Reddit thread goes viral after employee accused of ‘ethnically stereotyping’ ginger cat called Jorts

Reddit thread goes viral after employee accused of ‘ethnically stereotyping’ ginger cat called Jorts

In a Reddit post, an employee told of how they were accused of “perpetuating ethnic stereotypes” after calling a ginger cat “dumb”.

In a twist, the now-viral post has led to the “simple” kitty winning hearts across the globe - and the moggy even has his own Twitter account now.

The kitty in question, called Jorts, is a workplace cat who often gets himself into pickles by accidentally locking himself into rooms and getting his head stuck in cups.

Posting on Reddit, the employee said that when they joked about ginger Jorts being “dumb”, a colleague accused them of “perpetuating ethnic stereotypes by saying orange cats are dumb”. The colleague also allegedly demanded that the Redditor takes part in racial sensitivity training.

The Redditor explained that Jorts lives in their workplace along with Jean, a tortoiseshell cat.

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“Simple guy” Jorts apparently can’t open doors that are ajar, and instead shoves the door whether he’s going in or out, resulting in him sometimes becoming trapped in rooms.

His colleague, who was given the pseudonym Pam, has tried to teach Jorts how to exit an ajar door for himself. Obviously, it didn’t work.

But when the Redditor put down a doorstop to prevent Jorts from slamming doors shut, Pam was outraged. She accused the original poster (OP) of depriving Jorts of the “chance to learn” and kept removing the doorstop.

Taking things a step further, Pam went so far as to “set up a series of special learning activities for Jorts” and outline them as tasks on the staff whiteboard.

They explained: “She thinks we need to teach him how to clean himself better and how to get out of minor barriers like when he gets a cup stuck on his head, etc. I love Jorts but he’s just dumb af and we can’t change that.

“Don’t get me wrong— watching her try to teach Jorts how to walk through a door is hilarious, but Jean got locked in the closet twice last week. Yesterday I installed a cat cutout thing in the door and Pam started getting really huffy.”

But things got heated when the Redditor cracked a joke at Jort’s expense.

The poster said: “I made a gentle joke about ‘you can’t expect Jean’s tortoiseshell smarts from orange cat Jorts’ which made Pam FURIOUS. She started crying and left the hallway, then sent an email to the group (including volunteers) and went home early.

“In her email Pam said I was ‘perpetuating ethnic stereotypes by saying orange cats are dumb’ and is demanding a racial sensitivity training before she will return. I don’t think it’s relevant but just in case, Pam is a white person in a mostly minority staff (and no she is not ginger/does not have red hair).”

Commenters rinsed Pam for implying you can be “racist” towards cats, with others saying they haven’t met an orange cat “that wasn’t exceedingly dumb”.

Then, shortly after the original Reddit post went up, we got an update.

They said that HR met with both themselves and Pam, and expressed concern that Pam compared ethnic stereotypes with giving a cat a doorstop. They also asked Pam to stop assigning other staff “Jorts-related tutoring”, as it is “not appropriate for Pam to assign others work”.

Pam was apparently upset that the Redditor seems to favour Jean, which the original poster admitted they did, before adding: “Some of these things are fair. Jorts deserves respect as a member of our team.”

They went on to say that the cats are so well respected that, to keep Jean and Jorts safe, five unvaccinated employees were not allowed near them. Amazingly, this was enough to win over four of them to go and get the vaccine. The company’s clients also love the moggies, with the Redditor remarking: “Both cats truly are doing important work. Truly Jorts deserves to be treated with respect.

“We all deserve to be treated with dignity at work, so I will apologise to Jorts about some things that were insensitive or disrespectful.”

To make up for the favouritism, the Redditor has committed to getting Jorts a nice new bed with his name on it. They will also apologise to Jorts, and remove the sign that says “Days since Jorts had a trash can mishap” due to his penchant for tipping over the office bins.

They will also update Jorts’ staff bio to include a picture of him, instead of the image of a sweet potato that is currently used to depict him.

And the cats will be under the care of the original poster from now on, as the cats “are [their] staff”.

As for Pam? Unbelievably, she’s had to be told “NOT to apply margarine to any of her coworkers” after admitting to putting margarine on the cat in an attempt to teach him to groom himself. Sadly, this led to poor Jean developing the runs.

The OP added: “Jean has shown she is willing to be in charge of helping Jorts stay clean. If this task becomes onerous for Jean, we can have a groomer help. I am crying laughing typing this.”

Jorts became so popular that the Redditor made the cats their very own Twitter account, where Jean has suggested they join a union:

Twitter is head over heels for the cat, with one suggesting Jorts should have been Time’s Person of the Year instead of Elon Musk:

Others commended the way the cats encouraged their colleagues to get vaccinated:

Some also shared pictures of their own cats in solidarity:

We’ll admit, we’re not entirely sure how convinced we are that all of this actually happened, but we certainly enjoyed it nonetheless.

Jorts for PM.

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