Man, Economy, and Sexual Harassment

When reading about the curious case of Garrison Keillor, the public radio icon fired for what he considers an innocent misunderstanding – or was it payback for his defense of Senator Al Franken? – I noticed a line in a comments section about where today’s raging response to sexual harassment (among other fruits of the sexual revolution) is likely to lead.
The commenter, michaeljames49, said: ‘Best advice if you own a business, hire men.’
So went several comments on the theme that sexual harassment and other egregious acts, many scores more serious than what Keillor has been accused of, is just what happens when men and women work together, that this cannot be avoided, and that, moving forward, it would be better to simply avoid integrating men and women in workplaces. The conclusion: Hiring all men or all women would save a lot of grief.
While I believe freedom of association is a natural right, I’m not so sure michaeljames49 and his interlocutors had Lysander Spooner in mind when making their point. Yet, I believe they inadvertently fell onto a likely end of our era’s anti-harassment zeitgeist, namely, that the workplace of the future will be less woman-friendly. There is sound economic logic leading to this state of affairs.

This post was published at Ludwig von Mises Institute on 12/06/2017.