Chivalry is out of style

This past Christmas Eve, I went to church with my wife, my sister, and my brother-in-law. We arrived a half hour early, which was a half hour too late. All of the seats were taken, and even the standing room in the back was filling quickly.

The four of us were able to carve out a spot to stand near the rear of the church. My wife and I have twin babies, and my sister had just given birth to her first child a week or two before. As we set up shop in the back, I thought to myself: “Well, we’ve got a young woman with a newborn and another woman with twins; surely a couple of the many men already sitting will jump up to offer their seats to my wife and sister. Nick and I can stand for the whole service, but there’s no reason why our wives should.” But my delusions were quickly interrupted by the harsh reality. As I looked around, I saw dozens of other women standing alongside us — many of them with kids in tow.

Maybe the hundreds of gentlemen in the pews just haven’t… noticed?

A few minutes later, I had to run to the car to get the diaper bag we’d left in the backseat. When I returned, my wife and sister were sitting in the pews.

Faith in modern manhood: restored.

For the time being, anyway.

I later found out that Beth and Alissa only ended up in seats because they were approached by two other women who offered to make room for them.

Faith in modern manhood: returned to its original severely diminished state.

I wasn’t going to write about this incident. I didn’t want to put a damper on the Christmas festivities. Then, this morning, I read about a recent survey, which came to the unsurprising conclusion that men are increasingly abandoning chivalrous customs. For their part, women are now more likely to be the ones committing certain acts of chivalry.

Our experience at church came rushing back into my mind.

I guess we need to talk about chivalry.

I can’t convince you that it’s cool or modern, but maybe I can show you why it’s important and necessary.

The study suggests that men who forgo chivalry often do so because they’re afraid that being gentlemen might seem “offensive” to some women. Meanwhile, only a small fraction of women actually report being offended by chivalrous deeds. Regardless, that is a flimsy and embarrassing excuse. If a woman is either pretentious or paranoid enough to take a kind gesture as an attack against her womanly identity, that’s her problem. Most, thankfully, are not nearly so confused. If they are, that isn’t our concern. We should do the right thing because it is the right thing; not because we’ve made a prediction as to how it will be received. If you have direct knowledge that a particular female is often quite horrified when car doors are opened for her or seats are offered to her on the subway, then I suppose you should respect her wishes — as ridiculous as they might be. But men are now dumping chivalry entirely, under the supposed assumption that ALL women take great offense to it. This can’t be justified. And, I suspect, it’s simply another thinly veiled excuse to be lazy, self-centered, and apathetic.

So, what about this chivalry thing? It’s true, I admit, that the whole shtick is horribly out of style. Then again, we live in a culture where “what’s in style” seems to change every three months, and the designations of “in” and “out” are completely contrived, shallow, and meaningless. Saying something is “in style” only means that “this is what people happen to be doing now.” Why are they doing it? Because they are. Why aren’t they doing the things they aren’t doing? Because they aren’t. And around we go in circles, spinning down the nihilistic drain.

Chivalry, on the other hand, had a POINT. And the point was deep and substantive. It was a point that rested on an understanding of human nature, and an earnest desire to battle our basest instincts. The point was never “subjugation of women” or “male dominance.” Quite the opposite, in fact. The point was love, and sacrifice, and service. The point was to make a statement that we are not beasts; we are not mere products of dog-eat-dog evolution. We will not live in a world where just the physically strongest survive. Women can only be slaves in a world like that, as history has proven many times.

The rejection of chivalry, on the other hand, is pointless because the rejecters don’t even understand what they’re rejecting. As usual.

Chivalry, as a word and a concept, has a long history, reaching back to the time of knights, feudal warfare, and the Truce of God. The latter was an attempt by the Church to curb and contain the violence and brutality of the Medieval Age. The meaning of “chivalry” has evolved, but its roots can be found in the oath that Crusader knights were made to take as part of their consecration, or “dubbing”. A knight swore “to defend to his uttermost the weak, the orphan, the widow and the oppressed; he should be courteous, and women should receive his especial care”.

Knights could use their strength and wealth to dominate and oppress, but they were called to utilize it in the opposite direction. They were called to do with their power what Christ did with His. They were called to love in the manner described by Paul in Ephesians 5. That’s chivalry. We might not wear suits of armor anymore (unfortunately), but there’s nothing suddenly irrelevant or unnecessary about the spirit of chivalry.

Other phrases and traditions have, over time, become associated with the chivalrous code. You might think of the sinking of the Titanic and “women and children first.” Actually, the first known application of this evacuation strategy occurred in the mid-1800’s, with the HMS Birkenhead shipwreck. After the ship hit a rock and began to sink, the women and children were ushered to the few usable liferafts. It wasn’t until she broke in two that the captain told the men to abandon ship and swim for the boats. But the Lieutenant-Colonel on board realized that the women and children would likely drown if all the men swamped the liferafts. He yelled for the men to stay put and go down with the ship. They did. Almost all of them. Few survived.

Chivalry.

Luckily, unless you plan to go on a voyage on a 19th century frigate this spring, you’ll likely never be called to give your life for the sake of chivalry. This is probably a good thing, seeing as how most of us won’t even give up our seat at church for it.

I said that chivalry — unlike the anti-chivalry movement — had a point. This is it. Chivalry calls for the strongest to serve and honor the weakest, realizing that the other option is for the strongest to dominate and abuse the weakest. Chivalry is one of the things that separates us from gorillas and wolves and rats. We, as chivalrous men, are called to use our strength in service to women, children, the infirm, and the elderly.

If we adopt an “every man and woman for him/herself” then no woman will ever escape a sinking ship again. The men could quite easily shove the women aside, jump on the lifeboats, and get outta Dodge.

You might think this irrelevant because you’ll probably never be in a floundering sea craft or a burning building, but I disagree. I think the whole world is sinking and on fire, and it’s been this way since the Fall of Man. And as things go bad, the weakest are the most exposed and vulnerable. That is, unless the strongest choose to stand fast and take the brunt of the storms that come.

In the mean time, as a routine matter, chivalry is still essential. Men should carry bags, and hold doors, and pull out chairs, and offer seats to women, not because women are incapable of standing or opening their own doors, but because of what these acts represent — what they say. And what they say is simple: “I am bigger and stronger than you, but I will use my strength to honor you and protect you. I will not hurt you. I will not take advantage of you. I will humble myself before you and serve you.”

Ask yourself: is it better that we live in a society where men are dedicated to using their physical superiority for good, even if the good is something as small as carrying a grocery bag or opening a door? If your answer is yes, then you should see the importance of chivalry.

If you answer “no,” then, well, I’m not sure where to go from here. You and I live in different universes.

And to men I ask this: what sort of man do you want to be? When you — assuming you are healthy and capable — sit as women stand, you have made a choice. That choice does not occur in a vacuum. You are now not just a man who sat while women stood, you are the sort of man who would sit as women stand. That wouldn’t look good on your Match.com profile, and it doesn’t bode well for society.

So be chivalrous. Be chivalrous for their sake and yours.

*****

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934 Responses to Chivalry is out of style

  1. yote54 says:

    Lame excuse. Over time, I see more and more why chivalry is still needed. I was told years ago that it helped keep men civilized. Plus, it is just good manners. REAL feminism should rejoice in and appreciate men who exhibit good manners. Plus, women need to respect themselves more and expect to be treated with respect. End of subject.

