Right. Pussy as shorthand for sex is problematic because it reduces a woman to her sexual organs, it objectifies them. Would you enjoy being reduced to your penis?
That he's using women as substitute for "pussy" and that his phrasing juxtaposes them with "people" (even though that wasn't the intent, I agree) only highlights the problem further. I understand what he was trying to convey, but that doesn't excuse the wording and the attitude it reveals.
Beyond that, what exactly are you supposed to think when Noah Kagan, someone who has already made hugely sexist statements in the past, wants to tell you about "the 3Ps of entrepreneurship"? That kind of statement is a lead in, and that he tried to backtrack when the audience reacted is irrelevant. Reducing anyone to their body parts at all is a big problem and is a horrifying thing to say, but women and trans folk suffer much more from this kind if rhetoric then cisgender men do, so don't pretend that this kind of statement is OK or is no big deal.
> Also, how do you know his statements weren't actually directed at lesbians, who are attracted to similar private parts, why assume he was targeting straight men?
The orientation of the folks in the audience is not the issue, it is the reduction of people to sex objects for conquest that is the problem.
> in this case, again with so little context, I would lean towards !lighten up everybody!
Saying that people need to lighten up is a dismissal that says you don't really think that this is a big deal and you don't care about the issues this brings up for many people. This kind of attitude perpetuates these kinds of incidents and makes it harder for people whose lives are directly affected by this kind of shit.