Fired For Being “Irresistible”

“IF SHE SAW HIS PANTS BULGING, SHE WOULD KNOW HER CLOTHING WAS TOO REVEALING” By Shelby Chiasson || Remember that time when we believed women were finally equals in this male-dominated world? Oh wait, never mind. Last month the Iowa Supreme Court ruled a dentist could fire his employee because…

sexy dentist


Shelby Chiasson

By Shelby Chiasson || Remember that time when we believed women were finally equals in this male-dominated world?

Oh wait, never mind.

Last month the Iowa Supreme Court ruled a dentist could fire his employee because he found her too attractive. Dr. James H. Knight apparently found the beauty of one of his dental assistants, Melissa Nelson, comparable to that of Scarlett Johansson. The presiding judge, Justice Edward Mansfield blamed this “irresistible attraction” as the reason the man’s marriage was in jeopardy.

Sadly, this is not a joke. This is not an article of satire. The bottom line in Iowa is that yes, if your boss thinks you are smoking hot, you can be released from your position. It doesn’t matter if there is a mutual attraction. Even if your boss is a disgusting and repulsive slime ball, if he thinks you have the potential to tempt him into having an extramarital affair – you’re gone.

You’ll still be smoking hot … but you’ll be smoking hot in the unemployment line.

Both Knight and Nelson insist there was no sexual relationship, as both are married with children. Court records indicate Knight told Nelson “if she saw his pants bulging, she would know her clothing was too revealing.” She wore scrubs to work. Knight also told that Nelson her lack of a sex life was equal to “having a Lamborghini in the garage and never driving it.”

The sleaze also texted her, asking how often she had orgasms.

Wow. I think I would rather have Gargamel ask me how often I orgasmed before my boss.

After an extended period of Nelson dodging Knight’s unwanted advances, someone began to notice the activity. That someone? Knight’s wife, who also works at his office. Eventually Knight fired Nelson at his wife’s insistence. His reasoning behind the termination? That he eventually would have succumbed to his desire and had an affair with Nelson.

What does this mean for other states?

Who knows … but these idiotic justifications have been used by men for years. Maybe some men find women intimidating in the work force. Maybe some believe they will out-perform them – that their masculinity will be called into question. Nelson’s case was built on the fact she was terminated from her job based on her gender. And unfortunately she was – but only because she was hot.

Hopefully 2013 will see a reversal of this case – and this sort of ridiculousness in general. For now, though, as you try to make your way through a difficult economy – remember not to be too attractive.


Shelby Chiasson studies journalism at Winthrop University and writes The Charlestononion.

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I'llBeYourHuckleberry January 10, 2013 at 3:46 pm

So just because he may have eventually crossed the line means she had to go. How does that indicate that she would have been willing to have an affair with this douche, especially after disregarding his previous comments and texts.

This is unbelievable. How this was upheld in the Supreme Court is mind-boggling.

Original Good Old Boy January 10, 2013 at 3:50 pm

An at-will employment can be terminated at any time so long as you do not violate public policy. Public policy reasons are typically things such as age, gender, or race.

Hotness is not a protected category, so that must be a legitimate reason to fire someone in an at-will state.

@WH_Buz_Martin January 10, 2013 at 4:06 pm

Yes, but since the dentist in question is heterosexual, he would never have fired a man for that same reason, so it could be argued that it really was discrimination on the basis of gender.

Gloria Allred is annoying in the extreme, but if ever a case was perfect for her, it’s this one.

Original Good Old Boy January 10, 2013 at 5:42 pm

Some judges would likely agree with you. But not this judge, apparently.

He should have just said he didn’t like her. That would have been easier.

Sarah Palin Forever! January 10, 2013 at 4:07 pm

Hell in SC he wouldnt have evenhad to explain why he canned here!

We are an “at will ” empoyment state!

Your boss doesnt like you.

You’re gone!

Recovering Lobbyist January 14, 2013 at 5:40 pm

That statute is almost useless to most employers.

south mauldin January 10, 2013 at 4:23 pm

That crazy lady that posts here on occasion had a letter to the editor published in The State.

GreenvilleLwyr January 10, 2013 at 4:27 pm

So for an article submitted by a woman about a legal decision that many perceive as being harmful to women in the workplace, Will chooses a photo of large-breasted cleavage and calls it “sexy dentist.” Classy…

BigT January 10, 2013 at 4:29 pm

My problem with this: If there was not a reason to bash a MAN…you likely would not give a $#!*…

Liberals outrage is so selective. Four killed in Benghazi…and you scurry to defend and cover up…

The chance to scream ‘Sexism’…and you break your neck…

Sorry: but we GOT much bigger problems than liberal cliches…

If you want to fire someone you can…The court and-or Obama cannot run this man’s business…

But you want to make us pay for rubbers so she can hump like a rabbit…

Guero January 11, 2013 at 10:28 am

Three Thousand killed in the WTC and Bushites scurry to defend and cover up…

jimlewis,owb January 10, 2013 at 4:53 pm

I may be wrong but there appears to be a button on the blouse that is under tremendous pressure.

