I knew Mike Rinder for well over ten years. He had a certain way of laughing, sarcastic and cutting, and always at someone else’s expense.
One night he was driving home from the office and I was in his car. He stopped at a gas station as the tank was nearing empty. The attendant, a Black man, walked out to service us and fill up the tank. He was a nice man, polite and helpful. But he seemed to be limping and had a bit of a hard time moving around.
Mike, for no reason other than it seemed to give him pleasure, made a derogatory remark about the man behind his back and then gave his sarcastic laugh. I won’t repeat what he said. It was disgusting. I was offended and shocked he would say such a thing about someone who was suffering from an obvious physical difficulty, but doing his job and genuinely trying to be helpful.
But in truth, this behavior was consistent with how Mike treated others like lower-level human beings—and notably women. He had no warmth for people, so cutting and degrading remarks were his response to them. If you had the bad luck to be around him for any length of time, you experienced this.
Basically he was arrogant and seemed unaware that other people really existed. The way he saw it, they were inferior (to him), especially if they were women or were Black.