time.

    4. goddessoftransitory*

      I don’t think Patrick understands the word “social” as in regards to “social media.”

  5. Keymaster of Gozer*

    What a great result! I’m very glad that bigot didn’t get the job in the end :)

    (I bet he’s ranting online about how he’s so persecuted blah blah freedom of speech, instead of actually taking the opportunity to think about changing his attitudes)

      1. Cat's Paw for Cats*

        Yeah, I love the way people complain about cancel culture as if shunning because of unacceptable behavior hasn’t been standard in all societies since we crawled out of the primordial slime. And as if they themselves didn’t do it regularly.

        1. Generic Name*

          Yes, there’s a certain irony in being the type of person who would disown a child for being gay who also complains about losing a job for their chosen beliefs.

        2. Where’s the Orchestra?*

          And that they aren’t all too willing to cancel those whose opinions they feel are abhorrent. They only scream about cancel culture when they are the ones being canceled.

    1. YeppyYeps*

      Yeah he can shut right up over his claims of persecution over free speech. No one told him to make his twitter public again. He did that, because he WANTS people to know. He is not smart enough to lock it down, and then dumb enough to unlock it without knowing that people at your new job will look you up. Narcissism and a bigot – lovely.

    2. Filthy Vulgar Mercenary*

      Yep. The employer has freedom of speech too. Everything they do or don’t do sends a message, spoken or not. I’m glad they chose to exercise their speech the way they did.

  6. Peanut Hamper*

    That was quick!

    Good job on following up with Willow, OP, and hats off to your company for dealing with this quickly. Wow!

  7. Critical Rolls*

    Once again, the LW has correctly identified what they’re looking at despite the speculation in the comments. Very glad you got a good outcome, AND you didn’t have to stick your neck out, AND your company apparently did the right thing!

  8. the cat's ass*

    Bravo to your company. Sounds like this guy, as well as being a POS, was smart enough to know that his ideas might hinder his job search and locked down accordingly. I’m surprised he’s not back on the bird app whining about his 1st Amendment rights. Folks don’t get that “First Amendment Rights” for those in the US means the government can’t come after you (unless you’re treasonous or seditious) but there can be repercussions everyplace else. Maybe just not be a racist, homophobic misogynist?

    1. HailRobonia*

      Your comment is spot on. The same people who complain about being “censored” for their views are often the same ones who feel that businesses should also be allowed to discriminate against certain categories of people with impunity (like the unfortunately common “wedding venue or bakery won’t do business for a same-sex couple” situation.)

  9. baffled*

    So sick of people conflating ‘politics’ with their personal vileness. If your ‘political views’ involve bigotry (to use a polite term) then you deserve all negative reactions & outcomes decent folks heap upon you. Politics is a process for hashing out good governance among a diverse population, not for ushering in a new reich and assaulting/eliminating ‘others’.

    1. 1-800-BrownCow*

      Yes, “politics” and the right their “religious views”, I’m so tired of those excuses for one’s bigotry.

      1. Michelle Smith*

        My parents have deeply bigoted religious views. They were always gainfully employed until retirement because they kept those views to themselves and did not have social media accounts. And as far as I can tell, they treated members of the public they worked with/for with respect, regardless of what they said about people in private at home.

        Would I prefer them to not be bigots? Yes, obviously. Particularly since their brand of bigotry directly implicates me and makes having a normal relationship with them impossible. But I’m okay with people having abhorrent views if they keep them to themselves and don’t actively try to push them on other people.

        1. baffled*

          My maga neighbors think they are delightful people who just want everyone to find god and be saved, even if it means using their votes/voices to strip millions of fundamental rights.
          They believe that as long as they use polite words their actions are excused, and that ‘yelling’ aka rightfully protesting injustice etc, is proof that ‘libs’ are lawless animals.

          Anyway… /rant over

        2. Onward*

          “But I’m okay with people having abhorrent views if they keep them to themselves and don’t actively try to push them on other people.”

          People’s abhorrent views will almost always affect other people, whether you think it does or not.

          That person votes with their abhorrent views, they give (or don’t give) people jobs/promotions/raises with those abhorrent views, they donate money with those abhorrent views… Rarely do they actually “keep them to themselves.”

        3. Appletini*

          None of us are psychic as far as I know anyway. People aren’t judged for what they think and never tell anyone but for what they communicate and act on

          1. Where’s the Orchestra?*

            Yup – you confine you thoughts to your head and act like a professional at work – we’re fine as coworkers. Because thought police leads to me wanting to say “let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” None of us are perfect – but if you keep it contained and we can’t see it at work – that is the definition of a work self.

            1. Appletini*

              I think I didn’t make myself clear. “Thought policing” is impossible because we cannot know what someone thinks unless they tell us. When they tell us, that’s an action, indicative of future actions.

              I cannot know how many silent bigots I’ve run into, though I appreciate their silence. Having had various jobs that made me part of the furniture, I sincerely doubt that most people can be silent bigots. They will promulgate their bigotry in talking and then go ahead and act on it. Someone who’s already talking up their bigotry can’t be counted as silent.

        4. 1-800-BrownCow*

          Michelle, I have family with deeply bigoted religious views that they keep to themselves, but I can promise you, even though they “act respectful” to members of public, their views still affects treatment, even if not obvious. I know for a fact that those family members (who have since passed away), would tip less to someone they were bigoted against. Or they wouldn’t use a certain business or service again if they learned an owner or manger didn’t meet their acceptance, despite having no issue with the business or service itself. They never did state their bigotry as reasons, there was always another reason, but when one pays close attention long enough, it becomes obvious. So just because someone doesn’t voice their bigotry doesn’t mean they don’t act upon it. They do and just make it less obvious. I can guarantee your parents do the same even if you don’t notice it.

          And I have to say, I don’t know how someone can be okay with people having abhorrent views if they keep them to themselves. That’s not okay at all.

      2. baffled*

        Yeah, def same with religious views. American democracy will never get it right as long as religion can be used as a shield and a weapon.

        1. Weaponized Pumpkin*

          “When Fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross.”
          – Sinclair Lewis

          1. Kit*

            He wasn’t wrong! I mean, there were some fine details he missed, but faulting him for not being able to predict, say, the Qanon ‘Shaman’ is a bit much when none of us predicted that either and we’re alive now.