  2. Considering the state of our society, especially how we treat our unborn (regardless if they are male or female), why should the absence of chivalry seem startling?

    Should We Let Our Pro-Abortion Friends/Relatives Be Around Our Children ???
    http://www.theDHblog.com

    • Good point. It’s not about men, it’s about our terminally ill culture of death, where even the most basic “niceties” such as not killing little people is legislated into a deviant, very harsh, heartless reality. Chivalry? In America? Who even cares about anyone else in a culture where people are slaughtering their own offspring on a massive scale?

  3. yote54 says:

    In addition, too much baggage attached to the word ‘chivalry’. Call it courtesy, good manners, WHATEVER. It does not cost a thing to be nice. Lose the selfishness and pride. We are all here to help one another.

  4. Totally agree. Once when I was 7 months pregnant (so visibly with child) I got on the metro in Washington DC and started making my way toward an open seat when a man pushed passed me and not only sat in the seat I was clearly about to sit in, he then put his backpack and feet in the only other empty seat on the entire train! After a few minutes a woman sitting with her friend offered her seat to me which I appreciated because it was pretty hard to stand. As a woman, I don’t mind giving up my seat to someone more in need of it than me, and maybe the fact that the person who “stole” my seat was a man is irrelevant. Everyone, men and women, could stand to be a little more chivalrous.

    • Faith says:

      Amen!!! While in the hospital with my 22 month old son who was in Intensive Care with bacterial meningitis….I was 7 months pregnant…and as I spent the night in the waiting room, others…including a few men, used the chairs and allowed me to sit on the floor. It was a long and uncomfortable night….I still remember wondering what you had to do to get a little courtesy!

      • JSantorelli says:

        If a man assumed a woman is pregnant and she wasn’t the scolding would be heard from the moon! Maybe men got tired of nasty women like yourself who think its more proper to scold a man for protecting himself than the ungrateful women (feminists) who berate him on nearly a daily basis.

        • Susan M says:

          That was uncalled for! She didn’t say she had berated anyone. She endured and simply ‘wondered.’ I suspect you may have done somebody that way to be so defensively judgmental about it. I have learned that it is better to speak up politely and say why you (or someone you are trying to help) need someone to be kind about a chair right now. Not everyone cares even then, but in a group of people, its more likely someone there will be decent enough to help you.

        • JSantorelli says:

          @Susan M: It was certainly called for. Men avoid ans shy away from women because women are not worth the risk of a tarnished reputation. If I gave up my seat to a woman because I thought she was pregnant and she wasn’t I would get a severe bashing for that from her. I’d be luck if that was all I got. If she decided to sue I would be in hot water needing to retain a lawyer. Women invited this upon themselves.

        • Sarah says:

          I’m confused as to how you are seeing the scenario. Would you actually look at someone and say, “You look pregnant, would you like a seat?” cause that’s insulting no matter who you are talking to or who is doing the talking. Wouldn’t you just offer the seat? The lady isn’t going to chew you out unless you say everything that pops into your head. That’s just poor social etiquette. I have yet to hear of a lawsuit from a woman being called pregnant either. That’s a new one to me, but then I’ve noticed you do like to blow things a little out of proportion. Perhaps you need to learn better manners and then your kind gestures wouldn’t come across as rude all the time. You think she might be pregnant, just offer the seat, the explanation as to why you are doing what you are doing is unnecessary. You think someone looks worn out and tired, you offer the seat, you don’t say, “you look terrible, would you like a seat?” That’s insulting no matter if you are talking to a guy or girl.

        • Leelee Wah says:

          You don’t need to say “Hey fat pregnant lady …” You just need to say, “Please, let me offer you my seat.” She can either say yes or no. I have often offered a seat to the pregnant, the elderly, and those with more burden. You don’t need to be a man to practice chivalry, just need to be a human being.

        • Denny McFall says:

          If you are getting berated on a nearly daily basis for your kindness, such as it is, perhaps you should change your approach. It seems quite evident from the way you express yourself here that you see things in a way that likely leads to you approaching things in a way to receive such reactions. I do things like that nearly every day, and have never had someone scold me for being kind to them. “Pleas take my seat miss (or ma’am).” Or hold the door open and politely smile, saying,”after you.” Or just politely smile while you do it.

      • littlehouseofpenguins says:

        I remember being *at the OB* of all places, overdue with my first, and several men (spouses, boyfriends) were sitting in the chairs while several pregnant women were standing. It just seemed ridiculous. I wouldn’t sit, as a non-pregnant female, while there were pregnant women or elderly people or people with crutches standing. And as for judging whether somebody is pregnant or just fat, an OB is one place where you can probably be safe in the assumption.

        • Salima says:

          100% agreed. at the OB/GYN i recently witnessed a packed house and a woman who was actually IN EARLY LABOR, waiting for the doc to check her to be sure she was in labor (she was) and at least a dozen men sat lounging in their chairs as she went through contraction after contraction. I was also standing and I tried to ask a couple of men to please let her sit, they looked at me like I was nuts then turned their attention back to their cell phones. DISGUSTING.

    • Jocelyn says:

      I was eight months pregnant, and VERY visible, when I was riding the local College Shuttle bus to class. There were two elderly ladies on the bus, and no empty seats, but at least a dozen healthy, young men that could easily stand instead of these poor ladies that would lose their balance every time the bus turned. So, I stood up and gave one of them my seat. No one else moved. I “invited” some of the clearly able men to stand as well. I couldn’t believe they weren’t ashamed that a pregnant woman gave up her seat for an elderly lady, and they not only didn’t think of doing that, but they didn’t follow suit. One man felt enough shame I guess to finally stand and offer the other lady his seat, but I was never offered a seat. [sigh] I do know that MY sons will act better.

      • Danee Rudy says:

        My sons too- I will stand there and act like I don’t have hands until they open the door for me. I would not do that to anyone else, but I will to my two boys because otherwise they ‘forget’. Manners should be taught- but if your parents never taught you to get a door or give up a seat, you should still be able to figure it out for yourself!!

  5. Julie says:

    My comment isn’t so much about chivalry but about the situation Matthew encountered at the Church where seats were not given up for the women and their babies until two other women gave up their seats. I think one has to look at the whole picture. Look at it from the point of view from the people sitting. If I were sitting and the father of a family on Christmas Eve, my thought would be, “I’m so grateful to be with my family at mass.” And when we go to church don’t we want to sit with our families, to be together as a unit?

    Now, for the families standing at the back, couldn’t it be looked at as, “It’s unfortunate that coming here so early still didn’t provide us with a seat. Mass is long, but imagine what Mary and Joseph went through.” The manager at the Inn didn’t kick out the people sleeping in rooms but did accomodate the Holy Family. Is it that hard to stand for an hour to an hour and a half with your whole family to honor Christ’s birth?

