Exclusionary behavior at work cuts across political lines

Actress Patricia Heaton, whom I became a fan of when she played Debra Barone in the hit sitcom “Everybody Loves Raymond,” says that her conservative political views have cost her professionally at times.

Lee Warren reports for the Christian Post (link here) that Heaton “is a conservative Christian who has spoken out against embryonic stem-cell research and who is pro-life, which puts her at odds with many people in the acting industry.”

She said in the interview that she and her husband, a director, “know for a fact there are some people who have said they wouldn’t want to work with us because of our politics.”


The lede in Warren’s article states that “When you work in a culture that doesn’t share many of your views, you can probably expect a little backlash.” Yes, indeed.

During the decade-plus that I have steeped myself in the emerging workplace bullying movement, I have become convinced that political leanings are not destiny when it comes to who perpetrates bullying, exclusion, and similar behaviors at work. And while research indicates that greater diversity at work can be a source of conflict, a homogeneous work environment can be absolute hell on those who don’t fit into the dominant cultures.

In work settings defined in part by political leanings, those belonging to a distinct minority can be ostracized and iced out. And the more inflexible the worldview of the majority, the colder the atmosphere can be for those who don’t share it.

3 responses

  1. So true and despite “diversity training”; there is exclusionary behavior against those who dare to be different…especially against those who choose to stand up against unethical work behaviors.

    Now what is wrong with that picture?

    • The reason that diversity “training” (always made no sense to me–how can you train people not to be racist or sexist?) doesn’t work is because corporate culture values conformity above all else. So, yes, they want people of different races not to sue them, but they don’t really want different points of view. Corporations are hierarchical. When the top speaks, they want everyone to fall into line. They do not want diverse viewpoints.

  2. This describes the military culture today. If you are a civilian who has never served in the military, or don’t have a military spouse, you are marginalized and ostracized. If you a person of color or a woman it is worse, much worse. The military was doing better in the 90’s but since the turn of the century real diversity of intellect, values, thought processes has all but disappeared.

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