I spent a while researching the kind of programs that schools would implement as part of their institution to teach men how to respect women. After a couple of hours, I came to the sad conclusion that there are not as many as there should be. The rugby team on my campus has an annual “Walk A Mile in Her Shoes,” which most spectator go to watch the men struggle in heels. The walk is to raise awareness about on campus sexual assault. Its aim is to spark the conversation that it is up to them to put a stop to sexual assault. It is an excellent idea but I fear it might be executed poorly. Showing respect for women should not start in college but at a much younger age. Young boys and girls should learn and understand that no means no. As a culture we can teach our young male population that being disrespectful to women does not equate to power.
Living in the world at present is very difficult. It seems that the entire population has forgotten what it truly means to be human. One of the most pressing and depressing issues we are confronted with today is the lack of respect for women.
Cat-calling, slut-shaming and victim-blaming appears to have become the norm. Our society has condoned, if not encouraged the commodification as well as the objectification of women. We mindlessly dish out pieces of advice to women in terms of their clothes, language, and behavior. But we fail to consider the role of men in this problem.
Several non – profit organizations like Our Watch, National Center for Fathering and Stop Street Harassment, and colleges such as the University of Melbourne and Navitas Professional Institute have risen up to the challenge of instilling gender equality in the minds of people. These institutions are anchoring their campaign on the basic values of humanity and kindness. They believe that instead of putting women further down, we should teach men to respect women. They are advocating for fair treatment and equal opportunity for women. It is their hope that through education and awareness, we will be able to end this culture of sexism.