    • Mikey Joe says:

      Julie, you express my sentiments exactly! This query speaks volumes to me: Is it that hard to stand for an hour to an hour and a half with your whole family to honor Christ’s birth?
      Though I understand Matt’s perspective, it struck me as a bit whiny and overstated. I am a man sitting with my family I arrived early enough to secure a place for my family. It tests the limits of rationality to accuse a man of being unchivalrous because he remains seated with his wife and family.
      I also observe a tendency in fairly younger parents to be “child obsessed” when engaged in social interactions. I also find it discourteous when children act up during Mass and certain parents lack the smarts to excuse themselves.

    • B says:

      I agree to some extent with Julie.

      We have a large family and it requires getting to church relatively early so as not to stand (my wife cannot stand for long periods of time). I used to get up and give a standing woman near us my seat, however I started noticing the same women would show up late much of the time. 1) We go together to attend church as a family. 2) Why should I give up my seat every week to someone who refuses to get themselves someplace timely because in essence I have have “saved” them a seat?!

      I do believe in chivalry, and if a bus is crowded would gladly give up my seat, however I think some folks take advantage of this situation.

      One last observation, because today parents focus too much on the children, I often see parents standing while their kids sit. When I grew up, the parents sat and the kids stood because that was the right thing to do. Today you’re teaching the kids they should never be inconvienced and that carries into their adulthood.

      • Denny McFall says:

        I suppose if we want to go deciding when we can cut off the kindness, we should maybe ask this question: how many times is Jesus going to be patient and kind with us, though we can’t get our act together? Do you mess up on something every week,B? I know I do. I don’t suppose it should matter how often someone is late or why. I do suppose it should matter that we are told in the bible to “do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,” When you get to a place where you say “that person messes up all the time, so I will stop being kind to them,” you are losing perspective: we all have sinned, and continue to sin daily, yet we value ourselves better than others. The truth is that each of us is equally undeserving of kindness, and equally commanded to give it anyway. There is no wiggle room there, just a plain command. Read on after that verse, into Philippians 2, and you will find that it says that just as Christ, who IS God, did not consider this to be something to take advantage of, made himself a servant to we undeserving, we who are commanded to have the same mind as Him should think of others. After all, did you earn that seat by having it all together? What about Christ who, by very nature, earned worship and authority over all things. Can we have the same mind as He, and still look at our neighbor, or sister, and say that we will not give up what we think we have earned for she who has not in our eyes?

    • Michele says:

      Well said Julie, good point. None of use really know hardship, and being with family is important. But my dad would have gotten up, and he is my hero, I love him so much for all the sacrifices he has made for us and others. And the example he set through his thoughtfulness.
      Something that saddened me so much the other day at the store a man dropped some coins in line and the child that was in front of him got down and collected them for him. He was so appreciative and told her what a sweet thing she did. he then handed her a small coin and told her to put it in her piggy bank at home. when the mother saw, she vehemently said no, and made the child give it back. It made the poor man feel so uncomfortable and me as well. I think the mother was uncomfortable too. But why did she do it? Isn’t it a good thing to learn that kindness sometimes yields reward? And the Man, I am sure will think twice before trying to be nice to another child.

      • mommyx4boys says:

        That is sad I’m sure it probably hurt the man’s feelings. i don’t know wht some people are so hateful. i really hate rude behavior there is just no excuse for it. i am very proud of my children if that had been my son he probably would have said thankyou sir but I’m not allowed to accept anything from strangers

    • Jared says:

      Julie:

      I agree with much of what you said. I do, however, disagree with you on one fundamental point. While it wonderful to sit with one’s family at church, it is even better to set an example of service to your children. When a man gives up his seat to a woman at church (or anywhere), he teaches his children the importance of unselfishness and service. He teaches his children that it is sometimes necessary to put the needs of others first. I believe that this lesson to your children will, in the long run, be more important to them than an hour and a half sitting next to their father at church.

      • wendy says:

        Amen!

      • Wim says:

        We have 3 young boys, who for the love of God cannot sit still yet. My wife needs me there with her to keep them in line. Should I serve a random woman, and leave my own wife on her own? That too, is a consideration I have to make in such circumstances. Anyways, we can all attack the author for the example he chose to illustrate his point. His point, however, is correct. There IS an unfortunate decline in chivalry these days: not every man -even one who is a gentleman- is supposed to always cede his seat. But the fact that every man did, is telling. There must have been men without a family/young children who should have noticed the need of some other people in attendance.

        • Els says:

          Wim, find a middle ground. Put a child of yours on your lap, and let the “random woman” (who also happens to be your sister in Christ) sit down. Now you have taught your child a lesson, stayed with your wife, and served your random sister in Christ. Kids can also be doubled to a chair as long as they are not theater style chairs.

          Someone else should do it is not a good excuse. Someone else is not going to teach your boys how to be a man who serves others and respects others. You will, as you set the example. I know. I have three wiggly boys who have grown into teens who respect others. It meant we gave up their seats for others. We even had one sit on the floor in the aisle “because you can and that older man shouldn’t have to”. It meant we taught them to immediately slow down and make room when they saw a walker or a cane “because if you rush around that person and knock out that cane, they could fall and break a hip.”

          Interestingly, I found as I taught my kids to respect others by giving the elderly and women with babies a seat, by being careful around those who limp, by smiling at and saying hello to people with mental disabilities, that I found that they learned to sit still in church, too. Why? Because “look around you. There are a lot of people here who spent a lot of time getting ready and coming to church because they want to hear. They do not want to have you disrupt this.” We used the same line in a restaurant. “Look around. All these people are paying good money to come have a nice meal. You can not ruin it for them by being loud or leaving your seat. See that couple over there? They may have left their kids to spend some adult time on a date. Don’t ruin it for them. See that table of old people? They can’t hear very well because their ears are getting old. Use inside voices so they can hear each other talk.”

          Now I have three boys, two with ADHD that can sit relatively quietly in church, and when one starts tapping or jiggling, all it takes is a look to get him to stop…. for two minutes!… and then another look… but they are learning! 🙂

    • wendy says:

      I am sure the intent behind this comment was noble, but let’s take a look at it. The Christian thing to do would be to allow the woman who just gave birth to stand, so she can “suffer” like Jesus did. The n lets use our religion and family to justify iit. If you realy want to show your family Jesus, then try being like Jesus. This noble intent is a poor attempt to justify plain excuses.

      • wendy says:

        In reply to Julies statement.

      • Lehilimes says:

        I just have to say this is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. And I’ve heard a lot of dumb stuff…haha. I’m still giggling at how completely asinine you are. Thanks for the laugh.

    • Emily says:

      It actually can be very difficult to stand for an hour and a half only a week after you have given birth! Whether a cesarean or a natural birth, you are still considered healing only a week post partum! He doesn’t sound whiney at all.

  6. Marsha Anderson says:

    It was interesting to me as I traveled last summer in Germany, how many times young men and women gave up their seats on public transportation to me (an older person). They also offered to help me with my luggage and to help me get on and off the train. I was amazed because I have not had a similar experience here at home. Young persons here always hold doors for me; especially when I have my hands full, but rarely do I get offered a seat. I don’t think parents teach their children these basic courtesies as much anymore.

    • Christine says:

      I went on a college visit at Butler University with my parents and on the way back we talked about how it seemed like every time we got to a door, a student was holding it for us. Your comment just reminded me of this. On another note, I’m encouraged by the fact that many girls I know find it attractive and pleasant when guys hold doors or carry things or offer seats for girls.

