Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Explain This to Me

Anucha Browne Sanders won her lawsuit claiming that Isiah Thomas sexually harassed her at work. She won $11.6 million from the jury. Jimmy Dolan was held personally liable for $3.6 million of the fine. Madison Square Garden was held liable for $8 million. Isiah is not personally liable for any damages to Ms Sanders.

How can the person who committed the sexual harassment not be liable for anything but Jimmy Dolan who didn't harass her be personally liable for $3.6 million?

Is this a messed up country or what?

Is there a political candidate running anywhere in the country that is for tort reform? I will vote for that person if I can.

Maybe the jury of 'peers' just wanted the rich guy to pay for wrecking the Knicks franchise for hiring Isiah to run the team so this seemed like the best way to do it. That makes a lot more sense than saying Dolan is responsible for Isiah's sexual harassment.

Actually I am not upset with Dolan getting hit since he fired her obviously because she was neglecting her job to drum up support for her lawsuit. Dolan should have realized he would get busted for that but why is it 'sexual' harassment anyway? Did Isiah proposition Ms Sanders? Did he talk lewd manner to her? Did he expose himself or make suggestive comments about sexual favors for certain considerations?

No. He called her a bitch. Judging from the fact that she took him to court for doing that I think he was right but even if he wasn't that isn't sexual harassment. It is plain harassment just like cursing anyone would be.

But that is off the point. The point is how can a jury not decide that the man calling the woman a bitch isn't liable for saying it?

When juries start trying to determine what would be the most fair and who should pay regardless of who is at fault then the system is pretty broken. This trial was about a jury of peers determining that Isiah was mean to a woman but Dolan had the real money so he should pay.

Now comes the interesting part. Will David Stern punish Isiah for being found guilty of harassment or Dolan who has to pay the fine? Maybe neither person will be punished from the league. After all they aren't players so they are allowed to break the law without repercussions.

Maybe it isn't the legal system but society in general that's broken.


Ryan Schwan said...

The lawsuit was not only about sexual harassment by Isaid, but also about MSG being a work environment where sexual harassment was common and allowed to occur by the executives in charge.

Obviously the jury thought that harassment occured regularly at the Garden, and that Dolan allowed it to happen. They also didn't think they had enough proof that Isiah had done the harassing.

Thus, the verdict against Dolan and MSG and not Isaih personally.

I don't think it's a ridiculous verdict. I sure as hell wouldn't want my daughter working at MSG.

Sean said...

The suit was also about Browne Sanders being unfairly dismissed by Dolan. That was the main claim against him, I think.

And Isaiah did a lot more than just call her "bitch". He told her he loved her, told her he was attracted to her, hugged her and tried to kiss her.

I'm not a huge Bill Simmons fan, but his guide to the whole mess is helpful.

Anonymous said...

The business who employs you bears the burden.