While it’s true that we need to be mindful of the unwanted touch, we also need to be mindful not to feed further the already-strong element of terror that pertains to all aspects of physical intimacy in the USA. The French, for example, kiss each other on each cheek upon meeting and parting; it’s an accepted way to connect and I’ve never seen this abused. Not surprisingly, most French people are far more comfortable with themselves and intimate behaviors than most US citizens.
Our brains are hardwired to reason not from data but from anecdote. That’s why people imagine airplanes are more dangerous than automobiles, even though the precise opposite is true. We remember the single airplane disaster while forgetting the thousands of automobile crashes — they’re such a daily occurrence the media doesn’t bother with them so they are “out of mind.”
The same thing is happening with simple touch in the USA. Because of the media focus on a statistically small number of cases of abuse, everyone is now hyper-terrified of all touch unless the necessary consent paperwork has been submitted in triplicate, reviewed by a team of attorneys, notarized, and registered with the relevant authorities along with a videotape of the deposition.
I’m not sure this sends a healthy or realistic message to our children.