Hello, fellow women. You may have heard that a certain spin-stopping, jowl-flapping pundit named Bill O'Reilly is being given the boot over at Fox News. And you may be laboring under the mistaken belief that he's being fired for sexually harassing women. Oh, you sweet summer children.
Bill O'Reilly wasn't fired for sexually harassing at least five women (though he did (allegedly) sexually harass at least five women). And it's adorably naive to think that someone should be fired merely on the principle that sexual harassment is wrong. For you see, Bill O'Reilly is "not returning" due to a concept that is alien to most of us women: math.
I know, I know. It sounds scary. I'm a woman too, and when I try to do simple division, my brain crackles and fizzes like a capacitor exploding from excessive voltage. Err, I mean, like a science-thingy going "ker-blooey" because of space reasons. But trust me when I say that some very smart men have come up with some math equations that can calculate when to fire a male pundit in cases of pesky women bringing forth sexual harassment claims. Brace yourselves, because here are some math words:
What this formula represents (don't worry, I consulted with male colleagues before even attempting to understand this) is the cost of harassing women in the workplace as a function of the cost of settling harassment suits (in this case, $13 million) over time spent ignoring them (13 years), as well as lost ad revenue due not offset by publicity. And unless that cost is greater than the value of one famous pundit, it's simply not economical to listen to women's concerns, as expressed by this formula:
I understand that some of you women might be asking the irrational, overly emotional question: "Why are profits more important than protecting women?" Well, first of all, shame on you for doubting the infinite wisdom of businessmen. They are able to use logic and reasoning without being burdened by the irrational, feminine concepts of "ethics" and "workplace law." Do you really want to open that can of tampons?
That's the way the Lords of Business have made other unquestionably smart business decisions, like the cost-benefit analysis that auto-manufacturers run to determine the cost of fixing their exploding cars vs. the cost of lawsuits after turning people into fried road-putty. Their math wizards have done their sorcery, and I'm sorry to report that they've discovered a human life is only worth about $200,000. It isn't them; it's just a scientific fact. Human dignity and respect is worth even less, but their value is so small that we still don't have accurate estimates.
So ladies, let's not be unreasonable here. At least Bill O'Reilly was eventually fired (when advertisers started pulling out). Sure, that meant that some women had to put up with over a decade of O'Reilly doing things like asking them to rub falafel on their privates, or calling a black co-worker "hot chocolate." But wouldn't it be selfish of us to expect Fox to fire their cash cow before he turned into a regular cow? Isn't it just a tad egotistical of us ladies to value our right to work without being told where to put a falafel more than the profitability of an angry old white man?
I know math is hard. You might also find it hard to accept a system that protects predatory men until they stop being profitable. But Bill O'Reilly has called this whole business "disheartening," and when you factor that into a complex equation that compares the outrage of millions against one man being "disheartened," it's kind of a wash.
Katie Goldin may be a woman, but she's somehow figured out how to Tweet.
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