            (Yes I know it wasn’t the first fascist movement in the US and I’m sure it shan’t be the last, assuming the US lasts long enough to have another go-round at the wheel.)

    2. Meep*

      I hate things like reproductive health care, equality, treating people with compassion, etc are even considered “political”. But this is what the Right has decided.

      1. Cat's Paw for Cats*

        I had a woman recently tell me that racial equality is highly political and not a topic for polite conversation.

        1. Meep*

          I mean the first part is true. The second part, I suppose, is also true. If you are so opposed to racial equality it makes you uncomfortable.

        2. DJ Abbott*

          It has become so polarized and inflammatory since 2020 that a person can’t say anything without getting a lot of hostility, and a big argument, and a pile-on… I can only discuss it with my friends, and we rarely do because we all know what page we are on. With anyone else, including this commentariat, it’s instant pile-on.
          So it’s true, things don’t stay polite for long when this topic comes up.

    3. Dark Macadamia*

      Personally I think it’s hilarious that LW was like “he’s racist, sexist, and oppressive” and people thought “hey now, that just sounds like a Republican” was somehow a good response

      1. JB*

        Sounds like a perfectly logical conclusion.

        A racist probably belongs to the racist party. It’s not rocket science.

  10. Radioactive Cyborg Llama*

    It’s messed up that people were devils advocating the LW in the prior column’s comments. Besides the whole “believe the LW” thing, and the whole “company can decide who it wants to associate with” thing, being a woman and knowing your new boss retweets MRA shit is a completely reasonable cause for alarm. It was an entirely rational action to ask not to be assigned to a man who holds a grudge against women

    1. Esprit de l'escalier*

      For a moment my mind went blank on what MRA stands for so I googled it. Now I now — it isn’t magnetic resonance angiography!

      1. Hlao-roo*

        Spelling it out for others who may not know: MRA is Men’s Rights Activist. And not “men’s rights” as in “men deserve paid parental leave, too” (they do), “men’s rights” as in “women should be subservient to men or the world isn’t fair!”

        1. Fishsticks*

          My friend’s ex-husband started off a “men deserve paid parental leave” MRA-type, but would acknowledge that it was an equity issue and not anything women had done. Within five years, he was full on a reddit-radicalized “feminism ruined America” despite claiming to be an “independent libertarian free thinker”. He was genuinely furious that my friend expected him to be an equal partner in their marriage.

          He is her ex now for a reason.

          She was always a very strident vocal supporter of equality/equity/justice, etc. Sometimes it seems like he thought he could just wear her down and was genuinely startled when she just left and restarted her life without the person who made her miserable.

      2. goddessoftransitory*

        Google “Scott Adams” the creator of Dilbert. His latest shitstorm is by no means his first.

        1. Where’s the Orchestra?*

          Oh no – I quit reading him decades ago, it’s hard to read and find enjoyment when you know the artist finds half of the population to be a waste of air.

    2. hey y'all*

      I totally agree, this man would have been a walking EEO suit waiting to happen. But I’m glad the company authenticated ownership of the account before canning him. It’s good due diligence when dealing with social media since pictures can be so easily lifted electronically.

    3. MEH Squared*

      Agreed. As someone who is a minority several times over, no benefit of the doubt was needed for Xander. Congrats, OP, that you don’t have to work under this guy! And good on your company for doing the right thing.

    4. Eyes Kiwami*

      But MY views are conservative, and if HE can get canceled for not being far left enough, what does that say about me?? Please reassure me that I am one of the good ones!! /s

  11. Justin*

    I bet he’s tweeting now about being CANCELED BY THE WOKE LEFT and that’s fine, I love that for him.

    1. Some Dude*

      No, I’m sure he has had a come to jesus moment and is rethinking his bigoted views.

      JK he seems himself totally as the victim here and it is just reinforcing his horrible views.

      1. Magenta*

        It is unlikely that losing a job, which is likely to have a large financial impact and major negative implications for them and their family will soften their views.

        It makes sense to not want to work with someone, I can understand why the company pulled the offer. But this is a real person who is now having a really bad time.

        Of course they will have their views entrenched, they have had bad things happen because of their opinions. Discussion and humanising the groups the person hates is a much better approach when it comes to changing hearts and minds.

        1. Fishsticks*

          I think people react badly to this line of thought because it implies that there is some responsibility on the part of the people he would hurt to put up with him in the hopes of “humanizing” him and changing his mind, when lived experience suggests that rarely happens, and instead the people he hurts just suffer.

          It would be really really good if it worked more often, I agree with that. But I struggle to see the point in subjecting people to it in the hopes that it will fix something that is broken in a man like that.

          1. Bunny Lake Is Found*

            This. I too recognize the desire to believe this train of thought. Basically that the person’s hate really comes from fear and if they are cared for and supported, they would be less afraid and therefore they could let the hate go.

            Unfortunately, at this point, that fear and hate is likely to be at the core of their lives, their media, their social circle (virtual or IRL). In order to “come to Jesus” they would have to not only give all that up, they would have to be actively against these things. For them, the safer survival choice is to commit harder to the ideology and see challenges to it as challenges to their very being.

            No matter how much love or compassion or empathy we can offer up about the fact Xavier is still a person who still had his job offer rescinded, it will just not be enough to overcome the very human desire to run into the arms of ideologies that tell you “You are right. Those people are wrong and they are punishing you for you being right”.

            Growing up, our school had a former member of the Klan come and talk to us. He told us the moment it changed for him was when he had a child born with Downs Syndrome and was suddenly aware that every person around him believed it would be the right thing to do to kill his kid. That is the kind of thing that makes you capable of seeing the real cost of your hate. Not losing a job offer.

            1. Fishsticks*

              Like Meghan McCain suddenly realizing maternity leave matters when she herself had a baby. For some people, they have to personally experience something to even believe the problem exists.

        2. Appletini*

          As Fishsticks said this doesn’t work. I spent a long time trying to be a an “ ambassador” a nonthreatening Black girl reaching out to conservatives. All it got me was a lot of different kinds of pain and I would never recommend another marginalized person sacrifice themselves for someone’s supposed education ever again.

