Hey, kids, welcome to the Phile. How are you? Something about mass commercial soda companies confronting racism always leads to social media snafu. First, there was the infamously cringey Kendall Jenner Pepsi commercial in 2017 which has aged even worse than critics imagined. And now the Coca-Cola Company is in hot water over their diversity training which reportedly urged workers to “be less white.” Frankly, there are critics on both sides of the debate. While actions by Pepsi were not radical enough (or at all), the recent step by Coke is being decried as “reverse racism.” The question then becomes one that’s nearly impossible to answer under capitalism. To what degree can a company outwardly profess progressive ideals while maintaining an order that continuously overlooks both consumers and workers of color? In 2021, campaigns... both commercial and political... rely on perceived authenticity. And that’s just one reason why the move by Coca-Cola has drawn especially sharp criticism. Screenshots from Coca-Cola’s new diversity training program were leaked on Twitter by Karlyn Borysenko, a self-described “Former Democrat” and “Unwoke activist”... whatever that means. On February 19th, she posted images from Coke’s online “Confronting Racism” training program, reportedly shared by an “internal whistleblower.” As the screenshots show, the training included slides entitled, “Understanding What it Means to Be White, Challenging What it Means to Be Racist.”
As a response to that challenge, the program encourages workers “to be less white,” accompanied by a list of seven reasons how. Predictably, it did not take long for an angry online mob to grow, accusing the company of “reverse racism.” One such commenter, employment lawyer, and GOP official Harmeet K. Dhillon, re-tweeted the post and calling it “blatant racial discrimination.” In response, a Coca-Cola spokesperson released a (fairly lukewarm) statement that did not deny that the training took place, but insisted that its message “is not a focus of our company’s curriculum.” Coca-Cola also denied that Karlyn Borysenko would have received the screenshots from an “internal whistleblower,” as the training seminar was publicly accessible on LinkedIn Learning. However, the link provided by Coca-Cola has since been taken down. Newsweek reported that LinkedIn removed the course on February 22nd, following the backlash. The “Confronting Racism” learning curriculum, adopted by the Coca-Cola Company, was written by White Fragility author, sociologist Robin DiAngelo. White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism was published in 2018 and remained on the New York Times Bestseller List for more than a year. DiAngelo, who is white, spent more than 20 years working in corporate diversity training. She wrote White Fragility for a white audience after reflecting on the hostility she witnessed from white people during racial diversity training. Both White Fragility and the “Confronting Racism” learning program draw on the concepts of Critical Race Theory, an American sociological framework developed during the 1980s. Critical Race Theory derives from two underlying themes: 1. White supremacy exists. 2. Transforming the harmful relationship between law and racial power, currently rooted in white supremacy, is possible. Turning concepts of Critical Race Theory into part of a learning plan for corporate entities might, ideally, lead to a more inclusive workplace. After all, in the wake of every new controversy regarding racism at the professional level, the official outcome is usually the same: more diversity training. It’s one of the few concrete measures we have to tackle discriminatory bias. So why not try overhauling the process? In an experimental move, Coca-Cola... wittingly or not... included aspects of Critical Race Theory as part of the company’s evolving movement. However, this is not the first time Robin DiAngelo’s work has faced criticism. As the Twitter mob accused the new training of being racist against white people, many academic experts have previously complained that DiAngelo’s writings assume a certain level of class privilege. The arguments might sound quite different... one from the left and one from the right... but get at a similar point: white people are not a monolith. As such, DiAngelo’s arguments are most helpfully aimed at “the well-educated liberal elite” while her opinions on a mass “white voice” and “white experience” are not necessarily as effective when applied to the real working world. For example, in the case of the Coca-Cola company, it looks like racist actions have historically been perpetrated at the top of the corporate ladder. Rather than, ostensibly, by factory workers completing the charged diversity training. Grace Elizabeth Hale’s 2018 New York Times op-ed, “When Jim Crow Drank Coke” outlines the historic... and troubling... link between Coca-Cola and the African-American community. Coca-Cola was invented in 1886 by pharmacist John Pemberton. It was famously infused with cocaine, and skirted around various prohibition laws. The drink became a refreshing... and stimulating... favorite among wealthy and middle-class whites who could casually enjoy the beverage at local soda fountains. Then In 1899, Coke invented the glass soda bottle, immediately de-segregating access to the pop. But as black people began to purchase and enjoy the drug-infused soft drink, the white community