We have been discussing the free speech issues raised by efforts to terminate professors who criticize the Black Live Matter Movement or aspects of the protests following the killing of George Floyd. However, there is another such controversy with the inverse fact pattern. Claira Janover has been fired as an “incoming government and public business service analyst” at Deloitte after posting a video that suggested that she would stab people who said “all lives matter.” Yesterday, we discussed a dean at the University of Massachusetts who says that she was fired for using such a line in an email. Ironically, Janover shows the same intolerance for anyone with an opposing view, but the case still raises some of the same free speech issues that we have previously discussed, including the punishment of individuals for their social media postings.
Janover just started the job after graduating from Harvard University but was fired after her TikTok video where she lashed out at anyone who tells her that “all lives matter.” She attacked anyone with “the nerve, the sheer entitled Caucasity to say, ‘all lives matter.’ . . . I’ma stab you. I’ma stab you, and while you’re struggling and bleeding out, I’ma show you my paper cut and say, ‘My cut matters, too’”
She posted that video and later returned to social media to lash out at her termination.
Janover insists that the clip was “clearly” an “analogous joke,” and noted a message with it explicitly stating: “For legal reasons this is a joke.”
I did not see the message but I honestly took the video as a poor joke. We have seen other such jokes go awry. Indeed, while such jokes can often receive strikingly different treatment from universities and employers depending on who is the butt of the joke. I would prefer a more tolerant approach that is not dependent on the content of such a posting.
For years, we have discussed the free speech concerns as private and public employers punish workers for their statements or actions in their private lives. We have addressed an array of such incidents, including social media controversies involving academics. In some cases, racially charged comments have been treated as free speech while in others they have resulted in discipline or termination. It is that lack of a consistent standard that has magnified free speech concerns. We have previously discussed the issue of when it is appropriate to punishment people for conduct outside of the work place. We have followed cases where people have been fired after boorish or insulting conduct once their names and employers are made known. (here and here and here and here and here and here).
Janover has been mocked for saying that she fear being “murdered” and added “Apparently I’m threatening the lives of people — unlike cops, obviously.”
Janover seemed to careen from the defense to the attack, hitting her company on social media: “I’m sorry, Deloitte, that you can’t see that. That you were cowardice [sic] enough to fight somebody who’s going to make an indelible change in the world and is going to have an impact.” That would certainly rule out any reconciliation with the employer. She also lashed out at Trump supporters: “I’m too strong for you. I’m too strong for any of you ‘All Lives Matter,’ racist Trump supporters. It sucks. But it doesn’t suck as much as systemic racism. And I’m not going to stop using my platform to advocate for it.”
The question however remains the same. Does it matter if you believe (as I do) that this was meant as a dumb joke? It should. She made no connection to the company. That was done, yet again, by critics who wanted her fired.
I have previously raised my concern that the greatest threat to free speech values may be coming from “Little Brother” rather than “Big Brother.” This comes in the form of private censorship of social media but also punishment by companies for statements on social media. The result is a type of fishbowl society for free speech as everyone feels that they are being monitored for any controversial pictures or statements. The result is chilling for those, like Janover, who want to speak out on political causes like Black Lives Matter. One can certainly criticize her for her rhetoric and even her views but there is no reason why her personal views should be viewed as material to their work at Deloitte.
The controversy also shows the hypocrisy of many in these controversies, including Janover. Those who fostered intolerance for opposing views are the first to demand tolerance for their own views. Those who criticize the “cancel culture” are the first to try to cancel others. I fear that the loser in all of this will be free speech and the sense of freedom to engage others on social media or public forums.
390 thoughts on ““I’ma Stab You”: Connecticut Woman Fired Over Pro-Black Lives Matter TikTok Video”
In all my years in the corporate world, I’ve learned one important lesson: HR does not have a sense of humor. Businesses cannot afford to get sued by ignoring any threat of violence, no matter how “funny” it seems to the person cracking the “joke.” If you violate one of those hard and fast rules, you’re outta here and there’s nothing you can do about it. Also, since she’s decided to go public with her blubbering, she may have a time finding another job. She needs to practice this mantram: “Can I super size that order?” I can only hope she doesn’t stab me for posting this.
Allan, thank you for the link to “Multicultural” Education by Thomas Sowell. My mobile device is not a goodbye search engine, I fear.
That’s fantastic….Imma unemployment commie now.
Over 2 decades at Deloitte. I lasted this long by muzzling all religious (aka Conservative Christian) values and political (once again Conservative) opinions. They are not welcome at all. You are forced to sit through “classes” that instruct you that your beliefs are incorrect and (essentially) evil. Object at your peril. 10 years ago, we had training that made clear to anyone with active brain wave patterns that Conservative postings on social media are lethal to your career. I find it amazing that she found about the ONLY way a liberal will be punished for social media at Deloitte: violence (talk or action).
I think she should have more anger at Harvard for not teaching her civil behavior.
The rest of the babble that floods out of her mouth is a Deloitte dream come true. Utter rubbish. The only reason there is a light in her eye is that Harvard removed her brain and filled the empty skull with lightning bugs.
Allen – is Deloitte a replacement for the old Arthur Anderson?
I had the misfortune of stumbling across her Tik Tok account and because it was a Saturday and I’ve got absolutely nothing going for me in my own life, I decided to ride the wave of video after video talking about how she’s going to make it after all. My goodness, listening to her long enough causes one to run the risk of believing that attending Harvard is a personality trait. She cannot go a video, either in her comments or the video itself, but what she doesn’t have to remind all of us mere mortals that she attends Harvard. As a student.