    2. Peanut Hamper*

      It’s funny how “free market” and “free speech” people don’t understand how the “free market” actually works and that “free speech” does not mean “consequence free speech”.

  12. learnedthehardway*

    Hurray for companies that stand up for inclusivity / diversity and that are willing to protect their employees!!

    1. Weaponized Pumpkin*

      What timing! Adams just provided the ultimate example. We could argue where to draw the line with a future employee revealing ignorant or biased opinions, but would anyone argue that what Adams said should be set aside? Would any of the “thought police” commenters stand by that kind of person being hired as a manager (if at all)? Or say that someone who holds these beliefs would be capable of not acting on them in ways that hurt others? Come on.

    2. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

      Hahaha I wanted to comment something like “he should check if Scott is hiring”!

      Just two innocent men, canceled by the leftist thought police, nothing to see here /s

    3. goddessoftransitory*

      Right? I was so happy to see him smacked from here to Sunday, but this guy is also an MRA piece of crap from way, way back. Anybody who was surprised at his latest crapfest was not paying attention at all.

  13. Arctic Willow*

    What surprises me here is that he used his real name and other identifying information. He understood that broadcasting his beliefs will hurt his job search, so why didn’t he just create an anonymous account instead of temporarily locking his profile?

    1. 1-800-BrownCow*

      Probably a narcissist who thinks his beliefs are superior and doesn’t need to hide behind a fake profile. And only locked down his profile temporarily in case there was one person during his job search that would be offended by his superiority-ness so he needed to be cautious until he could reveal his true self that he’s quite proud of, once again.

    2. Meep*

      They all think there is nothing wrong with their opinion and it is the crazy “intolerant woke mob” who should be shamed, sadly.

      1. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

        Yep, if I had a nickel for each time I was told “but everyone says these things behind closed doors, you do too” about some or other piece of bigoted/racist/homophobic drivel.

        1. Fishsticks*

          The amount of awful racist jokes I had to put up with under a previous boss who was protected by the people above him still astounds me. Because they were “good old boys” who had all gone to high school together, they thought I was an absolute killjoy for not finding their racist ‘jokes’ as hilarious as they did.

  14. 1-800-BrownCow*

    I needed this good news, thank you LW!!!

    Totally not the same and the LW’s concerns were certainly much worse, but just today, I was told I’m lucky to not have to face ANY biases or gender issues being the only female in a male dominant role at my company. I was told this by a white, cis-male and all my equivalent colleagues are all white, cis-males. When I tried giving an example of a bias I’ve had to face, this male colleague told me about how he was once treated unfairly because he’s a guy, so it’s not just women who deal with this. Ugh!! I’ve been struggling all day with being upset and angry, so reading this update has help lift my spirits some. There is some good karma, and people, in the world.

    1. mreasy*

      Didn’t you know that being called sexist is just as bad, if not worse, than dealing with sexism? /s I’m sorry you’re going through this. It’s been a perennial for me too.

    2. Anon for this*

      I once had to talk to a police investigator because someone in my workplace (but not a coworker) targeted me for harassment with extremely violent images. The police officer was fairly dismissive and told me that he himself faced harassment “every day of my career” because people are so biased against cops.

      (Luckily his superior was a much better cop who dealt with the issue more appropriately.)

    3. Chief Petty Officer Tabby*

      I could not roll my eyes hard or far enough for that guy. What, did himb not get to… I don’t know, I can’t even think of anything. Maybe not get a chair pulled out for him or something. Guys like that whine about the silliest things.

  15. Minerva*

    What’s sad (not really) is that he will see this as discrimination against white hetero men, when ironically there was no issue with him being a white hetero man*, but there is an issue with him being a bigot.

    *Because these sorts of guys wrongly assume that all white hetero men are secretly as bigoted as they are. It’s been a fascinating thing to witness over the years as the child of biracial household and a WOC married to a hetro white dude.

    1. There You Are*

      Yep. I’m racking my brain trying to come up with a conservative political stance that isn’t just straight-up bigotry (I’m including misogyny under the Bigot Umbrella).

      1. Meep*

        In the old days, it would be a “free and fair market”, I suppose. They really have strayed away from centralized vs localized government as a platform and more towards “re-oppression so I can go back to being a God” since 2001, though.

        1. Meep*

          I want to acknowledge, even then – all policies pre-2001 were steeped in bigotry, even if that wasn’t the intention. They were just less vocally proud about it.

      2. Ask a Manager* Post author

        In my young adulthood, I considered myself a libertarian (honestly partly because I liked the contrarian-ness of it, but also because I’d read Ayn Rand at an impressionable age — big mistake), and at the time I would have said I was liberal on social issues and conservative on fiscal ones, and so I would have named things like lower taxes, a free market, and less government intervention. As I got more life experience, I changed my views and realized how many of those things have consequences that disproportionately harm people who are already marginalized, as well as having disparate impacts by race … but it’s not hard to believe in that stuff without looking more closely at what it really means in practice. (Or at least that was the case during the 90s/early 00s; I do think it would be harder now, given what the right has chosen to identify themselves with.)

        1. RunShaker*

          I didn’t see myself as libertarian but held similar beliefs & at time understood that was Republican’s platform. I was slow to understand for most of my 20s, I did start to question things. And now I would be called bleeding liberal by these kind of people (bigots). I don’t see myself that liberal but I’m definitely don’t associate with the right. So life experience has been huge for me but also willing to be open & explore. It may be me, but it seems for many (not all) as people get older, they become more conservative. This has happened with some in my family plus seeing the intolerance & bigot thinking coming out more so. But then it could be that many in society (politicians, social media, talking heads) feel more comfortable sharing their bigot views.

        2. squirreltooth*

          Ayn Rand’s books are widely distributed to high schools for free, presumably to grab those impressionable readers like you. I also remember there being a number of scholarships available to high schoolers willing to read The Fountainhead or whatever and talk about how great it was; I considered that one myself before I knew Rand’s reputation but presumably decided reading it would cut into my precious time on Fanfiction dot net.

          1. Fluffy Fish*

            A high school teacher gave my very very very liberal daughter Atlas Shrugged saying she thought she’d enjoy it.