  7. Jill J says:

    chivalry, and its other forms: being kind, being polite, putting others before oneself, is not dead; some will practice it, others will be offended by it…and, it seems, never the twain shall meet…

  8. jmwhite01 says:

    Very well said!!! I’m raising two boys with my husband and I hope to make sure they are taught to be respectful.
    Maybe a small example to say it’s out there…. We went to Disney recently and we left Magic Kingdom really late one evening. I was holding my exhausted 3 year old while my husband was trying to hold everything else as well as keep our oldest in his sights. It was standing room only on the bus and my arms were starting to get tired. I about cried when a young man got up moved a couple of his friends and offered us their seats saying that we needed them more than they did. It’s a small example but it helped restore my faith in chivalry. 🙂

  9. maria blalock says:

    It reminded me of an uncle relating this. After walking a few blocks waiting for the bus to take them to the city (10 miles), to my aunt’s dismay all the seats were taken. In a tired voice,my aunt said, “Oh no….. No empty seats!!!”. My uncle in a very LOUD voice said, “There are plenty of seats, what there are not any of.are GENTLEMEN”.

  10. Jason says:

    First off I’d like to thank you for your post. It sparked a very healthy and good debate on FB among my friends and I think everyone came away the better for it.

    I also agree that chivalry should come from a place of love, sacrifice, and service. And I’m also going to explain why I think people who reject chivalry do indeed have a point. And why they may take offense to one acting chivalrous as well as a suggestion on how to move forward.

    “Chivalry calls for the strongest to serve and honor the weakest, realizing that the other option is for the strongest to dominate and abuse the weakest. Chivalry is one of the things that separates us from gorillas and wolves and rats.

    It is this thought, this idea that people use to blame women for being raped. It is an idea that excuses the behavior of evil men and shrugs off their responsibility to the world around them. It suggests that without chivalry we would all be mindless, brainless beasts unable to control our urges, and our bodies. I believe that what separates a man from a wolf, rat, or gorilla isn’t chivalry it’s our ability to think. It’s our ability to reason and to it is our ability to make a choice. People do not rape others because the victim has beguiled them into losing control of their bodies, their urges and their minds. They make a choice and a conscious one at that to subjugate their victim.

    “A knight swore “to defend to his uttermost the weak, the orphan, the widow and the oppressed; he should be courteous, and women should receive his especial care”.”

    and

    We, as chivalrous men, are called to use our strength in service to women, children, the infirm, and the elderly.

    These statements suggest two things:

    1. Men are strong
    2. Women, children, the infirm and the elderly are weak and therefore need help.

    And it is here that we get to the heart of the problem of chivalry. Chivalry defines who is strong and who is weak by gender and age. You may see yourself as saying (later in your post) “I am bigger and stronger than you…” but let’s change the adjectives while retaining the same meaning “You are smaller and weaker than I am…” What if someone did something for you based on this rationale? How would that make you feel? Can you see how someone may take offense to this?

    In conclusion I would suggest a different way to define chivalry: We, as chivalrous people, should be called to use our strength to help those IN NEED.

    This definition is free of bias. Even the strongest men in the world need help at times and should we, during our daily lives, come across one who needs help we should help them regardless of who you are and who they are.

    • Mathew says:

      “In conclusion I would suggest a different way to define chivalry: We, as chivalrous people, should be called to use our strength to help those IN NEED. ”

      Excellent post

    • Teresa says:

      This may possibly be the best thing I have ever read in a comments section. Well done.

    • Rachel says:

      Great points!

    • SP says:

      THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR SAYING THIS. I agree completely! We should not giving up our seats to someone based on their gender (which apparently divides people into “weak” and “strong” categories). How about if I decide to give up my seat to someone else based not on merely whether they look like they need it, perhaps I could give up my seat for the sole reason that I know I CAN STAND.

      • jdemsick says:

        This kind of response is why so many men don’t give up their seats anymore. You’ve told them you don’t want them to. The fact is men are stronger and the appropriate use of strength is to offer it in sacrifice for beauty.

        • Laurel says:

          That makes it sound like we’re objects. Trophies. Like you have power, so you need to step up as the dominant half of the race and take care of the frail, weak little ones who can’t handle things on their own. Psh. Sacrifice for beauty.

        • SP says:

          Men are not always stronger. Women are not always weaker. There are some men who are very tiny, and there are some women who have quite a bit of muscle. We shouldn’t be generalizing like that because it’s not fair to those who don’t fit into the “norms”. What’s with this idea that women are only for beauty and men only for strength? What a way to objectify. Women are people too, and aren’t just pretty objects. Similarly, men are more than just bunches of muscles who have to use their strength.

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  13. bmommyx2 says:

    I think people should be kind no matter if they are a man or a woman. It amazed me after I had my first child how many people would walk through a door ahead of me & then let go. If I hadn’t been paying attention my child & I would have been hit by the door. It always amazes me how someone can stand by while I struggled to hold the door open while pushing the stroller through. I find that many men & women are just oblivious to their surroundings.

  14. Heather says:

    Live this blog!

  15. Larry says:

    IT IA NOT “OUT OF STYLE”!

    It is forbidden.

    • Larry says:

      I can not count the number of times I have been punished for offering a seat, or opening a door.

      • Larry says:

        About the only time I am allowed to hold a door open for women or elderly (I an 75 and us a cane) is when that will let them get in line ahead of me.

    • Jennifer says:

      There are plenty of us who welcome and appreciate a gentleman Larry. Don’t stop doing it because a few people have chastised you. It’s their problem, not yours. I am 41 and a woman and I was raised to appreciate when a man is kind and chivalrous. But I also return the favor whenever someone looks like they could use a seat, a break, a hand, a shoulder, a tow, or just a warm smile.

  16. I have been in several situations where I was visibly pregnant, with little ones in tow, and needed some assistance with bags or carts full of groceries–and men just ignored me. Even when I asked them to help, and they did, they seemed afraid they would “get in trouble” for doing so. I love it when my husband is kind and courteous to me, and to other women. He is a true gentleman, and I am very thankful for the gift of him in my life.

  17. theDHblog says:

    Considering the state of our society, especially how we treat our unborn (regardless if they are male or female), why should the absence of chivalry seem startling?

    Should We Let Our Pro-Abortion Friends/Relatives Be Around Our Children ???
    http://www.theDHblog.com

  18. Pingback: Matt Walsh is My Hero | Petals from the Basket

  19. mosquito says:

    Matt Walsh writes: “Saying something is “in style” only means that “this is what people happen to be doing now.” Why are they doing it? Because they are. Why aren’t they doing the things they aren’t doing? Because they aren’t. And around we go in circles, spinning down the nihilistic drain.” That’s a ridiculously, embarrassingly, apparent straw man. The reason why something is in style is never because it is. The reason why people don’t do what they don’t do is never because they don’t. Walsh is making things up as he goes along, hatching it in his imagination and then presenting it as if it is truth. That’s misrepresentation of what he knows. That’s fraud. So, I have proven that he is a fraud. People like him give a bad name to Christianity and harm the good name of Jesus Christ. He’s a pathetic excuse for a Christian.

