Understanding sexual consent: easy as 1, 2, tea
When it comes to sex, consent is EVERYTHING.
UK designers Emmeline May and Blue Seat Studios came up with a brilliant way to explain sexual consent using that most British of traditions: offering someone a nice cup of tea. Although they first published it last year, it's rising up again in conversation due to #20MinutesOfAdvocacy.
We shouldn't have to keep explaining what rape is, and what consent is, but apparently people like convicted Stanford rapist Brock Turner think the rules don't apply to them. Here goes nothing.
It's pretty simple. Say you offer to make someone a cup of tea. If they say "Oh yeah, I'd love a cup of tea!" it's all good.
But if they don't want tea, you don't force them to drink tea anyway.
Even if they said yes earlier, but then changed their mind. That doesn't mean tea is bad; it just means they don't want any right now, and that should be respected.
Over time, their level of interest in tea can change. What if they aren't thirsty right now?
Unconscious people DEFINITELY don't want tea. You can do serious harm to an unconscious person if you try to make them drink. DON'T DO IT.
Also, just because someone said yes to tea last week doesn't give you the right to keep showing up with tea every day. Just like you, some days they want tea, and some days they don't. In all cases, no one should be forced to drink any tea they don't want or aren't conscious to drink.
Now substitute "sex" for all instances of "tea," and you have a winner.
NYC mayor Bill de Blasio is one of many going all in on #20MinutesofAdvocacy on Twitter, and raising awareness of how important it is to take rape and sexual assault seriously.