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Arts & Life

Dads need to teach sons to respect women by example, blogger says


Elliot Rodger's shooting rampage near the University of California Santa Barbara campus claimed the lives of seven people, including his own.

His hate-filled videos and "manifesto" expressed a sense of male sexual entitlement that struck a deep chord with women around the world.

Almost immediately after the May 23 shooting rampage in Isla Vista, women took to Twitter to share and vent about their experiences with sexual fear, harassment and sexual assault.

#YesAllWomen has been exploding since it erupted May 24.

Women are sharing thoughts such as:"#YesAllWomen because apparently the clothes I wear is a more valid form of consent than the words I say".

And from Aimee Mann: "The cops who asked me,"well, what were you wearing?" when I reported an attack and attempted rape.#YesAllWomen"

Stateside wanted to get the thoughts on #YesAllWomen from a dad. How should dads be talking to their sons? How can dads help today's women feel more secure around men?

Doug French is the co-founder of the Dad 2.0 Summit, and co-creator (with his ex-wife) of the blog "When the Flames Go Up", about co-parenting after divorce.

French said he was very surprised by the tweets. “I had no idea,” he said.

French added that dads should be talking with their sons about the issue, so that when they become men they will respect women. However, he said that just talking will not suffice.

“You can talk to your kids as much as possible about this sort of thing, but the thing that trumps that is example and the sheer quantity of examples that they see,” French said.

He added that where the dads can come in is stopping the systemic misogyny that is learned.

“One of my favorite tweets is the tweet that said, ‘I started reading #YesAllWomen because I have a daughter. But it became more apparent that it’s more important because I have two sons,’” French said.  

*Listen to full interview above.