Why Erykah Badu’s Opinion Is Dangerous
Dominique Matti

While I appreciate where the author is coming from — empowering women from an early age — I believe that how you dress and speak says a lot about what you understand about the power you have. As an adolescent you need to learn boundaries and consequences to decisions. The reality is that while it is other people’s job to be respectful and upstanding, in practice the culture and individuals fail us at every turn. My teenager dressing in provocative ways will entice unwanted attention. That is a fact. It’s not fair and it will take time to change perceptions. However, I don’t want my teenage daughter on the front lines of that battle. It’s our jobs as adults to make the changes that make our environment more safe and equitable. As a young teenager I had a similar conversation with my Dad about women’s bodies — what to look for and count as attractive-that still makes me uncomfortable and sad. I will change things by not repeating that kind of messaging to my family and friends.