My interest is to learn the manufacturer whereby I can contact him to find out the type of thread he uses on his buttons.

Lately the red breasts have been popping my line but with the kind of thread holding that button secure I should have no problem keeping the red breasts hooked.

Any help would be appreciated

TontoBubbaGoldstein January 10, 2013 at 8:51 pm


or dynamite ….. ( Punchline to the old joke: “He looked at the game warden and said, ‘Are you going to just sit there looking stupid or are you gonna FISH?'”

Had to read it twice to “get” the redbreast reference. What could I have been thinking?

Mr. G January 10, 2013 at 4:58 pm

Discrimination or not, as the owner of the business he ought to be able to hire and fire whomever he wants for whatever reason– even a bad one.

[This, of course, assumes that there was no contract stating that the employment would stretch over a certain length of time, the contract was not breached, et cetera.]

Let the individual pay the natural consequences of his sexism [or whatever ism or ology that happends to be in disrepute at the time] via loss of business, loss of reputation, or exclusion from other places that discriminate against people who discriminate…

Southern Belle January 10, 2013 at 5:15 pm

Many facts of the case are not reported here which leads me to question the credibility of fitsnews. This report is indeed “unfair and imbalanced.” The woman who was fired was not a victim. She participated in inappropriate behavior and put her job at risk. The dentist and his assistant were exchanging verbal and non-verbal communication and an emotional relationship had developed (though not reported in this article) which often leads to a physical relationship. This isn’t rocket science.

These relationships don’t resolve with continued contact. There must be separation of the people involved. It’s common sense. The dentist owns the practice so it is logical that the woman must leave or be fired in an attempt to preserve the marriage.

Being fired is a consequence of her choices. She was fired for her inappropriate choices. But that is not a sexy title for an article. If the title reads fired for being too “irresistible” – Well now, that sells!
His consequences will be different because he owns the practice. How many women will want to be his patient now?

Aloha Steve January 14, 2013 at 2:35 pm

She intentionally did not file a sexual harassment suit for the reasons you set forth here. If this had been unwanted innuendo/texts/come-ons, the law would have protected her.

Thanks for pointing this out.

TontoBubbaGoldstein January 10, 2013 at 5:54 pm

Bet she didn’t have any trouble finding another job.

Folks is sleeze January 10, 2013 at 7:45 pm

I wonder if this guy ever pushed his beloved girlfriend into furniture and had to be restrained by court order from seeing her? Or had to resign his job because of a CDV conviction? Sound familiar?

Original Good Ole Boy January 10, 2013 at 7:57 pm

This article should have included a photo of Ms. Nelson, so we could have seen that she obviously was NOT fired for being too hot. The judge was probably offended that she would make such a claim.

? January 10, 2013 at 8:02 pm

In a truly free market it wouldn’t matter why you want to hire/fire someone…which I know bothers most here.

That being said, $10 says that the unemployment rate for “hot” women(that want a job) is far lower than ugly ones.

You may hate me for saying it, but it’s true.

Giza January 10, 2013 at 9:55 pm

I think Catherine Templeton has big tits but all pics I’ve seen of her, she’s dressed in business suits. Maybe Templeton can write an op-ed piece for this space.

Old Bike Dude January 10, 2013 at 10:08 pm

Motorboat heaven.

Andrew January 11, 2013 at 9:59 am

“You’ll still be smoking hot … but you’ll be smoking hot in the unemployment line.”

Not necessarily. Statistics show that attractive people get hired over equally qualified (or perhaps, in some instances, more qualified) but less attractive people.

I’ve never seen any “smoking hot” dental assistants in the unemployment line. But then again, I’ve never been in the unemployment line. Maybe I’m smoking hot . . . SWEET!

Scooter January 13, 2013 at 6:44 pm

Had she come to work looking like that, I would have sent her home to change.

slickrick January 14, 2013 at 2:34 pm

this is what any state is headed for with republican leadership….she should have not been born SO attractive…

Recovering Lobbyist January 14, 2013 at 5:43 pm

I was fired once. Must have been because I am attractive.

Scooter January 14, 2013 at 9:53 pm

She is nothing to get excited about.


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