If you are interviewing the Chairwoman of General Motors (Mary Barra) there are a thousand great questions to ask. Matt Lauer had this opportunity earlier this week. He could have asked how does a major auto defect go overlooked for more than 5 years? Why is it that the NTHSA had to point out the problem before you took action? Why is it that GM cars aren’t the best cars in the world? Why isn’t the Cadillac better than the Lexus or the BMW or the Mercedes? When is GM going to invest in the American worker since most of GM’s profits are made here in the US? Unfortunately, Matt Lauer decided to steer away from thoughtful questions and ask some really, really offensive question about how much time she is spending with her kids.
The actual question was –
“You’re a mom, I mentioned, two kids, you said in an interview not long ago that your kids said they’re going to hold you accountable for one job, and that is being a mom,” he said. “Given the pressure at General Motors, can you do both well?”
His blantantly offensive statements don’t stop there. There was this jewel also –
“I want to tread lightly here, but you’ve heard it, you’ve heard it in Congress and you’ve heard it in the headlines. … But there are some people who are speculating that you got this job as a woman and as a mom because people within General Motors knew this company was in for a very tough time, and as a woman and a mom you could present a softer face and a softer image for the company as it goes through the episode [faulty parts linked to deaths],”
In the year 2014, these kind of moronic statements should be relegated to the dustbin of history.