    • KnitWit says:

      Please, please, PLEASE tell me you’re a troll.

    • Jennifer says:

      Mosquito, You call it a strawman argument but then never explain yourself. Feel free to disagree, but isn’t it possible to do so without name calling and calling into question his relationship with God? I can’t imagine why his comments make him a fraud or less Christian for goodness sake. Matt is writing from his heart, from his experience, and it’s his opinion. It is a blog for goodness sake. If you think that people do or don’t do something for some other reason than what Matt states here, feel free to expound on it. Maybe you can enlighten the rest of us about something we had not thought about? But by being so negative about another man’s opinion I would guess that no one wants to hear what you have to say. Of course, you could start your own blog and tell people all about why you think people do or don’t do things. Could it be? Satan? Maybe had he said that he’d be more Christian in your eyes? Sigh.

    • Denny McFall says:

      Uh oh! Looks like we got a Pharisee over here! Quick, someone get the extra-clinky offering bin!

  20. Bobbi says:

    I’m a woman! I certainly wish chivalry had not gone out of style. I workout in a gym, I’ve lost count of the male conversations I’ve heard where vulgar language is used, freely, without a moment’s thought to a woman being present. I find myself wishing for a time when a young man would not have dreamed of speaking that way with a lady nearby.

    Chivalry was born of an understanding of femininity that has long been lost. The good of it was thrown out with the Feminist Movement. We gave up the perspective of a “need” for men, for their protection, and ability to conquer the world for us. Not only do women suffer but men do as well.

    So many young men have lost their purpose as males. They’ve become feminized as a result of the masculinizing of females. God’s design for male and female has been muddled and blurred until we have no clear definition anymore.

    So thank you for your post. It is up to parents who agree, to teach their sons chivalry and teach their daughters how to be strong, feminine recipients of such an honor.

    • Danee Rudy says:

      @Bobbi- Love this! Men’s and women’s roles were created for a reason, and I bet if the average woman during the feminist movement would have realized all she was losing, the movement would have never gained momentum. My husband and his brother both open doors for me all the time. If my sons forget to open a door for me I stand there until they remember. 🙂

      • JSantorelli says:

        @Danee: Maybe if instead of standing their waiting you used that time to eradicate feminism you would get what you want.

  21. Danielle says:

    Love your style!

  22. CLE says:

    I have a personal anecdote about this. I went to Disney World just before Christmas and we took a bus from our resort to a restaurant for dinner. The seats on the bus were full when we got on, and plenty of those sitting were men. I was almost seven months pregnant at that time, so my physical condition was noticeable. Nonetheless, none of the men offered me a seat and thus I stood for the half-hour bus ride, bumping and bouncing and doing everything I could to hold on and not fall over. Not once did any man offer me his seat. I looked around desperately for a sign asking people to give up seats for pregnant women, but the sign only applied to the disabled, and I have a feeling that even if such a sign was in place, it would have been ignored. I don’t typically expect for anyone to offer me their seat; usually I am the one doing the offering. However, given my physical condition and the difficulty I faced in trying to stand, it was frustrating that no one bothered to offer. I understand that most of those men were probably tired, but being front-heavy and standing on a moving bus was very difficult and downright painful for me at times. One would think that the folks vacationing at the Happiest Place on Earth during the Christmas season would not be so rude.

  23. Rachel says:

    Actually, a LOT of women learned the hard way that when men offer you something, they want something in return. It might just be conversation. It might be the chance to stare at your derriere as they hold the door for you to go ahead of them. It might be the ability to ask for your number as you ride the elevator with them after they held the door for you to get on. It might be them following you through a deserted parking lot to your car after you smiled a quick thanks at them for letting you walk through a doorway first. It might be them demanding sex after they insisted you buy the lobster at dinner. I might be them telling people you’re a wh@re or a prude after they lose their temper with you for not reciprocating whatever “chivalry” they insisted you accept from them when you were perfectly fine without their interference.

    Or, maybe it was fine, but you noticed the guy who was so eager to be chivalrous to you totally neglected to offer a seat to or hold the door for your female colleague, who is twice your age, twice your weight, and not dressing to catch anyone’s eye. Maybe you notice that the guy going on about how chivalry is dead is the guy who glances at the other car in the intersection, sees a female driver, and helps himself to the right-of-way with a quick wave.

    Or maybe it’s the guy who puts conditions on his “chivalry” – if a girl doesn’t stroke his ego, doesn’t dress to catch his eye, doesn’t in some way prioritize him when he’s in the room, then he sees himself as exempt from basic manners and courtesy. And then he blames it on “feminism” and “angry butch women” and acts clueless and self-absorbed when he’s not trying to impress a girl (to, you know, get something from her – or at least get a chance to try to get something from her).

    Or it’s the guy whose been oblivious to women standing while men sat for decades and then one day noticed it was HIS wife and family standing and decided to take a long and entitled stand for “chivalry” – which is really just asking other men to spend an valued family time apart from their wives and children even though they planned to arrive early enough to make sure their family had someone to sit comfortably (which is chivalrous in itself).

    Look, if you want to be a polite, kind, observant human being, be one. Just be one. To women and men and children. No one’s stopping you. If you want to be rude, just be rude and selfish and oblivious. Do it. No one’s stopping you. I don’t have the power to change a rude pig into a lovely suave man of God with a wilting smile and shy “thank you” every time he opens a door in front of me. And if you’re the kind of guy who does selfless things without expecting anything for it, you’re already such a rare diamond among your gender that I’ll be able to tell by the awed, protective, and slightly worshipful air that all the women who know you have toward you. But those men are rare. So just be who you are – rude, polite, well-raised, manipulative, wishy-washy, whatever. But stop blaming me. I don’t know you. You’re not going to change my life by having good (or “chivalrous”) manners any more than I’m going to change yours by having good manners.

    • Sarah says:

      Thank you for saying that! That was awesome.

    • JSantorelli says:

      @Rachel: I think you and Sarah need to get off your high female horses. You want to talk about rare diamonds in ones gender? There are more arrogant self-absorbed women who write diatribes like yours and who think they are so wonderful that every man wants something from them than there are opportunistic men. Maybe if you women would develop the logic in your brains to avoid the “big bad boys” that give you a buzz you wouldn’t feel so “taken advantage of.”

      Newsflash, most of us would like to live our lives in peace which would be so much more possible without paranoid women (or women in general) like yourself. Personally I avoid women like the plague and encourage the guys I meet to do so as well. Most of you are more trouble than you are worth. Women are more of a risk to a man’s well-being than walking a tight rope. I’m sure you will be happy to know that I despise chivalry. I will not go out of my way to help women. I am trained in CPR and wouldn’t help any woman except close family. If a draft was ever reinstated I’d skip this country until women were being drafted just the same as men (i.e. on the front lines). In a crisis situation I don’t believe in women first. You’re going down with the ship with the same chance as me. Most guys are coming around to what I’ve been saying for a long time. Don’t worry, you won’t have to worry about insincerity much longer. A few “white knights” still exist but they won’t much longer and good riddance when they are gone!