suddenly worried that it would lead to a rise in cocaine usage among African-Americans. A mass hysteria broke out. As time went on, the cocaine was ultimately removed from the product. Coke then stepped up to create new ad campaigns that would prolong the popularity of the product. Despite the widespread demand for Coke in both white and black areas, Coke focused advertisements solely on white consumers. Their competitor, Pepsi, was more than happy to fill that gap, hiring a black marketing team, and even Duke Ellington as a spokesman. This went on until Pepsi eventually abandoned the cause, fretting over losing the favor of whites. That’s when Coke, finally, recognized the commercial viability of the black market and began fostering an ongoing relationship with the N.A.A.C.P. That partnership was called into question in 1999. In 1999, a lawsuit filed by black Coke employees accused Coca-Cola of “erecting a corporate hierarchy in which black employees were clustered at the bottom of the pay scale,” according to NewsOne. They averaged $26,000 less per year less than their white co-workers. In November 2000, came the largest discrimination settlement to date: $192 million. $156 million to the employees, plus a $50 million donation to the Coca-Cola Foundation for community programs. In addition to the massive payout, this settlement required the implementation of changes in how the “company manages, promotes and treats black employees.” But the issues did not end there. In 2012, sixteen black and Hispanic Coke employees sued claiming they were forced to work under “racially discriminatory” conditions constituting a “hostile environment.” One worker said she was openly ridiculed as a “nappy head and Aunt JaMamma” with no disciplinary action being taken against her verbal abuser. After such a history of such discriminatory practices, it’s no wonder that Coca-Cola sought to update its image through a contemporary and academically-rooted diversity training course. But since the company has yet to speak out in true defense of the new curriculum, the gesture feels empty and a looming space is left in this cultural conversation. One that’s happily dominated by “unwoke activists” like Karlyn Borysenko. Though I suspect Robin DiAngelo would have a succinct response to those posting in the fragile Twitter frenzy: “Be less white.”
An FBI field office director located in the Upstate New York section sexually harassed eight female subordinates and then asked one of them to have sex with him in a conference room. According to a report, James Hendricks, who left the FBI’s field office in Albany in 2018, supervised more than 200 agents and several other FBI employees. But according to his colleagues, they now allege that he was a very “skilled predator” who leered about women and touched them inappropriately. This according to a 52-page office of Inspector General report that was obtained by the Associated Press. Hendricks’ name was blacked out in the report, but law enforcement sources familiar with the case identified him as a now-retired FBI leader in the Federal Report that was obtained by the Freedom of Information Act. The alleged sexual harassments date back to his time at FBI headquarters, where he served as a Section Chief in the Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate. Six of his accusers were located in Albany, while two others stated that they were harassed by him in Washington D.C. Some of his colleagues stated that he was routinely inappropriate around attractive women co-workers, and became super “giddy” in their presents believing he was “incapable of stopping himself.” One woman even carried a ruler at FBI headquarters in order to smack Hendricks’ hand away whenever he groped her breasts and legs. A second accuser stated that the “FBI Boss” tugged on her ear and then kissed her cheek while at a closed-door meeting. According to OIG Report, which serves as the Justice Department’s Internal Watchdog, Hendricks joined the FBI back in 1998 and was among several senior officers who avoided discipline and retired with full benefits last year despite there being several sexual misconduct claims against him being sustained today. The Associated Press reported that one woman had accused Hendricks of pressuring her into a sexual relationship, claiming that he could “push out” those who crossed him. According to the report, “He was in a powerful position, and she worried about what he would do if she did not respond to his advances.” The former FBI director allegedly also asked a female subordinate to sit in the passenger seat of his car so he could “play with that beautiful hair.” The woman says that she didn’t report the incident to FBI officials since her work required his approval and she “wanted to be successful in the office.” OIG investigators stated that the 50-year-old now writes a law enforcement blog and didn’t respond to any messages seeking comment. But he did tell previous Federal investigators that his accusers had “exaggerated or misinterpreted his behavior.” He allegedly told investigators, “It’s an ugly, ugly laundry list of things that were said, and that’s really hurtful to me and it really just disappoints me.” FBI officials have declined to discuss the Hendricks’ case but stated that the Bureau has a zero-tolerance policy for any sexual harassment and fosters a work environment where every employee is valued, respected, and protected.