            This teacher would have known that she would absolutely not enjoy it but was hoping to influence her.

            I’m pretty sure sure she recycled it but I guarantee you that had she bothered to read it she probably wouldn’t have finished and have added another “famous” person to her list of people who she abhors.

            1. Fishsticks*

              Honestly, I tried to read it as a high schooler and it was one hell of a slog to finish, and I think I made it less than a hundred pages before I decided to think of it like a weird fairy tale about not-quite-humans, because no human talks or acts like the way Ayn Rand wrote humans.

              If I had been given the book by a teacher I think I would have just been really wondering if said teacher had ever read it themselves or if it’s just a “classic” on a list for them.

          2. Mallory Janis Ian*

            I read The Fountainhead for a scholarship essay contest and it ruined my teenage life for a while, until I realized that acting like Howard Roarke was not a way for me to win friends nor influence people. I never did write the essay; I was too affected by the book and just took it to heart and played it out in my personal life instead of writing the essay.

        3. Richard Hershberger*

          The connotation of “libertarian” has changed a lot over the decades. The way Michael Moorcock used it in this classic essay “Starship Stormtroopers” is eye-opening, and it is nearly entirely different from how it is used today. When I was in college *mumble mumble* years ago (full disclosure: Reagan administration), the Libertarian Party was a charmingly quirky side show. I fondly remember the libertarian bookstore with a poster in the window of the Bill of Rights with a red stamp “Void where prohibited by law.” The owner was a crank, but he understood that the Bill of Rights includes more than the second half of the second amendment. Somewhere in the ’90s “libertarian” came to be favored by reactionaries with intellectual pretensions, and who often enjoyed smoking weed. This is pretty much where we are at today. Anyone who self-identifies as “libertarian” votes Republican or, if we are lucky, goes chasing some rabbit such as Ron Paul.

          1. Cat's Paw for Cats*

            Here in the deep south, libertarians are simply reconstituted John Birchers who never forgave the federal government for telling them they had to be nice to black people. I didn’t realize there were any other kind. I’ll have to do some reading.

            1. Stuff*

              Oh, we’re meetin’ at the courthouse at eight o’clock tonight
              You just walk in the door and take the first turn to the right
              Be careful when you get there, we hate to be bereft
              But we’re taking down the names of everybody turning left

              Oh, we’re the John Birch Society, the John Birch Society
              Here to save our country from a communistic plot
              Join the John Birch Society, help us fill the ranks
              To get this movement started we need lots of tools and cranks

          2. Meep*

            I feel like the main problem is it was commandeered by crackpots like Larry Correia* who cannot understand they are not as special as their mommies said they were.

            *Sci-Fi writer who created a whole “libertarian movement” because he wasn’t winning the Hugo Award for his drivel.

            1. Richard Hershberger*

              Even back in the day, there were a lot of No True Scotsmen arguments among self-identified libertarians. When threatened with getting sucked into one, I revert to the “self-identified” language to dodge the sheer tedium.

        4. Kit*

          Libertarian socialism has its place – but then in an ideal world I’d be in a mixed marriage, since I lean heavily libsoc/anarcholibertarian and my husband is traditional-socialism-inclined. In the world that actually exists we’re both Democrats and proud of it, of course, and I had a similar journey to accepting political reality, sans Rand and plus growing up in a very conservative area.

          Then again, I still don’t tire of explaining to people that yes, left-libertarian ideologies exist, and they fall under the anarchist umbrella in fact. (Watching someone attempt to reconcile ‘libertarian,’ ‘anarchist,’ and ‘pro-union’ is positively delightful.)

        5. fgcommenter*

          What do you consider yourself now, if you don’t mind?

          Have you looked into left-libertarianism (which is libertarianism as it is in countries outside the USA, and as it was in the USA before the right-wing redefined it)? It has the same ideas about free markets and government intervention, but also recognizes the market-warping and personal-freedom-undermining effects of power concentrations other than the government, such as businesses and religion.

          1. Ask a Manager* Post author

            I consider myself … annoyed progressive, I guess.

            I don’t think we can solve any of the big problems without government involvement, from climate change to poverty.

            1. fgcommenter*

              I don’t think we can solve any of the big problems without government involvement, from climate change to poverty.

              Nice. I am wary of government power, but have to agree with your assessment. Out of all the power-concentrating entities, it has the best potential of being by and for the people.

        6. Meep*

          Oh 100% agree. I am from Arizona so my beliefs really align with the change in the political climate of Arizona. “Independent but Fiscal Conservative” to “Independent but Liberal in Social Rights”. It is amazing to learn how even when you don’t think you are harming someone how harmful those beliefs are inherently.

        7. I have RBF*

          I didn’t read Ayn Rand. I was a Heinleinian libertarian, which was more “The government shouldn’t enforce the social contract, peers should, and everyone’s responsible for their own conduct.”

          This lasted right up until I was still in college, but with no funding, and since it was post-Reagan there was no social safety net for me because I was young and didn’t have a kid. I damn near ended up homeless, and I was very hungry, too. I outgrew it rather rapidly at that point. (It turned out that without the government to enforce major portions of the social contract, there is no actual social contract.) I still had much more to deprogram myself on matters of race and class, but that’s another story.

          1. goddessoftransitory*

            Oh, Heinlein, I read him in high school! Even then I could see the appeal of the ideas but also wondered exactly how everybody agreed to do XYZ at the same time.

        8. T'Cael Zaanidor Kilyle*

          I, too, was strongly drawn to libertarianism as a young person. Much of the philosophy sounds good on paper, and absolute principles that are easily defined are very appealing to a person who is just figuring our the world and where they fit into it.

          I find that the older I get, the more liberal I get. Seeing conservative ideas get put into practice leads to the realization that they don’t actually work as advertised. And libertarian ideas, while they sometimes lack the overt mean-spiritedness of right-wing conservatism, don’t fare much better.

          1. Moonstone*

            I’ve always been extremely liberal and the older I get the stronger those beliefs have become. I usually joke that I’m so far to the left I’m basically a communist ;)

            I remember in college someone told me that old line about if you’re not a liberal at 20, you don’t have a heart; if you’re not a conservative at 40, you don’t have a brain. It always pissed me off because I was just as steadfast in my beliefs then as I am now, if not more so, and I couldn’t fathom becoming conservative as I got older. I’m in my 40s now and there is no way in hell I’ll ever be anything other than a progressive.

