I have a constant war waging between me and a friend. He argues that chivalry is still alive, that men will throw down their jackets over a puddle to keep a woman from soggy shoes, that doors are always opened, and that men are here to protect the "fairer sex". He even went as far as sending me an article on chivalry still being alive.
Now I plan on writing a full article for next month's magazine on this but I would love to vent for a moment. This article blamed women for the death of chivalry. Because we want to be treated as equals (god forbid!) and cherish our independence, we have single-handedly killed all the knights in shining armor.
I would like to inform the writer of this piece of the exact location where he can put this silliness. Just because a woman is independent does not mean men are able to have free reign of the world, which they already do. It doesnt mean that he opens the door for himself and lets it slam on our pretty faces. And it definitely doesnt mean that being courteous is no longer necessary either.
Chivalry is dead because men have become lazy. Women being too independent for assistance is a lame excuse for said laziness. Yes, you may point out that indeed, YOU are a gentleman and are chivalrous with your woman. But there is definitely a fine line between courtesy and chivalry. I will provide a definition for each:
Chivalry: the combination of qualities expected of an ideal knight, esp courage, honour,
justice, and a readiness to help the weak
Courtesy: a polite gesture or behavior
I would like to point out that courtesy is part of the definition of chivalry but chivalry itself encompasses so much more. Its a sense of honoring the woman you are with be treating her respectfully and honoring those around you by being respectful to them. That doesnt mean opening the door for your woman and then allowing it to shut on a 90 year old woman because you dont want anything from her.
Its also a readiness to help others, like the old man who dropped his wallet and cannot pick it up.
And its the courage to have a mind of your own.
I will not say that I have dated a large variety of men. But the ones that I have been around are so focused on themselves tha they forget about the people around them. If I were to go out on a date with a real man, I would fall for him even more if he were to extend the same courtesy to me as he does the waiter who accidently dumped a trickle of water on your jeans, the man that accidently bumps into him at the bar, and the rude bartender that ignored him for the past twenty minutes.
Chivalry cannot be turned on and off. It is not just when you are around me or one single gesture. It is a way of living and being. And that transcends any feminist movement.