The head of one of New York City’s top Catholic schools has officially been removed from his position amid several allegations of sexual misconduct involving adult members of the school community, including some underlinings. According to the School Board of Trustees, Father Daniel Lahart was placed on leave for his position as president of Regis High School located on the Upper East Side. Lahart had been president of Regis, which is located in Manhattan, since 2016. A letter from the chair of all the Boys Schools Board of Trustees stated “The investigation is now coming to a close, and the board of trustees has determined, based on the findings of the third-party investigator, that Fr. Lahart engaged in inappropriate and unwelcome verbal communications and physical conduct, all of a sexual nature, with adult members of the Regis community, including subordinates. This conduct was nonconsensual, and moreover, continued notwithstanding express requests from the affected parties for the conduct to cease.” The father was removed permanently from his role at the private school. Apparently, the removal of Father Lahart comes at a very delicate moment for the Roman Catholic Church. All of its dioceses located in New York State are now under investigation by the New York State attorney general, Letitia James, for the way it handles cases of sexual misconduct. Fordham Professor of Christian Spirituality Dr. Colt Anderson stated that Catholic schools with the proudest histories are unfortunately some of the most secretive ones. He stated, “All the kids who are going there now know they have a special privilege being there.” He also noted that it was a good sign that Regis had launched a quick investigation which resulted in consequences. The Jesuit Religious Order, which runs the school, has not described what the inappropriate behavior was, but a spokesperson stated that the order agrees with the decision to remove the father ultimately. Anderson warned religious orders can sometimes be tempted in order to protect their own members rather than complain about their appropriate behavior. Anderson noted, “And they think about redemption, and they think about forgiveness. Those are deeply baked into the way they approach these kinds of problems and so they don’t want to publicize these things.” He stated that the termination was quick showing that some reforms within the church are working in the wake of several Catholic sex abuse scandals going on. He stated that sexually inappropriate behavior with adults at the school continued even though they had asked the father to stop. Investigators stated that no students were part of the alleged inappropriate behavior. Father Lahart nor his Representatives have released a statement on the situation. But, before the misconduct allegations surfaced, he was allegedly fond of posting several Facebook images of famous Regis alumnus, which includes "Saturday Night Live"’s Colin Jost and Dr. Anthony Fauci. It is still unclear if he would be allowed to continue Catholic Ministry in some way or another.
A surgeon was put on suspension by a medical board in Brazil after she went viral on the social media platform TikTok for making videos of herself flaunting and dancing with the skin and fat that she removed from her patients. Plastic surgeon Caren Trisoglio Garcia has been suspended by the Regional Medical Board of the State of San Paulo, Brazil, for the videos she shared and is currently under investigation. If found guilty of misconduct, she may have her license revoked. Her suspension was announced on the website that belongs to the board, called CREMESP, and Garcia will not be able to see or attend to any patients during the investigation. Based in the Brazilian municipality of Ribeirao Preto, she enters each video dancing, holding human fat in a plastic bag. She captioned one video saying, “This is the breast,” and had identified another bag with human fat saying, “This is underarm fat.” She also has referred to the bags of skin and fat that she’s held up in videos as “Today’s trophy.” Garcia was already suspended for six months from the Brazilian Society of Plastic Surgeon (SBCP) by the time the board found her videos antithetical. The SBCP found Garcia guilty of breaking five of its internal regulations, which do include sharing images of body parts even with the patient’s authorization. SBCP president Estefano Luiz Favaretto told local news channel EPTV that he encouraged CREMESP to “take action” because doctors were outraged seeing Garcia’s videos. Garcia’s TikTok has 640k followers and around 11 million likes. She also posts videos of her posing and working out. I’m not sure what this lady was thinking, but it’s insane to see what people will do for some Internet fame. Social media has become such a normal part of society as an easy way to make a name for yourself, and the obsession can drive people not to think about the consequences it could have on the rest of their lives. I would hate to lose a license I put in a ton of effort and work towards, just because I wanted to be known somewhere like TikTok.
