John Legend says that 'we have the responsibility to do better as men' when it comes to sexual harassment

John Legend says men have to do better when it comes to standing up for women as the conversation of sexual harassment and sexual assault continues to evolve.

The musician recently opened up to AOL Entertainment about his mission with AXE to encourage young men to embody inclusive masculinity, when the conversation turned to the bombshell sexual harassment revelations continuing to come out in Hollywood.

SEE ALSO: John Legend says touring with Chrissy Teigen and daughter Luna is 'much more fun'

"First of all, sexism is awful and affects people all the time in the workplace and school and in so many other circumstances," he told us over the phone. "What we’re seeing right now with the conversation around sexual assault and harassment is crucial. This really needs to change, because it affects so many people -- particularly women -- and it’s perpetrated the vast majority by men. We have a responsibility to do better as men. Hopefully we can improve the way that young men are thinking and behaving in regards to that."

In addition to encouraging men to be better when it comes to the treatment and support of women, Legend is also hoping to inspire young men to express themselves more freely as he teams with AXE's Find Your Magic Initiative to help expand the idea of what it means to be a man. 

See photos of John Legend:

44 PHOTOS
John Legend out and about
See Gallery
John Legend out and about
COLUMBUS, OH - OCTOBER 17: John Legend performs on stage at the AXE Senior Orientation on October 17, 2017, at Centennial High School, Columbus City Schools in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images for Axe)
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 15: John Legend is seen at Los Angeles International Airport on October 15, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by BG022/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LISBON, PORTUGAL - OCTOBER 14: Singer John Legend performs in concert at Meo Arena on October 14, 2017 in Lisbon, Portugal. (Photo by Carlos Rodrigues/Redferns)
PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 04: John Legend performs at AccorHotels Arena on October 4, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by David Wolff - Patrick/Redferns)
PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 04: Singer John Legend is seen on October 4, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Marc Piasecki/GC Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 03: Chrissy Teigen and John Legend attend the Miu Miu aftershow party as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2018 at Boum Boum on October 3, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Dominique Charriau/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 13: Chrissy Teigen and John Legend seen leaving a hotel with their daughter Luna on September 13, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Neil Mockford/GC Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 12: John Legend and Chrissy Teigen with their daughter Luna, seen heading out to lunch on September 12, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Neil Mockford/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 24: Chrissy Teigen and John Legend are seen at LAX on August 24, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Niceguy/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 23: (L-R) John Legend and Hunter Klugkist speak onstage at the announcement of the AXE Senior Orientation program on August 23, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for Axe)
LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 13: Chrissy Teigen and John Legend attend the 5th annual Beautycon festival at Los Angeles Convention Center on August 13, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 11: Singer-songwriter John Legend practices yoga before surprising an unsuspecting mom in a class to introduce Capri Sun All Natural Ingredient and No Sugar Added products on August 11, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Capri Sun)
LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 10: John Legend attends INTERMIX x A.L.C 'On Duty' Launch Dinner with Chrissy Teigen at Jon and Vinny's on August 10, 2017 in Los Angeles, Californi (Photo by Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for INTERMIX x A.L.C)
NEWPORT, RI - JULY 22: John Legend and Chrissy Teigen look on during the Tennis Hall of Fame induction ceremonies at the International Tennis Hall of Fame on July 22, 2017 in Newport, Rhode Island. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images for the International Tennis Hall of Fame)
NEW ORLEANS, LA - JUNE 30: John Legend performs onstage at the 2017 ESSENCE Festival Presented By Coca Cola at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on June 30, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Erika Goldring/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, LA - JUNE 30: Singer-songwriter John Legend poses in the press room at the 2017 ESSENCE Festival Presented By Coca Cola at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on June 30, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for 2017 ESSENCE Festival)
John Legend and Chrissy Teigen attend the 2017 Tony Awards - Red Carpet at Radio City Music Hall on June 11, 2017 in New York City. / AFP PHOTO / ANGELA WEISS (Photo credit should read ANGELA WEISS/AFP/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JUNE 6: With the help of mother Chrissy Teigen, center, and father John Legend, Luna Stephens throws out the ceremonial first pitch to Robinson Cano #22 of the Seattle Mariners before a game between the Minnesota Twins and the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field on June 6, 2017 in Seattle, Washington. The Mariners won the game 12-3. (Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - MAY 21: Singer John Legend arrives at the 2017 Billboard Music Awards at T-Mobile Arena on May 21, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
