So if you speak to a woman who is otherwise occupied, you’re sending a subtle message. It is that your desire to interact trumps her right to be left alone. If you pursue a conversation when she’s tried to cut it off, you send a message. It is that your desire to speak trumps her right to be left alone. And each of those messages indicates that you believe your desires are a legitimate reason to override her rights.
We need to teach our sons that no means no. And that silence means no. And that drunkenness means no. And that being passed out means no. And that “I don’t know” or “I’m not sure” or “maybe we shouldn’t do this” means no.
We need to teach our sons that women and girls are actual people. They’re not just bodies. They’re not just holes. They’re not inanimate objects to be used at will.
We need to teach our sons that degrading women isn’t funny in any context.
NBC News captures St. Peter’s Square, then and now.