Unlike other Marvel series and projects, "The Falcon and the Winter Soldier" doesn’t simply focus on the highly-powered beings that threaten the world. Rather, the Disney+ series is centering its focus on the reality within the world when Thanos’ Blip happened. Half of the world’s population returned after a five-year absence. Thanos was right about the problem. In those five years, the borders between countries were not too strict with millions of empty homes. This led to more resources available to the remaining population, improving the quality of life. This is where Sam and Bucky fighting against people who are trying to preserve the current state of things. The philosophy of Thanos’ desire to snap half of the population’s existence started with his own home planet, Titan. The planet collapsed due to overpopulation. Thanos embarked on a mission to stop other worlds from suffering the same fate. He set out on a decades-long mission of trying to eradicate half of every population he could find. Thanos believed that those left behind will prosper, with the abundance of resources left by those eradicated by his Blip. If the heroes weren’t able to go back in time and stop him, whatever he has done would have been final. Earth’s fate in the five years that followed after the Blip as shown in "The Falcon and the Winter Soldier" seemingly prove this to be true. Those who don’t have food or shelter found an abundance of food and even moved the world to a more unified organization. Thanos’ hypothesis about the problem was right. However, even though Thanos was right about the problem, his way of getting to the answer was the murder of many innocent people. He placed the lives of those people in his own hands. Thanos' solution was wrong. Some people may see Thanos as right as they see the benefits of what he has done. However, in a few more decades, when the population starts rising again, would the massacre of millions eventually be the answer again? Would a worldwide ban on giving birth or child policy be in place to control the growing population? Would it require a governing organization to impose strict measures to control people and punish them if they do not follow the policy? Thanos is right about the problem but his solution of murdering billions of innocent people does not guarantee anything. In fact, it doesn’t solve anything. It may only provide some years of abundance and prosperity but scarcity will always be present. If murdering half the population is the answer, then why did the civilizations during the ancient times when humans are few still experienced hunger, poverty, and scarcity? The population of humans in ancient times is less than the population that was left after the Blip. Yet, even during those times, the resources were scarce. There was famine, poverty, and hunger. Some people may argue that that was the ancient time and the world that Thanos left is more advanced compared to the ancient times. The unforeseen changes in nature, the crops getting affected by locusts, and many uncontrollable world happenings will continue to persist. Even with all the advancements, humans still rely on nature for the most basic necessities. There will be fewer people to work in certain industries. They have to maintain the industries and advancements made with fewer people to aid them. If we look at the world today, even with all the advancements, when an earthquake or storm happens, these advancements cannot fight these things. There might even be whole industries eradicated as the people who work on them may have been wiped out by the Blip. If we put things in perspective in the real world, there may even be middle-class people who were not struggling for resources and living in normal conditions. They are working just to feed their families and build their futures. There might be people who came from poverty, worked hard to lift themselves out of it, and are starting to prosper in life. Yet, the Blip took away their lives at the moment when they are receiving the fruit of their hard work. Moreover, Thanos didn’t simply wipe out the criminals and those people who may have been justifiably needed to be removed from the world. The Blip was random which means there are many innocent people who died while there are still criminals and evil people left that could still wreak havoc and inflict pain on other people. What Thanos did may have provided a short relief, providing an abundance of resources but as the ancient times have proven, even if the population is few, scarcity is always present. It can also be wiped out by unexpected events in nature. Was Thanos right or wrong? He was right about the problem, but his solution was temporary. A temporary solution that happened in exchange for billions of innocent lives. Some people may argue that his solution is right and they may have their own beliefs on why but the Blip still doesn’t guarantee anything in the long run.