      • Sarah says:

        I’ve never gotten a buzz out of ‘big bad boys’. I’m pretty happily married and have been for 11 years. I’m not any more wonderful than most people I know. I try my best, same as the person across the road and the next one down.
        You say you want to live your life in peace which is kinda odd since you seem to take great enjoyment in throwing comments out that will do nothing but stir the pot. Not much a peace maker for a guy that supposedly wants peace. I’m not paranoid, living life scared is too much of a waste of energy. I am just very aware that a lot of guys seem to lack the self control and other centeredness to not get whatever they can out of a situation. Definitely not all men, there are a lot of amazing guys out there, but there’s enough of the immature ones that a wise woman is an aware woman. If you have the ability to save another life and choose not to, you are no better than the woman that abort their babies which you called horrible things in an earlier post. You complain that women aren’t ladies anymore, and then you say you want to see them drafted. Make up your mind would ya. It’s no wonder you can’t find a girl that makes you happy. I have met my share of immature boys, but I have never before met someone so horrifically bitter and self absorbed as you. Life must be sad and lonely. I am guessing that your ultimate goal is the demise of the human race. Thankfully, if I was ever on a ship with you, you’d have to go through a couple guys before you would be stopping me from getting my kids safely on a boat with an adult they know to protect them. Up here gentlemen are still in existence and will be for some time yet. And if you manage to talk all the guys you know into avoiding women, well I suppose that means at least your odd attitude will eventually die out. No future generation to pass it on to. Some of the points here are right, feminism has done a lot of damage, just not as much as you so desperately want to think.

        • JSantorelli says:

          @Sarah: I can’t live in peace with the crooked laws feminists lobbied for. A wise man avoids women out of diligence to his livelihood and that of his families. There are a lot more immature women out there than you seem to want to acknowledge and men need to protect themselves from such women. I will not risk my life or reputation on a woman. You claim 2 celebrities and my family and friends don’t count as “examples.” Why do your examples of “immature men” count? Like most women you support double standards.

          Personally I don’t care how women act because I avoid them like the plague. As far as my comment about the draft, I think it is high time you independent ladies start taking some responsibility to go along with the privileges you’ve demanded. That’s equality and you can have it. Hiding behind men is cowardly of you but I wouldn’t expect any less from a latent feminist who has no respect for male life.

      • Rachel says:

        J, like Sarah, I’m married to a great Christian man, have two Christian brothers who are my best friends, and was raised by an absolutely awesome Christian dad. I love men. I enjoy men and appreciate men. Im a tall athletic type so many men dont pose a potential physical threat for me either which means less harassment than my petite girl friends put up with. But not all men are the same- whether we are discussing goodness or strength or Christianity or trustworthiness or any other quality. Same as women.

        I appreciate good manners in men and in women. But I also respect the humanity of men – sometimes men can be tired, loaded down, juggling kids anda stroller and groceries – and I hold the door for a guy like that not because im chivalrous or usurping his “manly masculinity powers” but because I empathize and its the nice thing to do. I also respect the intelintelligence of women – I don’t need to tell an adult human being how she must evaluate and respond to another human. Women are smart, we’ve been out of the house a few times, and the way she reads you and reacts to you is her call to make. Respect her response, even if you don’t like it. She doesn’t have to trust you and she doesn’t have to accept an unasked for favor (nor does she owe you an explanation).

        I’m puzzled by threats of “get your own doors.” Women do, all the time. And it’s fine. The gesture is nice, but if we need to trade it in for equality and value in a man’s eyes, if I have to listen to a few swear words in order to be able to dress without obsessing about modesty and the eyes of every man who may or may not cross my path that day, no question. Easy trade.

        When I hear men respond angrily to the idea that chivalry isn’t valued, it bothersme. When someone waves me ahead as I hold a door for them, it doesn’t anger me. I wonder if the anger isn’t fear that they’re losing a tool of possible manipulation or coercion. It is odd.

        That said, J, I hope life does hold more positive interactions with human beings (woman or not) in the future.

    • FatherOfThree says:

      @Rachel: While your argument was well written and well thought out, I do believe it is somewhat one-sided. While there may be “conditions on chivalry” for many men, there can be conditions on how the acts are received by many women. For example, there is the overweight, shy young man with a bad haircut that holds the door for a group of young women and doesn’t even receive an acknowledgement, much less a “thank you.” Yet he watches as they gush over how sweet the tall, handsome guy is who holds the next door.

      Or how about the woman who calls the poor mail room worker in her office building a pig for taking a second look at her “eye-catching” attire, but revels in the attention from the manager of the department?

      What about the woman who goes out on a date with a guy solely because he offered to take her to the restaurant with the “best lobster in town” though she has absolutely no interest in him as a person?

      There are many people, men and women, with motives behind their actions that may be less than noble. That doesn’t absolve others from being above that level. I could justify not sparing a few dollars for a homeless guy because he “may go and buy drugs.” But that is on him, not me. I give because it is the Christian thing to do, I say “May God bless you” and I move on.

      While a wilting smile and a shy “thank you” may not change a man from his general mode of thinking, I will tell you that people notice general rudeness or indifference to politeness. There have been a few occasions where my son ( from 7-9 years old) has held the door open for women (from teens to middle-aged) and gotten no response AT ALL. He noticed and brought up to me and my wife that they “didn’t even say thank you.” There was no ulterior motive with him. He wasn’t trying to stare at their derrières or ask for their numbers. He was just trying to be a nice person. We had to explain to him that, whether they acknowledged him or not, it was still the sweet and nice thing to do and that he should keep doing it because many will appreciate his manners.

      Our actions as people may be the things that help shape someone’s view of the world or even their mood. As Christians, we should make sure we always act responsibly. You CAN cause a change in the world.

  24. Charles Mueller says:

    I’m sure this is the first time this has ever happened and you are totally correct in drawing sweeping conclusions about the trajectory of society based on your anecdotal experience.

  25. Pingback: Chivalry Is Out of Style

  26. Sensei says:

    Several commenters have seemed to confuse chivalry with simply demonstrating kind and loving behavior to other people. That is not chivalry, that being a good human being.

    Chivalry is going above and beyond treating other people well, it is men demonstrating special and specific courtesy towards women. It arose in a certain cultural context when the relations between men and women were viewed differently (for better and also for worse), and does not (cannot) apply in a culture that assumes feminist ideals as the default. If women decided to assume a pre-feminist attitude towards men, then men might resume a pre-feminist attitude towards women. I doubt the majority of people now would actually consider this a good thing?

    Either way, don’t pretend men have somehow become mannerless louts all by themselves. “Women need men like a fish needs a bicycle,” right? Tell people you don’t need (or respect) them long enough, and some of them will start to believe it, and act accordingly.

    • Rachel says:

      You do realize that pre-feminist, women here didn’t have any more rights than they do today in Islamic saudi, I hope. Less face covering in public, but that’s pretty much it.

      There are “pre-feminist” societies all over the world. They tend to be some of the poorest, least educated, most desperate places. Why do you think that is? Could there be a link between treating half of your adult population as a lesser group (akin to the south ‘ s treatment of African Americans during antebellum) and not having quite the balanced, empathetic, flourishing economy one might desire?

      Please read “Jesus Through Middle Eastern Eyes” – amazing book that covers how Jesus broke with cultural mores of his time. We appropriate so much biblical teaching and twist it to fit our own western perspectives.