Anyone that believes 16 Russians could influence an election and 12.5 million illegals can’t is either stupid or naive
Allan, could you provide a link to the Thomas Sowell essay? At least, what is the title?
Thanks in advance.
David, I frequently hold things for later to read when I don’t have the address or title. I did you and anyone else interested a favor this once. The way I got to the source was by taking the first sentence in putting into the search bar which provided the source. In the future you can do the same and you can even review Sowell’s blog. He is brilliant and when he deals in important matters his research is impeccable.
Allan– Thanks for posting Multicultural Education. Very good article.
Young I am sure you have read Sowell’s books but on the rare chance you only know him from editorials take a book on a subject you are interested in and read it. The man is absolutely incredible. You might especially like Intellectuas and Society. Enigma might like his autobiograhpy “A Personal Odyssey”.
Sowell writes with such clarity; such commonsense. Thanks for posting Allan.
I am reading my first Sowell book, Intellectuals and Society, and it is fantastic. The dude really knows his stuff and he really dissects the issues. I am a little over 1/4 of the way thru it and it has to be one of the best written books I have ever read.
Intellectuals and Society was my number one choice for Young. He has more important books than his autobiography, “A Personal Odyssey”, but based on what you write knowing his history will demonstrate how right you are in many of your comments. I don’t know if you realize this but he was born poor and was initially a Marxist. He often criticises Marxists even those that have written on the subject and claims some of them probably never read Marx. I think his PhD paper was on Marx and Sowell delves deep never stopping and that is why he changed from Marxism to who he is today.
I haven’t read that Squeeky, (I ordered it now) but I’m certain it’s just as good as his A Conflict of Visions.
As is often the case, the initial information was not correct, She was not fired by Deloitte because she was not an employee. She had a two week internship pending for later this summer. Based on her video, Deloitte rescinded the offer. See full story here:
Harvard grad who blamed Trump supporters for getting her fired from ‘dream job’ at Deloitte after ‘All Lives Matter’ TikTok stab video did NOT work for accountancy firm
It is irrelevant whether Janover’s comment was or was not a dumb joke. This is not a free speech issue or an argument about previous legal interpretations by the courts. Janover’s position involves direct and indirect contact with clients. Her public comments/behavior are a reflection on Deloitte which could adversely affect its relationship with clients. That cannot be permitted and companies generally do not tolerate such actions in a position such as Janover’s. The issue is less clear if the employee has no direct or indirect contact with clients in which case it is an internal matter that would be viewed in a different light and may or may not result in termination.
Ms Janover’s “wink, wink, nudge nudge”” explicit endoresement of violence (“for legal reasons, this is a joke….”) correctly caused her employers to weigh the likelihood of her acting out in a violent way toward others while at her workplace over trivial political differences..
That being the case, Ms. Janover apparenty bet she’d keep her job, based on the busted flush of her membership in at least one, perhaps two protected classes. That didn’t work.
Once more… Ms Janover’s “wink, wink, nudge nudge”” explicit endorsement of violence (“for legal reasons, this is a joke….”) correctly caused her employers to weigh the likelihood of her acting out in a violent way toward others while at her workplace over trivial political differences. Had Ms Janover shown up for work with boxcutters one day at Deloitte and injured or killed someone else, Deloitte would have been found culpable because they didn’t act when Ms Janover’s convoluted rant came to light.
That being the case, Ms. Janover apparenty bet she’d keep her job, based on the busted flush of her membership in at least one, perhaps two or three protected classes. That didn’t work.
Mespo, you and a few others might enjoy this rendition of our National Anthem. It’s unique and gets better as it goes along.Make sure to unmute.
This is the sort of thing Enigma doesn’t give a rip about.
It’s as though Enigma is enraged that a local sheriff killed a runaway slave but completely ignores the black-owned plantation he ran away from.
I would never bring this up with an enraged progressive in person (well I might). I wonder how they react to the suggestion that African blacks rounded up and sold their friends, family, and neighbors into slavery. One might reasonably say the modern corollary is blacks who kill and shoot their neighbors now in Chicago, Minneapolis, and other inner cities, to protect their drug sales geography, many with guns and bullets purchased with welfare funds supplied by taxpayers.
Hillary destroyed the well functioning Libyan government when she and the CIA hired alleged “moderate Islamics” (hahahaha) to behead and anal rape legally installed President Ghadaffi. His “crime” was attempting to combine all African currency into one, to maximize their bargaining chips vs. Western banks for the largest untapped store of earth’s wealth, Africa. Hillary and western banks would have none of that. Hillary’s actions directly caused open slave trading in Libya’s downtown square. But Enigma’s DOWN WITH THAT, BECAUSE DEMOCRATS. What a God forsaken hypocrite. And no, I’m not a GOP sycophant; Bush and Cheney have earned their dirt naps for their international war crimes.
A coworker who happened to be very black and eventually lost his job for illegal drub abuse (must have weighed about 120#, normal height), told me how his neighbors and family got prescriptions for drugs like asthma inhalers, the sole purpose being to resell them on the street for profit.
Hillary destroyed the well functioning Libyan government w
Some serious questions for the president of Harvard University: Two lawyers educated at prestigious East Coast universities are being held without bail for attacking the police with Molotov cocktails during the recent riots in New York City. And now this from a Harvard student. What role does Harvard University play in normalizing political violence among its students? Isn’t this a cause for serious self-reflection among the University community?
Serious self-reflection isn’t required for the side in a culture war which the press favors. That’s been true since Otto Bismarck’s kulturkampf against Roman Catholic culture in Prussia. He had to dial that stance back and seek an accommodation with the Roman Catholics in order to effectively suppress Social Democrats in the Reichstag
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