18 Mar 2021
Protect your Daughter or Educate your Son?
When a news item breaks, social media becomes a challenge.
‘Socials’ have given people a platform to voice their immediate response, thoughts and feelings. Sometimes that may seem counterproductive, depending on the issue at hand. However, this can also create moments that make you pause and reflect.
This image found it’s way across feeds in the wake of Sarah Everard’s story, and those giving voice to their experience.
It stopped me in my timeline scroll.
As the reporting on Sarah Everard’s story progresses, and the narrative on what it means evolves, this image made it clear to me the practical next steps I could take to achieve a real difference in our future.
Perhaps it’s in the timing, as the father of a two and a half-year old son.
Maybe it’s in how my view of what ‘privilege’ means has changed, accelerated even, over the last two years. Being confronted with your own privilege can cause distress. Distress can lead to becoming defensive, completely shutting ourselves out of a change in view that - however slight - could prove revolutionary.
Before seeing this image I had spent moments evaluating my past, thinking of what I would change - replaying scenarios to understand how I could make things better.
Self reflection is a good thing. However;
This image made me realise that after thought, action is what’s needed.
I have an opportunity to educate my son. Not just in childhood or adolescence, but for the rest of my time with him.
I can lead by example in being respectful to all. Show how we can be led by principle, and to listen but not allow influences to make us react without due consideration for what’s right. Be brave and call out sexism. Support others who do the same.
I won’t always be perfect, but I can make it my mission to always try.
There’s a time for reflection, thought and analysis. Seeing this image gave me a moment of clarity for what’s to happen next: action.
Social media can be a challenge. It can also inspire us to take action.