Do you know what makes me chuckle? When people reenact their childhood photos... like this one...
Hahahaha. This week is the anniversary of the Titanic sinking. I think I know why the Titanic hit the iceberg. It's because it looked like this...
Hahahaha. If you're looking for a graphic design job, you may want to contact whoever employed the people responsible for this following design fails. They are most likely hiring.
Hahaha. We all know you're supposed to smile and say thanks when someone gives you a gift. But what if the gift in question is a completely inedible cake? A woman recently emailed the Phile to ask if she mishandled a sticky situation. Her aunt, who's a professional baker, gave her twin brother a perfect cake for their birthday... but let her daughter, 9, make a cake for this woman. And when she gave her brutally honest opinion of the cake, the nine-year-old overheard. Now she's wondering if she's wrong.
"Last week was my and my twin brother's birthday. Our family wanted to throw us a small party and we thought it'd be a great idea since we've hardly gotten to see anyone in our extended family for the last year. I was particularly excited because our aunt owns a bakery and makes the most delicious cakes and I wasn't able to get one last year. The day of the party comes and my family members arrive. My aunt comes up to me and my brother with her daughter, Averi, in tow. Both my aunt and Averi have a small box in their hands and Averi is absolutely beaming. My aunt says, "Here are your cakes! I hope you like them!" and Averi immediately chimes in "And I made yours!" When my brother opens his box there's the world's most beautiful white chocolate cake. Absolutely supreme work by my aunt, it's even got raspberry filling. My brother's favorite. I couldn't wait to see mine. The second cake was lackluster: Needless to say when I opened my box I was quite disappointed. When Averi said that she made the cake she meant it. I don't think my aunt had any involvement with my cake at all and it showed. The cake was lopsided, the icing noticeably uneven, and looked like it was decorated by a blind and/or drunk monkey that had access to sprinkles. To be nice I took a bite. Lemon favor, which I detest. Even if it were a flavor that I liked it was dry and could barely qualify as edible. I set it aside, hugged and thanked my cousin for the cake, and continued with the party despite my disappointment. After the party was over my aunt and mom were talking on the phone and my aunt asked to speak with me. She asked me what did I think about the cake and I was brutally honest. I told my aunt that I couldn't eat the cake and had to throw it out and that I wished she had made a cake for both my brother and I and just let Averi have her little side project. Unfortunately my aunt had put me on speakerphone so that my cousin could hear my answer and I gave the worst answer possible. Now Averi doesn't want to talk to me anymore and my aunt and mom are upset with me. My brother called me and ass and said I should have just said I liked the cake but how was I supposed to know my aunt would put me on speakerphone like that? Was I wrong?" Hmmm. Your aunt should have not given cakes of such unequal quality not put you on speaker without at least warning you had Averi "help" make both cakes, rather than let her do one on her own. You were not given equal treatment as your twin brother. And your aunt is wrong for having you on speakerphone without your consent. That cake was made with love. What possible benefit would anyone have got from your unvarnished opinions, even if you hadn't been on speaker phone? Your young cousin tried her best to make you a cake out of love. I don’t blame her for not wanting to talk to you. Speaker phone or not, you sound incredibly entitled. For future, any of the following would have been acceptable. "I wish you would have given me a heads up." "I appreciated the effort." "It must have taken her some time to complete." "The sprinkles were cute." And jeez, nobody owes your family a white chocolate cake with raspberry filling, much less TWO of them. The kid is 9, she is learning a new passion (or WAS learning, before her confidence was crushed). Apologize to your niece, AND your aunt. Or guaranteed you're never seeing another one of her cakes. So there you have it. Speakerphone or not, maybe just be nice about people's gifts? if you have a problem you'd like my advice on then email me at email@example.com. Now from the home office in Port Jefferson, New York here is...