LAS VEGAS, NV - MAY 21: Recording artist John Legend performs onstage during the 2017 Billboard Music Awards at T-Mobile Arena on May 21, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/BBMA2017/Getty Images for dcp)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 09: Singer/Songwriter John Legend speaks onstage during the 4th Annual Town & Country Philanthropy Summit at Hearst Tower on May 9, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Town & Country)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 08: Singer John Legend speaks during Close Rikers & Free America: Power Of The People discussion at The New School on May 8, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 01: Chrissy Teigen and John Legend attend 'Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Gar�ns:Art of the In-Between' Costume Institute Gala at Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 1, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Jackson Lee/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 29: Singer John Legend performs at the MOCA Gala 2017 honoring Jeff Koons at The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA on April 29, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Donato Sardella/Getty Images for MOCA)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 27: John Legend is seen at LAX on April 27, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by starzfly/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 26: Chrissy Teigen and John Legend are seen walking in Soho on April 26, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Raymond Hall/GC Images)
NEW YORK - APRIL 25: The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and guest John Legend, Kelly Osbourne, Dr John during Tuesday's 4/25/20 show. (Photo by Scott Kowalchyk/CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 25: John Legend attends the 2017 Time 100 Gala at Jazz at Lincoln Center on April 25, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 25: John Legend, Chrissy Teigen, Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds attend 2017 Time 100 Gala at Jazz at Lincoln Center on April 25, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for TIME)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 23: John Legend attends the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival 'Rainbow Crow' premier party at the Top of the Standard on April 23, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by CJ Rivera/Getty Images for Baobab Studios)
PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 25: Singer John Legend attends the Disneyland Paris 25th Anniversary at Disneyland Paris on March 25, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Marc Piasecki/Getty Images)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 14: John Legend at the Power Stylists Dinner, hosted by The Hollywood Reporter and Jimmy Choo, on March 14, 2017 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Donato Sardella/Getty Images for The Hollywood Reporter)
INGLEWOOD, CA - MARCH 05: Musician John Legend speaks onstage at the 2017 iHeartRadio Music Awards which broadcast live on Turner's TBS, TNT, and truTV at The Forum on March 5, 2017 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for iHeartMedia)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 02: Model Chrissy Teigen and singer John Legend arrive at the Los Angeles Premiere of 'Beauty and the Beast' at El Capitan Theatre on March 2, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 02: John Legend is seen on March 02, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by gotpap/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 28: John Legend and Chrissy Teigen are seen on February 28, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by wowcelebritytv/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Model Chrissy Teigen (L) and musician John Legend arrive at the 89th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood & Highland Center on February 26, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Dan MacMedan/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 26: John Legend arrives at the 89th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood & Highland Center on February 26, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
US singer John Legend waves after he performed at the 89th Oscars on February 26, 2017 in Hollywood, California. / AFP / Mark RALSTON (Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 19: John Legend performs at the 66th NBA All-Star Game at Smoothie King Center on February 19, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 16: Singer/songwriter John Legend attends the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2017 launch event at Center415 Event Space on February 16, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Jim Spellman/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 16: (L-R) Chrissy Teigen, John Legend, and Aly Raisman attend Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2017 NYC launch event at Center415 Event Space on February 16, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for Sports Illustrated)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 14: Model Chrissy Teigen and musician John Legend attend 'Stayin' Alive: A GRAMMY Salute To The Music Of The Bee Gees' on February 14, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/WireImage)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

When we spoke to him, the 38-year-old singer was at Centennial High School in Columbus, Ohio, gearing up for AXE Senior Orientation, where he was having a conversation with high school students alongside masculinity expert Carlos Andrés Gómez.

