Consent is not a child's game

Tuesday November 11 2014
by Serena

A few weeks ago we received a seriously quality video in our submission box -- Made by the talented Marina Mersi and Jess Dellabarca. They survey various high school students, as well as various organisations around New Zealand about their thoughts on consent.

What's so fantastic and ground-breaking to me about this video is that throughout my education, I and my peers have never been taught about the idea of consent. Health class was when condoms were put on bananas, "STDs are bad", and a LOT of reading from Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul. The idea that sexual consent is something that is enthusiastically and continually given was never even touched on.

The then-academic-now-buzzworded concept of rape culture is extremely hard to address -- especially within New Zealand's laid-back, 'she'll be right' lifestyle. But if there's anywhere to address it, sex education in schools is the ideal place to start. Especially because it will most likely be preventative, and teen brains are so much more well equipped to question the society around us. As adults, we become so entrenched in the culture we grew up with that it makes it very hard for us to question anything without years and years of bias.

We don't know who submitted this video to us, but to them and Marina and Jess: we request the highest of fives. I hope high schools all around the world can too have these extremely important conversations, and I'm so happy that these conversations are happening.▼

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