        9. SociallyLiberalFiscallyConservative*

          Same here, although I do still think there needs to be some fiscal sanity when evaluating policies and feel that people who disregard that entirely are doing the ideas/goals they support a disservice by making them easier for some people to dismiss as unrealistic and also through terrible marketing/slogans that make it easy to misunderstand or, worse, misrepresent. I know people who’ve gone the other way because of this despite being socially liberal their entire lives – they think everyone else went crazy. Not having a clear set of agreed upon facts does not help either.

          1. Appletini*

            “Fiscal sanity” always seems to mean shutting down Head Start programs rather than buying a couple fewer Air Force jets.

      3. Some Dude*

        I think being pro-gun, against taxation and burdensome regulation aren’t inherently bigoted, nor is seeing the state as something that needs to be reigned in. But especially in the last five years the right wing of this country has pretty openly embraced bigotry and hatred of the other as a way to get people outraged enough to vote for conservatives. One of the things that really frustrates me is how successful they are. You will hear some complain about our slide into authoritarianism and the rights increasing violent and anti-democratic bent, but there is so much more noise about whether woke culture has gone to far or hand wringing about cancel culture or hormone blockers, as if it is worth living in a fascist state so long as we don’t have to call our kid’s friend “they.”

        1. Cat's Paw for Cats*

          I completely agree. I used to know conservatives who were moderate, rational people even though I disagreed with them on policy. I just don’t see those people anymore. I believe they have been propagandized to the point of preferring a fascist state if they can’t maintain power in an increasingly diverse democracy. And I never in a million years would have seen that coming.

        2. There You Are*

          In my experience, the people who are pro-gun are pro-guns-in-white-people’s-hands-only.

          The people who are against taxation aren’t against taxation to fund military spending or corporate handouts, but are against taxation funding anything that helps non-white, non-straight, non-male, and/or non-wealthy people.

          The people who are against regulation aren’t against it when it’s, say, environmental regulations that keep a factory near their homes from poisoning their personal well water, but suddenly think regulation is evil if it means companies have to take measures to protect vulnerable and/or minority communities.

          The people who want to “reign in the state” see things like the New Deal — where millions of non-wealthy Americans were able to live better lives after the governmental changes than before — as terrible because it helped “undeserving” people (i.e., non-white, non-male, non-wealthy, non-extremist-Christians).

          There’s bigotry underlying every single conservative fiscal policy.

          1. MEH Squared*

            All of this. The ideas may not be bigoted on the face of it, but the reasons behind the ideas and the way they are pushed to be implemented are bigoted.

            1. MEH Squared*

              Also, anytime a conservative wants to go off on fiscal responsibility, all I can hear is ‘defense spending’ and laugh.

              1. Fishsticks*

                Right?! “Well welfare and Medicare blah de blah blah-”

                “Okay, Ron, but can you explain why we need to buy seventy-five planes that cost six million dollars apiece that sit in a hangar collecting dust?”

          2. goddessoftransitory*

            Or a train crashes in their town and chemicals are billowing everywhere–these same people cheered at a Trump rally; never mind that his administration lifted the regulations that could have prevented that crash.

        3. Peanut Hamper*

          Yes, but when you realize the origin of some of those policies, you realize that they are rooted in racist and bigoted policies.

          The second amendment came about because the South was afraid of slave revolts. Agricultural work has no overtime and is legal to be paid by piecework (illegal in other areas) because most agricultural workers are people of color.

          The seeds were always there; it’s just that they’ve been heavily watered and fertilized in the past few years.

        4. respectfully, no.*

          Pro gun usually translates into “pro white cis men having military grade guns to oppress everyone else (because no one other than white cis men can have guns”

          1. squirreltooth*

            Now now, cis women can also have guns (because the pink ones aren’t going to buy themselves).

            1. T'Cael Zaanidor Kilyle*

              WHITE cis women can also have guns. Put one in the hands of an “Angry Black Lady” and watch the attitude change…

        5. Meep*

          Alas, a lot of the conservative movement (because there was a shift from Democrats being the conservatives) is rooted in systematic racism so alas it is inherently bigoted. Pro-gun rights, for example, really only benefit white-passing people. If you are BIPOC, owning a gun is more likely to get you killed. Look at how many police officers kill unarmed black men, because they thought they have a gun vs the white mass-shooters who are taken in alive unless they kill themselves. Same goes for anti-regulations (which typically only benefit white people – sweat shops fall into this category) and low taxation.

          1. Elio*

            Yeah and look at what happened when black people did start exercising their second ammendment rights during the Civil Rights era or more recently with Marissa Alexander.

      4. Tom*

        How about lowering onerous business licensure requirements, which disproportionately affect lower-income people and minorities?
        Or thinking that violent crimes, which disproportionately affect lower-income people and minorities, should get more than a slap on the wrist?
        Or understanding that when you make the tax code complicated it disproportionately favors people who can afford accountants?
        (Never mind the fact that lower tax rates don’t necessarily lead to lower tax revenues.)

        Your moral high-horse has a broken leg. I suggest you get off of it.

        1. Cat's Paw for Cats*

          In fairness, those are not conservative positions. Concern for poor people isn’t really a thing for the conservatives here in the deep south. In fact, they despise poor people and think they deserve their own poverty. Perhaps they are different elsewhere. But frankly, looking at the republican platform, I doubt it.

        2. Meep*

          This is laughable. I suggest googling Brock Allen Turner and then get back to me on who is on their moral high horse about “slap on the wrist” crime.

        3. Onward*

          “Or thinking that violent crimes, which disproportionately affect lower-income people and minorities, should get more than a slap on the wrist?”

          Nope – you do not get to cite this as being a benefit to “lower-income people and minorities” who are the most incarcerated population. Black and brown people don’t get slaps on the wrist for these crimes, but rich white people certainly do so you can put that right away.

          Also, the tax code and business licensure changes that conservatives push for are to benefit the rich and wealthy. Don’t pretend like they’re out here advocating for anyone else.

