Last week, on my Monday-morning flight to speak at a conference, I was taken by surprise during the pilot's welcome speech. When it came time to introduce the flight crew, he simply said, "Today you have an amazing crew serving you in the cabin. In the front you have Sweetness, and in the back is White Chocolate. Enjoy your flight." I'm not kidding. It happened.
There was no laughter in the plane. Definitely some murmuring. The guy sitting next to me and I immediately looked at each other in shock. Then, he said, "Well, there's an HR lawsuit waiting to happen." It was if he read my mind.
Everyone Thinks They Have Taste & A Sense Of Humor
While it was clear the pilot was trying to be funny, you have to ask yourself, "What the heck was he thinking!?" Today, when gender bias and misogyny are at the forefront of the discussion during a controversial election, how could he assume this would be okay to say on a microphone to a bunch of customers? And, even more so, what does it say about his lack of respect for his female co-workers?
Is 'Political Correctness Fatigue' Setting In?
I posted the incident on Twitter, being careful not to name the airline so I could just get a read from some of my followers. The reaction was mixed - some said it was clearly out of line, but several others commented he was just kidding and, if delivered with the right tone, was probably harmless. That led me to contemplate how subjective being politically correct really is. It also made me wonder: are we seeing so much of this that we're starting to fatigue? I mean, even I, after feeling an initial disgust, found myself moving on. What was the point of making a big deal since it would likely result in nothing?
I wish I had answers, but this was really more of a call for discussion. What would you have done in that situation? Is political correctness fatigue setting in? And if so, is that good or bad?
I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.