News flash: It turns out showing your bare bottom to your employer is not a smart idea. Last week, the Illinois Appellate Court turned down a Chicago-based investment banker’s appeal against being fired for mooning. Jason Selch had sued Bank of America, arguing the gesture wasn’t sufficient grounds for termination.
Selch reportedly dropped his pants after he heard the news of his company ‘s merger with a Bank of America subsidiary. Enraged, he stormed into a conference room and, after establishing he didn’t have a non-compete clause, mooned two stunned company executives. While his supervisor would have kept him on with a warning, Bank of America CEO Keith Banks reportedly insisted on firing Selch for his “egregious” behaviour, according to court documents.
In 2010, Williams Miller, a volunteer assistant football coach at Boys and Girls High School in Brooklyn, New York, was fired for publicly mooning fans. (Although technically, because he was a volunteer, he was merely banned from the field.)
Protest mooning, it seems, is not just an American pastime. When defending a Brisbane man for mooning a police car a decade ago, Australian lawyer Eugene O’Sullivan called the gesture a “mild” political act protected under the implied constitutional freedoms. Mooning “is of a political nature when it is directed at an authority figure,” O’Sullivan argued, adding that the gesture should be considered a national icon.
Last year, while touring Australia, Queen Elizabeth II was mooned by a Brisbane construction worker. A decade earlier, her London residence, Buckingham Palace was the site of a republican mass mooning. The coordinated act of defiance failed to topple the monarchy.
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