        4. Seconds*

          Tom, you’re so right! You’ve heard just what those communities have asked for!

          They’ve been protesting in the streets, saying, “Away with onerous business licensing requirements!”

          And they’ve been complaining about the justice system : “Longer sentences!”

          And of course, the loudest complaint : “Or tax forms are too complicated! We can’t understand them! Help!”

          Oh, wait—those aren’t the things the communities in question have been complaining about. They must not smart enough to realize what’s really going on. But Tom here can tell them! He’s smarter than they are, because…


          1. Avery*

            I mean, overly-complicated tax forms can be a progressive position. Which is why we should be like most other countries and have the government calculate our taxes for us in all but niche cases, and get rid of loopholes that rich people use to get out of paying their fair share. Yet I doubt that’s what he had in mind…

        5. Fishsticks*

          Can you show me a conservative taxation plan that doesn’t primarily benefit the wealthiest Americans at the expense of the poor? Can you show me how people are getting “a slap on the wrist” when we have the highest prison population as compared to overall population in the world?

    2. baffled*

      I’m 56. Conservatives have always been bigoted in my experience. I’ve never known a single moment where they weren’t assaulting the basic human rights of millions of Americans. Before I was born, as far as I can tell, they have always been anti-woman, anti-gay, anti-BIPOC, pro-nonconsensual religion, etc.

      1. An American(ish) Werewolf in London (ish)*

        Thing is (as Alison says above), reducing taxation means reducing social safety nets and services, which disproportionately affects the most vulnerable. Reducing the size of the government affects regulations and regulatory bodies that enforce such regulations that are there, such as clean air and water, which disproportionately affects the most vulnerable. A free market without strong regulation means that employees have FAR fewer rights, and the employees who are often most affected are, you guessed it, disproportionately the most vulnerable (think about the reports from Amazon employees).

        I am sad that even ‘reasonable’ conservatives (who do not spout vitriol) cannot (and/or will not) see beyond their own front doors.

        Even when the right are NOT spewing racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic (etc) vitriol, their policies and views certainly affect those most at need, well, disproportionately.

      2. Meep*

        I meant it wasn’t blatantly their main platform. Before 2001, they were hiding it behind other policies that seemed “good”. lol

    3. TM*

      Just a general comment about this thread: I believe that these kinds of attitudes push people further to the right.

      1. VintageLydia*

        So pointing out the bigotry and main-stream politics will cause people to become more bigoted? Like out of spite?

      2. Cat's Paw for Cats*

        Not really. People move to the right because they fear the inevitable loss of status and privilege that inevitably comes with true equality. And no one gives up power gracefully. Even if it’s power they never should have had in the first place.

        1. Moderate Democract from a swing state*

          I am one as is everyone I know!


          Moderate Democrat from a swing state

          1. JB*

            “If we point out that bank robbers are bank robbers, more people will be pushed into robbing banks!”

            Makes no damned sense.

          2. Fishsticks*

            So when you heard that bigotry was bad, it made you… more bigoted? Or what exactly do you mean by this? I’m asking genuinely. In what way are you “more right” as a result of having something pointed out as being bad that the right wing of politics believes in than you were before?

            1. TM*

              These replies are just proving my point. You don’t even attempt to see the other side, you just write them off.

              Do you believe that almost half the country’s voters are either bigoted or ignorant?

              This superior, holier than thou attitude is what pushes people away.

              You want names? How did the 2016 election happen?

              (I’m right-leaning, not very right, a woman and a minority)

              1. Fishsticks*

                I’m not really writing you off. I’m trying to ask how hearing “this viewpoint reflects serious bigotry” makes someone more bigoted, rather than giving them cause to reconsider that mindset.

                I was raised in a deeply ‘unspoken racism is the way’ part of the Midwest. I held a lot of very bigoted assumption that I had never considered because they were entrenched in my landscape. Having those bigotries pointed out to me caused me to take a closer look at them and begin to really look at what I had taken for granted and realize how many of those things caused genuine harm to individuals, even things that seemed ‘harmless’ or like just a ‘political belief’. So people who claim that having the same thing happen to them makes them just run further away from understanding is terribly confusing to me.

                1. TM*

                  The reply wasn’t directed specifically at you. It was response to all the replies to my original comment.

                  Thanks for respectfully engaging, we need more of it :)

                  Now to answer your question.
                  First of all I said pushed to the right, not become more bigoted. The right and bigoted aren’t interchangeable. The assumption alone that if you’re on the right then your bigoted, that alone pushes people away.

                  How would you define bigot? Definitions are important before we can have a meaningful discussion.

                  BTW there are minorities that are on the right, would you say they are bigoted?

                  To a lot of people the left feels very intolerant, if people on the left can’t take a look at themselves and understand their flaws and why people feel this way, then they will only continue to push others to the right.

                2. Fishsticks*

                  @TM – sorry for the delay and I get if you don’t check back on this, no hard feelings on that! I had a… wild stressful night and forgot entirely.

                  “BTW there are minorities that are on the right, would you say they are bigoted?” – eh, there is a difference between ‘the right’ and voting Republican policy positions. My mom is right-wing, but she hasn’t voted for a Republican presidential candidate since 2012 because of how thoroughly awful they are and continue to be.

                  But if you’re asking me “can a POC be bigoted”, yes, absolutely. They can be transphobic or homophobic and vote in ways that cause harm to those marginalized groups out of bigotry. A gay man can be racist, etc. Of course minorities can be bigoted, and of course those can be reflected in their votes, and voting for legislation that actively does harm to marginalized groups (say, voting for anti-trans bathroom bills) is bigoted regardless.

                  ” if people on the left can’t take a look at themselves and understand their flaws and why people feel this way, then they will only continue to push others to the right.”

                  “I am radicalized into increasingly dangerous authoritarian policy positions because people are angry that I vote for a party that supports increasingly dangerous authoritarian policy positions” is… that’s not the responsibility of the people you dislike, or who you find difficult to deal with. That’s on you for responding by choosing not to look closer at the policy positions and see where the fear is coming from.

