In this post-MeToo stage, still a common rebuttal to allegations is ‘if this is sexual harassment, then I have been harassed too.’ The sad reality is coercion and threats are romanticised and normalised in cinema and cultures. During these times, it’s important for people, who have been conditioned by this very culture, to unlearn and relearn conduct and misconduct.
1. If you ask them, ‘hey you want a cup of tea’ and they go ‘yes, I would love a cup of tea’, then you know they WANT to have tea.
2. If they say I am not really sure, don’t MAKE them drink the tea.
Just because you made it doesn’t mean you are entitled to watch them drink the tea.
3. If they say, ‘no, thank you’, then don’t make them tea at all. Don’t get annoyed at them for not wanting tea. They just don’t want tea.
4. If they initially say yes to tea, and after you make it for them, they change their mind, they remain under no obligation to drink the tea.
5. If they are unconscious, don’t make them tea. Unconscious people don’t want tea. And they can’t answer the question, ‘do you want tea?’
6. They may be conscious when you asked them, but by the time you prepared the tea, they are now unconscious. Just put the tea down.
7. If someone said yes to tea, started drinking it, but then passed out during it, don’t keep pouring it down their throat.
8. If someone said yes to tea last Saturday, they don’t expect you to come around their house with your tea and force them to drink it.
This animation by Rachel Briana and video by Blue Seat Studios ends with this simple but important message-
If you can understand how ludicrous it is to force people to drink tea, when they don’t want tea, and you are able to understand when they don’t want tea, then how hard it is to understand when it comes to sex? Whether it is tea or sex, consent is everything.
No means no. ‘I don’t know’ means no. No response means no. Only an enthusiastic ‘yes’ means yes.
You can watch the video here-
Images are screenshots of this video.