Millenials are pretty kick-ass at changing societal norms.
Once we've set our mind to standing up for something, we're pretty hard to turn away. With the power of social media at our fingertips and a pretty serious desire to have our voices taken seriously, we're willing to move mountains if we thinks it's important. We've challenged gender norms, racist tendencies, and showed the world that we won't stand for things we consider outdated. Leaving me with one plea: let's be the generation to nix the catcalling.
It wasn't cute when it started (I assume this began sometime in the 18th century when a suit-wearing man yelled "nice ankles" at a woman from his buggy), and it sure isn't cute now.
While cat-calling may seem harmless, it's far from that for a number of reasons. One, catcalling makes women feel objectified for doing things like walking, breathing, and trying to get where they need to go for the day. There a million times when it's perfectly acceptable to give someone an appropriate compliment...but unsolicited from your passing car just isn't one of them. Two, catcalling promotes the idea that women are simply there to be enjoyed by men, and as heartbreaking as this may be to some: that's not what women are here for. It never has been our purpose, and it never will be. Three, catcalling literally never goes like this: "You seem like you have a great personality and I'd love to get to know you better" (advanced apologies if you're "the one person who actually catcalls like this"); catcalling usually focuses only on superficial wants and desires. Four, catcalling is uncomfortable. It makes the person being catcalled feel weird, it makes the people around them privvy to things they probably don't want to hear, and it often doesn't stop at just a rude remark. Slowing down, pulling over and even approaching someone that you don't know seem to have become part of the territory...and it's unsafe territory. It's never acceptable to approach someone you don't know (or do know) with the intention of saying something that will deliberately put them in an awkward situation.
Last, but certainly not least, cat-calling just doesn't work. I'm really not sure when the perception arose that women love being harrased by random men on the street, but I've never once heard a "how we met" story that began with: "Well one day I was on my way to work and this cutie here yelled inappropriate things at me without my consent...and the rest is history". If that sounded silly, it's because it is. Noone, and I mean noone, finds it flattering or genuinely attractive when a grown-ass man screams at them when they walk past.
Moral of this story: the next time you consider cat-calling someone you find attractive, consider the alternatives. Tell them a funny pun, serenade them with a song, give them a flower you picked from the side of the road; really do just about anything other than yell, whistle or stare lewdly at them. The generation that has adressed just about every issue under the sun can most definitely be the generation that learns some new techniques.