  27. thoughtcheck says:

    Several commenters have seemed to confuse chivalry with simply demonstrating kind and loving behavior to other people. That is not chivalry, that being a good human being.

    Chivalry is going above and beyond treating other people well, it is men demonstrating special and specific courtesy towards women. It arose in a certain cultural context when the relations between men and women were viewed differently (for better and also for worse), and does not (cannot) apply in a culture that assumes feminist ideals as the default. If women decided to assume a pre-feminist attitude towards men, then men might resume a pre-feminist attitude towards women. I doubt the majority of people now would actually consider this a good thing?

    Either way, don’t pretend men have somehow become mannerless louts all by themselves. “Women need men like a fish needs a bicycle,” right? Tell people you don’t need (or respect) them long enough, and some of them will start to believe it, and act accordingly.

  28. Pingback: Please Read the Matt Walsh Blog | John C. Wright's Journal

  29. Katie says:

    One week before my second was born, my husband took me to Applebee’s for my birthday. It was very hot and I was a swollen nine month pregnant mess. There were plenty of seats with perfectly non pregnant men in them and no one offered me a seat during our 20 minute wait. But one person did. She was nice and she was also about six months pregnant and she stood up and let me have her seat saying something about hers not being as uncomfortable as mine yet. What? And the other men watched her do this and still did not offer her a seat. It makes you lose faith in humanity.

  30. kmhyden says:

    Thank you for writing that! It’s nice to know that there are still men out there who were raised to respect women and show them respect. I was beginning to think my husband was one of the few left who still opened doors for women, carried things and gave up seats for them. I honestly find it offensive when men don’t hold a door open for me! Somewhere in the back of my mind I’m thinking either their mother didn’t raise them right or they flat just didn’t care or pay attention! Thank you for sharing!

  31. Charles says:

    Hm, another thought.

    I have seen a lot of complaints on here from men saying that women don’t properly appreciate their chivalrous acts. They then defend the abandonment of such acts in the face of such. I would wonder about such people’s dedication to doing what is “right”.

    In my experience I have had women refuse to enter a door I opened, despite the fact that I opened it to let a man as well as her enter, and insist I go first. I was not offended by this, I did not feel slighted or attacked. The woman simply did not wish to have the door held open for her, and that is her right. Let me say it again…..a woman has the right to turn down “chivalry”. You can whine and moan all you like about how it’s unfair or unappreciative. But unless she says “I can open my own door you sexist” or something along those lines; how can you be sure she doesn’t appreciate it? In fact, many women who refused did so with a smile and a thank you. When you demand that they recieve your “chivalry” you are denying them a right and truly are being sexist.

    That’s the part that disturbs me about so many of these responses. I act in such manners to all…women get no special treatment from me. Children and the infirm are the only ones I will do everything in my power to aid. Others recieve this generosity if I can reasonably offer it.

    But back to the demands of accepting chivalry. What gives you the right to expect a woman will be gracious? Perhaps she has personal values based on experiences outside of this singular and rather unremarkable event. if this woman is a stranger your actions likely bare little significance to her life…and the same should be said of her refusal Of your act has little significance in yours. Even if they spew an insult and degrade you on your actions….do you cease all acts of kindness when someone shows they are not grateful? Do you ignore doing the “right” thing because it is difficult or unappreciated? Stop putting the onus on women. Kindness is never accepted by everyone equally…welcome to reality. Either it’s important to you or it’s something you do because you are “supposed to”. Your actions when it becomes difficult expose your true feelings.

    • Charles says:

      Oh…and I have had women hold a door for me when they were there first. I accepted the offer and thanked them. I have had women assist me with bags when I was shopping with my daughter…I again accepted and thanked them. Women, from my experience, offer aid as often as I offer aid. The idea that it should only be men helping women is silly. When you develop a standard that men should always be the ones opening doors, offering seats and helping with physical endeavors you by it’s very nature forbid women from offering the same aid when a man benefits from such.

      It is why chivalry, as defined by acts of compassion by men towards women, is out of date. In the parking lot of a store you can use a grocery cart to transport bags to your car and minimize effort. Also you can ask the bagger to use more bags and limit the weight on each individual bag. The reason for the decline of women being treated as the damsel in distress has much to do with modern advancement. Kindness is proper….classifying women as in need of aid by being women is not.

      This is what is meant by chivalry being dead. The actions outlined as men to women should be outlined as human to human. Personal abilities and availablities and the abilities and availablities of the party receiving the kindness need be the only governing factor…not sex.

    • Rachel says:

      Great points!! Totally agree.

    • Kat L. says:

      This.

  32. eaglecam5 says:

    Some of the commenters here reveal more about themselves than I suspect they wish to. Bitterness and judgment, dis-ease with the other sex, entitlement for just being alive, deep wounded ness from childhood – the list is long and painful to read. Dealing with your own personal issues would be a big step forward toward harmonious relations with others. There has been quite a bit of anger surface here. Sad, I think.

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  34. June says:

    Well said, Mr. Walsh

  35. Dave W says:

    Unfortunately, this kind of attitude is rampant here in Maryland, even in the churches. It is just another sad sign of our slowly declining standards as a nation…Maryland is just ‘ahead of the curve’. As you spend more time here in Maryland, I think you’ll find it very surprising just how common this kind of thing is. I’m sure you’ve already experienced it on the roadways around here.

    However, ‘common’ does not make it right. I prefer to be uncommon and make it a point to go out of my way to open doors, give up chairs, and the such. It may mean a bit of difficultly for me, but I am modeling for my daughter the way I expect her to be treated; and as such, no amount of difficulty is too much if she learns to expect chivalrous behavior from those around her.

  36. Pingback: Chivalry is Dead – A Double Perspective – Part 1: Professor Challenger’s POV | Marbles in a Jar

  37. Dawn says:

    My family went to Disneyland last month. The hotel we stayed at had a shuttle to take us to the park. My Mother-in-law and I boarded the shuttle first (because we were first in line). We sat close to the front. The shuttle quickly filled to the point of standing room only. Then a family of 5 boarded the shuttle with a car seat and 2 strollers. I thought to myself they either needed to wait for the next shuttle or walk. Then I thought, there is standing room still. Even though I was the first on the shuttle, I not only stood, but I held the car seat and helped the father get the strollers on board. There was room to help them out. The shuttle was crowded, but no one was hurt by it. I then also helped the family get off the shuttle and assisted with getting their 3 children situated in strollers. I did this because it was the right thing to do.

  38. jblog says:

    The NOW has told me that opening doors for women, offering them my seat on the bus, even protecting them from danger is paternalistic, offensive and condescending. Who am I to argue with them? I’m merely a white male who doesn’t get, the cause of all of society’s ills.

    If you’re a woman and you don’t like the fact that men are no longer behave chivalrously, don’t blame them — blame the NOW. I mean, right now — go tell them how much they’ve screwed things up with their Stalinist commitment to man hatred.

    BTW, I still hold doors for women and offer them my seat on the bus. The NOW can go screw itself.

    • Sarah says:

      Thank you for being one of the men that is strong enough to do right even when it’s not the popular thing to do all the time. Guys like you are awesome and make this world a much better place.

