Is It Possible To Legislate Respect?

Kansas City just became the latest in a list of cities considering a law against street harassment that would encompass everything from catcalls to drivers forcing bicyclists off the road.  Clearly, harassment is a crime, but is it possible to legislate respect?

turning-the-tables-on-sexism-300x245The abuse discussed in HuffPo’s article Kansas City Might Outlaw Catcalling shows how cities (five other cities have anti-harassment laws) are getting desperate to stop harassers from intimidating women from walking, jogging, even taking their kids to school.  Men are subject to harassment as well, but females are the overwhelming recipients of this abuse.

While I appreciate Kansas City’s efforts, these law would be hard to enforce without an eye witness.  Respect must be taught, learned and experienced.  Until those who treat others like objects are on the receiving end of the abuse, harassment and disrespect they dish out, how can they truly get what that feels like to others.  Respectful persons would never be guilty of this behavior in the first place.

Jerry and I cover the waterfront and discuss whether such a law would work and what else can be do… (click on audio below)

And we top it off with a fabulous video my best friend shared with me… “Girl in the Country Song,” was written by teen singer songwriters, Maddie and Tae.  The video has been viewed over eight million times and turns the tables on lyrics of male country stars who yearn for no-name arm candy dressed in painted-on shorts.

Maddie and Tae’s song is a perfect example of showing rather than telling — putting guys on the receiving end of objectifying treatment, with hilarious results.  Watch and enjoy!


Originally published at Anita Finlay’s blog.  Reposted, in full, with permission of the author.



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