A video that is making the rounds at various job sites, Workplace Violence, promotes a negative stereotype of committed believers, especially Catholics. The video has the commendable goal of advising workers of sources of violence on the job, but in doing so it unfairly impugns Catholicism. For example, in the segment titled “A Strategy for Prevention,” the following remark is made: “Many perpetrators are described as being religious or political extremists. This behavior further drives co-workers away.” This statement is said while there is a close-up shot of a grotto; the camera focuses on a statue of the Blessed Virgin.
In another part, “Awareness & Prevention,” the same statement is made, but this time the camera focuses on a potential perpetrator who is shown eating his lunch with a co-worker, clearly harassing him while holding a copy of the Bible. The training manual that accompanies the video classifies the “typical perpetrator” being “religious or political extremist.”
Catholic League executive assistant Susan Fani questioned a person associated with the video and was told that the tape could be “tailored” to suit the needs of any company. The league, of course, is not interested in doctoring the video of some people while allowing everyone else to learn of religion’s nefarious role. The very fact that the outlet that produced the tape, Video Training Source, was willing to accommodate the Catholic League suggests that they are not unaware of the tape’s offensive nature.
The league will press its case further and hopes the training video will be appropriately “tailored” for everyone.