                  For example: Someone who is anti-abortion might argue that they’re not sexist, they just value life. But anti-abortion laws kill living women. Full stop. Women die when abortion is illegal. So saying “well, now I’m even MORE anti-abortion!” because women are telling you “what you are voting for will kill some of us” (not you specifically, sorry, this whole example is very ‘general you’) is not the fault of the women trying to tell you that they may very well suffer because of your political position.

                3. TM*

                  Thanks for taking your time to reply.

                  I disagree with many of your points, but this is a longer discussion and we can go on and on, I guess we can leave it at that :)

              2. Appletini*

                Aafter 2016 I definitely feel that half my fellow voters are at best ignorant and at worst gleefully bigoted. An example of conservative bigotry— Idaho Tennessee Utah and Mississippi have all passed laws criminalizing trans peoples ability to live their lives and transition. There are no medical or societal reasons to do this. Just cruelty and bigotry.

                Besides the whole idea that liberals are responsible for podding conservatives off so that conservatives favor bigotry enshrined in law is just respectability politics. And respectability politics don’t work. There is no way for me as a queer black woman to behave so well I convince bigots to stop hating me

                Also to be honest I have seen many POC throw other POC under the proverbial bus for personal gain so just being a person of color doesn’t mean you’re an ally to the rest of us

                Finally “ the left is seen as intolerant” is hilarious hypocrisy from a social movement who have held it as policy that people deserved to die of AIDS , who are working on making mifopristone impossible to get in the US and who have threatened Floridian teachers with felony convictions for having the “wrong” books to the point where teachers are clearing out their classrooms. In my personal life it has been conservatives who told me I deserved assault and should be forcibly sterilized and liberals who told me that it is fine to be queer and I have the right to control my own body. The intolerance I’ve dealt with has vastly been from the Right

  16. Lizy*

    I will never understand why people can’t just be nice. I REALLY can’t understand why people go out of their way to be mean asshats. It boggles the mind….

    But I’m glad you don’t have to work with him.

  17. Emily*

    I am sure I have worked with men who have negative perspectives about me as a woman in this technical field because I see what men write anonymously. Fine, whatever. But hide your terrible beliefs. That’s all I ask. You can either hide your terrible beliefs by not writing about them on the internet, and that’s always a great option for anyone. But, wait! You can also write about them on the internet under a pseudonym, if you can’t bear to keep them to yourself. That’s also an option! (Finally, there’s the option to not have those beliefs at all! But seriously, if you have them, two options for not making me deal with the fact that you have them.)

    1. Barbarella*

      “But seriously, if you have them, two options for not making me deal with the fact that you have them.”

      There is also the option not to ask, or Google in this case. I am veerry cautious about socializing too much with people from, well, anywhere, but definitely work. I know I work with MRAs and racists, not because they have said anything, but bc I understand that any large enough cross-section of people will contain people who I consider to be intolerable. By keeping cautious distance, I am able to avoid dealing with the fact that at least one person who I deal with daily have terrible beliefs. YMMV.

      1. baffled*

        Know your enemy. Better to google and act accordingly than to support bigotry by turning a willfully blind eye.

      2. Appletini*

        That works if they can’t hurt you. Being neither White nor male, I know MRAs and racists can and will hurt me. I can’t just live in ignorance concerning the people around me.

    2. Weaponized Pumpkin*

      On the other hand, a Black friend of mine has told me he doesn’t want them to hide it — that way he knows where they are and where he stands.

      1. I went to school with only 1 Jennifer*

        Right. I’ve seen lots of writing about how it can actually be easier to be Black in the South, because everything is right out there in the open. In other places, it’s all microaggressions and your non-Black friends not believing your lived experiences. (I wish I had cites right now.) I strongly recommend the books by Amber Ruffin and Lacey Lamar. (And get the audio versions if you can, because they’re read by *them*.)

      2. Appletini*

        I guess I would rather they say it than believe it and not say it but still act on it, which I guess are my choices in this society, but it would be nice if they didn’t believe it at all.

    3. Mittens*

      A coworker of mine recently told me that women aren’t as skilled in STEM fields because they lack men’s inherent problem solving skills. I’m a woman. We’re database engineers.

      I’m oddly glad he said that out loud because now I know for sure that I can’t trust him.

  18. Moonlight*

    I bet you’re right that he locked down his accounts. One might think that this would teach him a lesson (like if he’s gotta give it, surely he knows he’s wrong?). While on obviously thrilled that you won’t have to work for him, the crappy thing is that he’s unlikely to change.

    Something I’ve noticed with people “like him” is that they don’t regard their beliefs as wrong: they just think that the liberal/snowflakes/political correctness-police/whatever are “too sensitive” or “can’t handle the truth”. I’ve dealt with people like this who genuinely feel justified in their beliefs and think that myself, and people like me, just can’t take the truth. It’s truly disgusting and alarming. Like I know that I’ve tripped into my own biases so it’s not like I think I’m some flawless paragon of “correctness”, but I’m committed to anti-oppression and intersectional practices so when I find a bias I check it and try to change.

    I’m super curious what happened; like maybe he pull out himself when he realized that his ick would not fly at your org? Or did the org pull the offer? Hopefully it’s the last of it… that said, if I were you, I’d definitely want to follow up and seeing where he ends up (like I’d check his LinkedIn in 6 months or something). But that’s just me; there’s probably draw backs (I think you can search on LinkedIn privately though).

  19. Fluffy Fish*

    Thank you for clarifying as well how vile his posts were. I was taken aback by how many people were either taking a “difference of opinion” stance or people shouldn’t be penalized at work for their private life.

    Vile people who think other human are less than due to race/gender/religion/etc and have no problem sharing these views should ABSOLUTELY find it difficult to exist in society including finding employment.

    1. Onward*

      THIS. I was so disgusted by the comments just shrugging off that this guy was being a total bigot in his free time, thinking it wouldn’t affect his work.

      1. Insert Clever Name Here*

        And the one that kept saying “it’d have to be REALLY BAD” for it to be ok to use it as a reason to not hire someone, but then refused to engage on what exactly would classify as really bad if blatantly misogynist and racist stuff didn’t.

        1. Fluffy Fish*

          To those kind of people goes the appropriate saying of silence/indifference is tacit agreement. Or to be blunt if for those along those lines – ignoring/accepting people who say those things means you are in fact racist, misogynistic, anti-Semitic, (insert discrimination here).

