Faye Arcand is a freelance writer living in the South Okanagan.

Faye Arcand is a freelance writer living in the South Okanagan.

Auntie Says: There is so many things to talk about

Faye Arcand is a freelance writer living in the South Okanagan

I’m feeling rather disjointed this week. So many thoughts have my brain racing in a million different directions.

First off, let me tell you that I’m not a big fan of politics, it’s too divisive. I prefer to see people as individuals with different ideas and values, some I agree with and others I don’t. Politics, both here and in the U.S., have been front and centre like never before. Many issues have been polarizing while at the same time generating great discussions and debates.

Related: Auntie Says – A little respect please

This last year has seen such a huge swing in social consciousness with things like the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements but one thing I think we can all agree on (or I hope we can), is the need for mutual respect of our fellow human beings — regardless of political, religious or social standing.

Respect means having regard for the other person’s right to be who they are and believe what they want to believe. Recently it seems like respect has been lost in the mainstream and needs to be brought back to the forefront. There’s confusion over the idea of judgement passed simply because of political or social ideologies. To me it’s ludicrous, to assume a whole group is evil or wrong because they’re called conservatives or liberals — or whatever. It makes me shake my head in wonder.

Related: Auntie Says: Mind your own business

Another thing, I keep hearing is that men are now afraid of complimenting a woman for fear of being accused of sexism or they’re anxious that a kiss they gave a girlfriend 20 years ago could now be misconstrued as assault. Look up the definition of assault to see if your behaviour applies. The thing is that if you actually have questions then you may already have your answer. Ask yourself: if that same behaviour was perpetrated on your sister, mother, auntie, granny, wife or girlfriend, what would you think? To me that’s always a good measure and yes we’re all responsible for our actions — past and present.

And let’s consider the old ‘boys will be boys’ attitude. The shift in voice and power will become more equal over time and this is a good thing. In my opinion, its long overdue. Change will be met with resistance and obstacles, but it will happen. It’s started already.

Related: Auntie Says: The tradition of the sunset party continues

The idea of boys will be boys perpetuates the notion that males will, and do, engage in risky and sometimes hateful behaviour because it’s natural and instinctive to their gender and therefore they don’t need to be responsible. What a load of crap and in my opinion it really doesn’t give boys much credit for being able to use their brain or recognize that they do know how to make good decisions.

Related: Auntie Says: The tradition of the sunset party continues

Boys and men are not the enemy and they’re not stupid or so impulsive that they can’t control themselves. We all have choice and the ‘boys will be boys’ mentality really is an insult to them. More respect needs to be demanded by boys because they’re being pigeonholed as impulsive brutes.

Then there’s the whole thing about sexual misconduct at parties, work, or just life in general. Remember, no means no. Consent is required. Whether male or female. Whether 15 or 50.

Phew. So much to think about and consider. So many discussion to have. We live in exciting times.

Faye Arcand is a freelance writer who lives in the South Okanagan. Reach her at faye.arcand@icloud.com or www.fayeearcand.com.

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