'Ask a Mexican!' Kerfuffle Leaves Employee 'Feeling Leery and Hurt'

january 30, 2007  02:33 pm
Late last year, Richard Diefenbach was suspended from his job in Newport, Ore., for five days without pay, and accused of racial discrimination and sexual harassment for sharing a copy of Gustavo Arellano's politically incorrect syndicated column with a co-worker. Diefenbach tells The Oregonian that the incident had a deleterious impact. "I have to weigh everything twice before I say it now," he says. "I felt like my organization branded me as something I am not, a racist and a sexist -- a horrible person." Arellano says "Ask a Mexican!" is now syndicated in 21 weeklies with a combined readership of 1.3 million. CORRECTION: Arellano tells us his column is syndicated in papers with a combined circulation (i.e., not readership) of 1.3 million.