"We could really affect the conversation when it comes to a lot of the issues we're talking about in the press today that have to do with politics and culture and society and criminal justice. If we could have an impact on this issue early on with young people, it could really change the way they move in the world and make it better for all of us," he explained of his mission.

SEE ALSO: Daya explains how her latest single, 'New,' represents 'a huge step forward' for her

"It's cool when people with social capital use it to make the world more free and loving and empathetic," he continued. "I feel like we're giving these young people that chance."

Legend explained that, when it comes to expansive and varied ideas of what it means to be a man, he was at an advantage growing up by having a handful of mentors that encouraged him to create and express himself through his art. His father, who worked in a factory and did "stereotypical manly things," also crafted his own clothing and designed various things around their home growing up. In addition, his musical mentors helped him to get more in touch with his emotions.

"You can't be an artist if you're afraid of your emotions," he told us. "It was a struggle for me. When I was younger, I wanted to feel like I was invincible and completely in control. As I evolved as an artist and as a writer and as a person, I realized that part of the beauty of art is when you allow yourself to be vulnerable, let your emotions come through and actually feel things, so you can write about them."

"If you open yourself up to that, it can create a lot of beauty for your art."

RELATED: See photos of John Legend's daughter, Luna:

59 PHOTOS
Luna Legend, daughter of John Legend and Chrissy Teigen
See Gallery
Luna Legend, daughter of John Legend and Chrissy Teigen
Oh you cheeky face with my same squinty eye!!
❤️
Last day of cookbook shooting!! ❤️❤️❤️ to @aubriepick @monicarosestyle @1maryphillips @laurapolko @patrickta @jenatkinhair @adeenasussman @fannyfoodstyle ahhhhh so many more people
Cheeeeese
At the piano, eating a rib. It doesn’t get any better than this.
Lil' penne
📸 @bumper3077
📸 @bumper3077
📸 @bumper3077
Last day in Bali!
jungle toons!
Bali
💕 @betches
"Can I help you?"
Get it, girl!
Eating Daddy's pancakes
Time for a zoo visit! #LunasFirstTour
❤️❤️❤️ laguna!
Beach day!
Luna X Pippa
Happy Mother's Day to Luna's awesome grandmothers too!!
Pre-show activities on #LunasFirstTour #DarknessAndLightTour #miamiseaquarium💦🐋🐳🐬🐟💦
Stealing john's photo haha she's not even his anyway
🐶💕
My stoop buddy
Oh my toons
Happy first birthday Lu!!!! My lovebug. You are all the best parts of the both of us and I cannot believe how much has happened in you first 12 months of life. We love you to the luna and back. Thank you @Yopeteryang for taking these awesome photos and the lip sync battle team for such a nice surprise!!! ❤️❤️❤️
Lulu and grandpa!
Luna likes the new #Time100 cover!
Happy Easter!!
Last day. My love.
Vacation vibes
Ah!!! So many firsts
First bow!
🎹🌙
Back on set for #lipsyncbattle season 3B!
This diaper is never not blue so don't even start with me
Houston aquarium with Luna for @si_swimsuit launch week!!
Pleassssse won't someone play roll the lemon with me 📸 @bumper3077
Toessssss
Petting zoo party
"Why don't I get to go to the Beauty and the Beast premiere?"
Practicing for La La with Luna
❤️
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

More from AOL.com:
'Today' show Halloween: See the anchors' best costumes through the years!
Cyndi Lauper has been standing behind 'unpopular ideas' for decades
Jenna Dewan Tatum reveals what she learned from working with Jennifer Lopez on 'World of Dance'

Read Full Story

Sign up for Entertainment Insider by AOL to get the hottest pop culture news delivered straight to your inbox!

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.