September 20th, 2017: as I walked out the train, I was heading for the stairs, when I saw this elderly man struggling with his suitcase. So being the decent human being that I am, I offered to help him, and he gladly accepted. But as I grabbed the handle on that suitcase, another man, came up behind me and took over. I looked over my shoulder and I was like " I can handle this, no worries " but he insisted on taking it.
And I gotta tell you, it's not like I was about to fall on my face with it, I only had my book bag on me and that was it. So I could've totally handled it.
The fact that he knew, he saw that I could have done it by myself and yet he offered to help, that was what stuck to me. So, thank you, random stranger.
Well this act of kindness today, brought my attention to a topic I'm very passionate about, and I've decided to swarm you with some of my opinions on it.
So, in this day and age, as shocking as it is, I still hear a lot of people, especially guys, making an analogy between chivalry and inequality. Their reasoning behind it is, " you women have been fighting for years now, for equality, and now that you have it, you still want us guys to do things for you? " As if being chivalrous equals being sexist.
Okay, first for all, there's still so much injustice in the world against women, that I'm not comfortable with people thinking, equality is actually achieved. Equality is not achieved until every woman in the world can benefit from the same rights that men have. Plus, let's not forget that even in the most "developed countries" out there, as we like to call them, women are still not payed the same amounts that men are, for the same job, and the same damn qualifications.
What I'm gonna do now, is kind of draining but crucial to understand the other mentality, which is give examples of what they mean.
So, what I think they mean by it is: now that women are working, making money on their own, why should I treat you for food or something like that? Now that women are fighting for equality, why should I help you carry your luggage? Why should I open your door? Why should I do things for you in general? ( And trust me when I tell you that these perceptions do exist. I've encountered in my life people like that. )
My answer to all of those questions would be that you don't have to. You certainly can, but you shouldn't feel obliged to do so. Although it's common decency to be kind and nice to other people and that's what chivalry means to me.
Well, when you search for the meaning of chivalry on Google this is what one of the definitions you'll find: " the combination of qualities expected of an ideal knight, especially courage, honor, courtesy, justice, and a readiness to help the weak. " Basically, what I said without the fancy wording.
So it's a shame the majority of millennials are now defining it as a man doing things for a woman, putting gender roles to it, and that's what might be considered sexist.
I, as a woman, don't need you to do anything for me, I can hold my own without you pulling the chair for me, opening the door for me, buying me food, holding my luggage, or paying for random crap for me. I am not incompetent. But I wouldn't mind if you do them. Who doesn't like it when someone is being nice to them? And the same if I'm being nice to a man, or to a woman or a man to a man. I've treated my girl and guy friends to meals before, I've helped them with their luggage and they did the same for me. We don't have to put gender limits to chivalry.
And if you're dating, kindess should go both ways as well.