Help Wanted — ‘Arrogant Americans’ Need Not Apply

By: admin
Published: February 19th, 2010

From Fox News
By Joshua Rhett Miller

Looking for a job? Well, if you’re an “arrogant American,” you had better search elsewhere.

An information technology staffing firm based in Rolling Meadows, Ill., posted an advertisement for a technical writer that warned that an “arrogant American” would not flourish in the position.

“Exelon is looking to provide these proposals to Chinese businesses, so someone who is respectful and understands Chinese culture is preferred. An arrogant American will not work well in this role,” the listing read.

The ad, posted by Viva USA, an information technology consulting firm, has since been removed. Varuna Singh, the company’s development manager, told it received the language from its client, Exelon Nuclear Partners, and the wording somehow got past a “junior recruiter” who posted the advertisement on

“We are taking it down immediately, this was a mistake,” Singh said. “This was not wordage by Viva. This was sent into us by the client, but we, as the staffing company, should have looked into it before posting.”

Singh apologized for the error, citing “negligence” on the company’s behalf.

Judith Rader, a spokeswoman for Exelon, said the company apologizes for the “offensive and inappropriate” language contained in the job posting.

“Exelon was surprised and very disappointed to see this job posting including this offensive and inappropriate language,” a statement to read. “This statement was not approved by Exelon and in no way reflects the company’s policies and values. We regret that this language appeared in recruiting materials that were prepared by a third party and not approved by Exelon. We apologize for this error and the offense it has caused. We are taking steps to ensure this does not happen again. Exelon is deeply committed to diversity and inclusion, and we make every effort to attract and retain talent of all backgrounds.”

Diana Johnston, an attorney for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, said a hiring decision based on national origin would be a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination by employers on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin.

“You always have to look at the whole thing in context, but certainly it does violate Title VII to discriminate based on national origin,” she said. “If you make a hiring decision based on national origin, including it based on somebody being American, that would be a violation.”

Rose Valenta, of Chalfont, Pa., said she received the job description via e-mail from Viva on Tuesday.

“I was OK with the first paragraph, but when I got to the second, I was floored,” she told “It made me furious. People need to know about this. There’s a lot of things here that need to be looked into.”

Ferne Wolf, a St. Louis-based employment law attorney, said the posting “sounds like national origin discrimination” and suggested the advertisement be brought to the attention of EEOC officials.

“I think a jury could reasonably conclude that there’s already a predisposition [by the firm] that Americans are arrogant,” she said. “That’s like saying ditzy blondes need not apply.”

Wolf continued, “You’d think they would know better. Maybe they need a lawyer. There’s plenty of good defense attorneys in Chicago.”

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This entry was posted on Friday, February 19th, 2010 at 11:50 am and is filed under Business, Society. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

1 Comments on “Help Wanted — ‘Arrogant Americans’ Need Not Apply”

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  1. 1. g kaiser
    July 18th, 2010 at 1:02 am

    But in essence, they are right. In many places Americans are seen as arrogant, rightly and wrongly, and this
    advert just draws attention to that fact.

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