EDITORIAL ROUNDUP

Thankfully, Exxon will offer more info about impact of climate change on business

The following editorial was published in the Dallas Morning News:

(TNS) Exxon Mobil recently announced plans to begin disclosing more details about how climate change could affect its business.

The Irving, Texas, oil giant said in a regulatory filing it will offer shareholders more information about how changes in global demand for energy and policies to reduce carbon dioxide emissions could impact the company’s bottom line.

A group of shareholders has been calling for these types of disclosures for years, but Exxon, once a climate change denier, maintained that forecasts of what that means for shareholders were impossible to make.

Exxon’s move shows that limits to carbon dioxide emissions are serious and cannot be ignored. We applaud this transparency.

Sex education in schools should cover consent

The following editorial was published in the Seattle Times:

(TNS) As the #MeToo movement has unearthed myriad accounts of sexual assaults and unwanted advances, several of the accused — from Harvey Weinstein to Charlie Rose — have said they believed the encounters were consensual.

False accusations of sexual assault are statistically rare. But putting that aside, saying these acts were consensual is a convenient defense that overlooks what could have been a simple solution: If unsure whether someone wants to engage in sexual activity, just ask.

Putting this into practice may be awkward for some. But that is exactly why young people need to learn how to communicate about sexual consent earlier in life — at home and in the classroom.

Public schools in King County are on the right track by incorporating lessons about affirmative sexual consent into their curricula, as reported in a recent Seattle Times article. By emphasizing that students should ask for and receive a “yes” before proceeding with sex, rather than stopping only if their partner says “no,” schools can combat cultural influences that contribute to sexual assaults. These include gender norms that encourage men to be sexual “conquerors” while discouraging women from speaking up.

This “yes means yes” model also teaches students that if someone is too intoxicated to say yes, they cannot consent to sex — a point that cannot be emphasized enough.

Studies have found that a person’s understanding of consent relates to how likely they are to commit sexually aggressive acts. Addressing the topic in school not only makes sense, it is long overdue.

Parents should be having these conversations with their children, too. Given how much confusion still seems to surround the concept of sexual consent, discussing it more — and earlier — can only make things clearer.

“No” always means “no.” But we must also teach our young people to check in with their partners to ensure they are actually saying “yes.”

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Posted by Tribune News Services

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