I don’t want little girls to hear casual hateful comments about what women can and cannot do, because those comments have the potential to be tremendously damaging. And I don’t want little boys to hear that it’s not okay to be gay. I don’t want children of colour or nonwhite children to encounter casual racism that’s never refuted or sternly opposed. Not just because it’s wrong on its face, but because people should know that there is no requirement to be nice and passive in the face of people doing and saying offensive things. They don’t need to play nice for people who don’t respect them or people like them, and the earlier they learn that, the better.
Talk back to sexism, for the children, if not for yourself. Because every time a kid hears a sexist argument refuted, that lesson gets absorbed.