Yesterday, Erykah Badu voiced her opinion on a sensitive topic that many women feel isn’t even up for debate, but in the midst of having spur-of-the-moment reactions, it seems a large majority have missed a very important message she was trying to make plain.

The context of Erykah’s tweets are linked to a recent incident at a New Zealand high school where a school principal called a group of female students into his office and told them to lower the hem line on their skirts to knee-level in order to “keep our girls safe, stop boys from getting ideas and create a good work environment for male staff,” according to The Guardian. Upon learning of the article, Erykah took to her personal Twitter account to, in so many words, voice her agreement with the principal’s recommendation to the girls.

Per usual, Twitter exploded with reactions from fans who vehemently disagreed with Erykah’s stance and felt that her comments were perpetuating the idea that the burden of responsibility to prevent excessive harassment or even rape from men falls on women and young girls. The idea that young women should feel stifled in how they are free to dress if they wish to avoid being potentially targeted by men who can’t….or won’t…control themselves is bogus, but criticizing women who wish to take that precaution or train their daughters to do so is equally as outrageous. In reality, we as a society should be placing a balanced focus on teaching our young boys and alerting our young girls to the harsh realities of the world in which we live as it is, not as we’d like it to be.

In an idealistic society, young boys would be so consistently taught to practice unwavering self control from a young age that they wouldn’t even develop the mindset as men to allow the way a woman is dressed to dictate the level of respect they show her. Unfortunately, as Erykah made clear, the reality of our culture is such that we still have quite a ways to go before this type of moral education reaches such a priority level that this hope becomes a reality. While this doesn’t mean that we should stop striving to reach such a goal and should certainly continue seeking to make shaping more of our young boys into men who will inevitably be the ones to bring about the very change so many of us wish was our reality, teaching our young girls to protect themselves while the work is still in progress is just as vital.