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I’ve got so many things on the boil these days so no time to write, but the blog must be fed. So, here’s a short beginning to something I’ve been working on. If you think I’ve left a lot out, you’re right. I’ll finish it some time when I have the time.

The other morning I heard that two women in a restaurant had been chatted up by two men. The men joined them at the table and sat and chatted; when the men left a short while later, the women were presented with their bill. Where’s chivalry, moans the commentator. It’s sleazy behaviour, sure, but what does that have to do with chivalry?

Every now and again some male won’t stand up for a pregnant female on a bus or a tram and without fail the term chivalry is brought up. My first thought when I hear about it is that the man hasn’t been raised properly by his mother. Again, I can’t see where chivalry comes into it.

I always stand up for an elderly person or a pregnant woman, not all women do, often it’s young women too busy giving social media a workout to even notice that someone is in need; men don’t have a monopoly on bad manners.

Chivalry is dead, I shout at the radio commentator, but he can’t hear me. Chivalry belongs to the middle ages when men wore tin cans and rode around on horses looking for maidens to rescue. Men ruled the world then and women were the fragile, brainless little blossoms just asking to be cherished and protected. Today men are finding out to their cost that women are neither brainless, nor are they fragile little blossoms; nor do men rule the world.

As I’m writing this, a Victorian man, Matt Scarff is on his way home from Bali. He was king hit by a thug in Bali and is in a coma. Scarff was coming to the rescue of a female friend who was being harassed. Is that chivalry? And is that where chivalry leads you? Is it worth it? You’d have to ask Matt’s family who will be sitting around the hospital bed hoping he will come out of his coma.

Helen Reddy (she’s a woman, hear her roar) told us that we have ‘paid the price, but look how much we’ve gained’. That was forty years ago, but women have come a fair way since that day. Back then the chant was ‘we don’t want to be better than men; we want to be equal to men.’ Now the neo feminists tell us that women do want to be better than men and we have several women’s councils working on wish lists. Reddy’s lyrics are not clear about what the price it is that women have paid for coming such a long way, but my guess is that if we’re no longer stuck in the kitchen, we have an entrée into the once male dominated areas of the workforce; if we’ve lost the right to have men open doors for us or rise when we leave the table, then we are emancipated and free to be independent of men; where men were once the traditional breadwinners we are educated and self-sufficient, except in a divorce situation of course, where to quote Ivana Trump we ‘don’t get mad, we get it all.’ That should teach men to think we’re blossoms.

So, to male commentators pandering to a mostly female demographic, this is the 21st Century and chivalry is dead; the corpse is in dire need of a decent burial. However, if we are determined to revive it, then let’s make chivalry equal opportunity.

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12 thoughts on “Chivalry

  1. Too often is chivalry isolated to men. I’m a nineteen year old girl-woman-hybrid, and my mother brought me up to open doors, to stand when someone older to me entered the room, to be courteous at all times, and to never place the needs of someone else below my own. Failing to offer your seat to a person in need of it, regardless of gender, screams of discourtesy and self-importance.

  2. I like chivalry. I think you are right, it is disappearing. We do teach our sons to open doors for people still. I usually paid for my boyfriend’s meal when I was growing up, he didn’t have spending money. LOL. We didn’t eat out that often either. My hubby did pay for most dates when we were dating. He still likes to show chivalry. 🙂 Good thoughts and story! 🙂

    • Thanks, Bruce. It’s how I usually begin an article, then I tease it out and revise. I haven’t had the time lately. These are confusing times, Bruce. I’ve taught my boys about chivalry and kindness and respect and told them to expect it as well as give it.

  3. I agree with you completely. An integral part of freedom and personal dignity is not being dependent on the good graces of others. Kindness, of course, is still important. But that should show both in men and women.

  4. There are so many comments I’d like to make, but really even a two hour discussion would be futile, (though we might feel better for having aired our views). Self absorption is common and unfortunately, rights, responsibilities and selfishness are take precedence over consideration.

    • Air your views by all means. Political correctness often gets in the way of a good debate. Am not sure what you mean, though about ‘self absorption….rights, responsibilities and selfishness.’ Whose do you mean?

      • I was interpreting “chivalry” as being consideration for others. The able bodied person who doesn’t offer their seat to someone more needy frequently believes that they have a seat, therefore they are entitled to sit for example. Equality can only exist in a society where everyone has genuine and sincere consideration for their fellow man, who sees themselves reflected in the person they are looking at, no matter their gender, race, colour, religion, age, education, income, weight, hair colour and so on. Sorry getting a bit D&M. Injustice can get me climbing on the soapbox!

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