          You either are or you’re not – there is no in between and no fence sitting.

          If that bothers you or you feel a spark of indignant “I am not” then I propose you go ahead and sit with that discomfort for a while and reflect on why yes, you most certainly “are”.

          1. Onward*

            I agree. People advocating for ignoring it or saying “it’s not that bad” are (whether intentionally or unintentionally) fighting on behalf of the bigot and against marginalized communities. As I said in that thread – pretending that he wouldn’t bring those views into managing people is, at best, naive and, at worst, actively harmful.

    2. Skytext*

      Or at the very least, they shouldn’t be put in a position of power over the very people they consider “less than”.

      1. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

        Right – that’s what broke my brain – OK I get it that bigots need to eat too, but can we at least draw the line at not putting them in a position of power over others? And yet people argued against it on that thread. The mind boggles.

    1. I am not here*

      If there were an alternative to YouTube I would leave in a hot second. They allow such racist and misogynistic vitriol on there, it’s unreal.

  20. Sarah M*

    Great news! Having worked with my share of sexist + bigoted bosses over the years, I can seriously relate to your predicament. I’m so glad your company responded the way it did, too. That’s awesome.

  21. Kate*

    Alison, I’m wondering if you could comment at some point on the ethics of Googling people when you hire. At my workplace, we had a training on DEI principles in hiring and one of the guidelines was to only review the info the candidates give you; don’t do outside Googling or searches for info. At the time, it made sense; bias could be introduced if you find out someone likes a rival sports team, or disagrees with your politics or whatever. (As it turned out, we ended up losing our opportunity to hire because someone went through his old boys network to look for info against a candidate he didn’t like, and our grandboss found out and pulled the hire from us.)

    But then you have cases like this where a candidate is showing their lack of fitness for the job all over the whole internet, or people are widely known to be charlatans but for obvious reasons aren’t putting that in their application materials.

    Is there ever an appropriate time to Google job candidates without introducing bias into the search process?

    1. Artemesia*

      Only considering the information presented by the candidate is how we get George Santos. Of course you do background checks, reference checks and look at social media. And you have some guidelines about what is relevant. Party pictures not relevant; Proud Boy rhetoric –yeah, don’t want that in the workplace.

    2. Junior Assistant Peon*

      When I hired people, I resisted the temptation to snoop on their social media for exactly that reason. If you inadvertently discover that the candidate is a member of a protected class, you can’t un-see it.

        1. Junior Assistant Peon*

          All the more reason not to do it. You might discover that a candidate is a different race than they appear, they have a same-sex partner, they’re trying to get pregnant, they have childcare obligations, etc. Best not to open that can of worms.

  22. Mr. Lastname*

    I have to admit I question the judgment of anyone who uses their real name on Twitter if their gig isn’t somehow making money off of social media. But if these people want to expose their opinions to anyone who may ever Google them they are free to do so.

  23. Jen*

    I was involved in the hiring process for a new manager in a team parallel to mine… and we made the mistake of hiring someone like OP’s potential manager.

    A few months into his tenure, a (female) candidate accepted our offer to join his team… then she looked him up on LinkedIn and sent us a follow up email saying that she is reconsidering her decision because of the extremely misogynistic stuff he was posting.

    Luckily, he had already been let go because he hadn’t managed to deliver anything in almost 3 months, neither as an individual contributor nor as a manager, and he managed to be rude and dismissive to people he was supposed to get training from.

    He then sued us, claiming unfair dismissal due to discrimination. When he realized his manager doesn’t even have LinkedIn, he decided that I had seen his post and told her. He also claimed that the company-wide invite to an optional Pride webinar was harassment. To no one’s surprise, he lost.

    His LinkedIn now features misogynistic posts *and* victimization (and a couple of very out-there conspiracy theories). He posted about a new job about 3 months ago, but now it’s strangely absent from his profile… I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the trial period in our country is also 3 months.

  24. Plock*

    Hoo boy. There’s an Ask A Manager post that dates back to 2016 linked in this person’s original post. Incredible to see a snapshot of what people said and believed about political speech/hate speech/a person’s intentions. When you know how everything is about to explode online, it’s a real trip!

  25. Bill and Heather's Excellent Adventure*

    Bullet well and truly dodged! Glad your management did the responsible thing, OP!

  26. Magenta*

    I can understand why people are happy with this outcome, that it is probably for the best.

    But the gloating over it leaves a bad taste in my mouth. This is a real person, with a family who has lost a job, probably already handed his notice in at his last job so is facing a difficult situation.

    It is a bad situation all round.

    1. Insert Clever Name Here*

      This is not a bad situation all around, though. It’s the consequences of Xander’s hateful words and beliefs impacting him and sparing those he has hateful beliefs about. Look, if he has a family and is the primary breadwinner then yes that is unfortunate for his family…but his (theoretical) family’s (possible) situation doesn’t trump the clear fact that an openly racist and misogynistic person was going to be the boss of a team with POC and women. I’m not going to be sad that the LW’s team didn’t have to have him as a boss.

    2. Onward*

      Ever hear the saying “play stupid games, win stupid prizes”? This is called ‘the consequences of one’s own actions.’

    3. JB*

      It’s not a bad situation all around. It’s a bad situation for the racist who suffered the obvious and predictable consequences for his actions. And TBH I couldn’t care less. If a bank robber goes to prison, am I supposed to feel sorry for him and his family?

      It’s a *great* situation for the company, because they get to dodge a scumbag employee before he becomes a legal liability.

    4. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

      The people he was going to manage in this job, that he makes no secret out of seeing as less than, are also real people. And they didn’t do or say anything unprofessional, why should they be the ones to be facing a difficult situation and not him? Yeah, I’ll gloat.

    5. Jennifer Strange*

      People are allowed to be relieved that someone who thinks of them as less than human won’t be managing them.

    6. Fishsticks*

      I have great empathy for any member of his family reliant on his income who does not support or agree with his repugnant beliefs. They will suffer because of him, he is responsible for that. Him alone.

  27. ENFP in Texas*

    A great outcome, and way to go, Giles! He always did have a good head on his shoulders. Well… except maybe for those Ripper days, but still…

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