  39. Ho Can Fuk says:

    Women treat men like shit every day in family court. Why are you not surprised? You got want you wanted; equality.

  40. Pingback: Matt Walsh is wrong about: Chivalry | What is Matt Walsh wrong about today?

  41. Scott says:

    Men, it’s time to put on your “big boy pants.” To use the excuse that a woman may be offended by your act of chivalry is just that, an excuse. Yes, a woman might be offended, but that’s were the “big boy pants” come in ….. simply suffer it …… and do not let it prevent you from honoring women.

    BTW, I would suggest that both men and women can engage in chivalry. For example, we honor the unborn child when we sacrifice of ourselves to serve and protect the child.

    • JSantorelli says:

      @Scott: When your “big boy pants” get sued for sexual harassment from some over emotional woman don’t say we didn’t warn you.

      • Scott says:

        Opening a door for a woman is sexual harassment?

      • Sarah says:

        How does a wise fellow get himself into a compromising position like that anyway? I mean, if you aren’t alone with a person you don’t know enough to trust, then there is always someone else around to vouch for what happens? How does a guy get into a position where he isn’t somewhat protected if a girl near him is a little unstable and nasty? That’s basic being wise of the opposite sex sort of thing even for girls.

    • jblog says:

      Yeah, that was kind of the “The NOW can go screw itself” part.

  42. imnobody00 says:

    Chivalry is dead. Women killed it. There was a two-way contract between the sexes. Women were meant to be ladies (modest, polite, chaste, submissive to male authorities and so on and so forth) and men were chivalrous towards them. When women stopped being ladies, men stopped being gentlemen. It is that easy. They wanted to be equal and they are.

    They were called to love in the manner described by Paul in Ephesians 5. That’s chivalry.

    Exactly my point. Ephesians 5 call to love YOUR WIVES not any female stranger. And it includes this sentence “Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord.”. But good luck in making a modern wife to submit. No submission, no chivalry. Ephesians 5 cuts both ways.

    Chivalry calls for the strongest to serve and honor the weakest, realizing that the other option is for the strongest to dominate and abuse the weakest

    So, in the divorce court, where women are strong and men are weak, women are supposed to be chivalrous towards men instead of taking their money, their kids and destroying their lives and the lives of the kids. Isn’t this more important that giving a seat to a woman?

    Why don’t you speak about that, Matt and about women initiating most of divorces? In our culture, man = bad, women= good. It is very easy to scold men in our culture. It has become a fixture of pulpits and mass media. And social conservatives are the worst. Far worse than feminist. They have converted the Christianity into a cult that worships women. Women are not angels and men are not devils. Both are fallen human beings.

  43. Pingback: And We Wonder Why Chivalry is Dead - Just Christ Ministries - The Abiding Place Of Hope

  44. kyotoredbird says:

    I remember a particular day in college. I was an art student, and I had my hands full with my art box, a few rolled up projects, my empty coffee can (for water for painting), as well as my purse and my coffee. There was a group of men, well-dressed; obviously businessmen who were at the college for a conference, standing right outside the door, smoking. Not one of them held the door for me. What they did instead? Laugh at me as I tried to use my elbow to hit the handicap-accessible button to make the door open automatically. I could not believe it. It’s not even because I expect chivalry because i’m a woman. It’s just good manners! I don’t have much experience with giving up seats since i don’t use public transportation and my church has plenty of seating, but since my particular door-holding experience, I hold the door open for everyone. Particularly the elderly, parents with young children, or people with their hands full.As a childless woman, I would be ashamed to hog a seat when a pregnant woman stands or let the door slam in the face of an elderly person. It’s even more shameful to me if you are a healthy, able bodied man and you can’t be bothered to accommodate the pregnant, the elderly, or a young woman with her hands full.

  45. Hannah says:

    ” Chivalry calls for the strongest to serve and honor the weakest, realizing that the other option is for the strongest to dominate and abuse the weakest. Chivalry is one of the things that separates us from gorillas and wolves and rats. We, as chivalrous men, are called to use our strength in service to women, children, the infirm, and the elderly.

    If we adopt an “every man and woman for him/herself” then no woman will ever escape a sinking ship again. The men could quite easily shove the women aside, jump on the lifeboats, and get outta Dodge.”

    For you to not see how incredibly sexist this is must mean you are particularly dull.

    A better word for this would be “courtesy”. It is courteous of me (a female) to give up my seat for an elderly, disabled, or pregnant person, since they may have a harder time standing or doing other routine things, and I have done so. It is an insult to me to have a man give up his seat for me if I am not handicapped in any way other than “being female”.

    • EJ says:

      Haha right? Why don’t we just live by the BOOK–the BIBLE–which calls us to be courteous to ALL PEOPLE (regardless of gender) in Titus 2? And, “Love your neighbor [male or female, Jew or Greek, to take from another Bible passage] as yourself.”

    • Denny McFall says:

      It is an insult for people to be kind to you? Wow. That must be depressing.

  46. Kat L. says:

    What i am confused about is how men are more likely to not be outwardly polite because of the assumption that women are more likely to be offended, but women are more likely to make up for mans failed actions. Is that not oxymoronic, or do women just not take offense when other women do it instead? Less offensive? Does gender negate chivalry? I understand and got a lot from this article but it seemingly puts fault moreso on women for changing attitudes, thereby changing mens actions. But thats a cop out. Realistically, i dont think enough women find it as offemsive as you say, nor vocalize it enough to effect men in the masses you claim. I think people, both men and women, are increasimgly selfish and entitled. I dont think younger generations grasp what chivalry in performamce truly is because they have never had to exercise it.

    • JSantorelli says:

      @Kat L: Let me make it easy for you. Men got tired of women and their charades. If we fight back (even verbally) we risk getting accused of being abusive jerks. Then women turn up the tears and act like a victim making the guy feel even worse. How do we respond? We avoid women unless absolutely necessary to interact. Sure, people are getting more self-centered, entitled, and for that we have feminism to thank. Everything men do in many women’s eyes is wrong. There is a whole site on the net setup for husband bashing. After awhile you got to put yourself in a guy’s shoes and ask yourself if there is anything decent in women anymore that’s worth your time and energy. Women are the face of double standards as you mentioned. Porn was “bad” until 3rd wave feminism got a hold of it. Now since women direct porn, it is “OK and sex-positive” but the stuff made by men is bad. What’s the difference? It’s all garbage. See the female logic here? It’s the “women on a high horse” theme again.

  47. Melanie says:

    I was so blessed yesterday! I had to mail something at the post office, plus take my little 18 month old. Although she can walk, I carried her and the box (which was almost 16 lbs) because I didn’t want her to get into things around the post office. Outside, I asked the Lord to help me carry both and he did! When I got inside, I was able to slide my box along the counter that was conveniently next to the line, and when I got to the front of the line and was called to the mailperson furthest from me, a very nice black man behind me asked if I would like him to carry my box to the end. I know I thanked him several times and I tried to do so warmly. It was so very sweet of him to offer and it meant a lot to me.

    I’ve had several people turn back to grab a door for me as I carried Isabella through the snow and also once turned my ankle as I came out of a library…three young boys, with voices full of concern asked me if I was ok. Chivalry’s not totally dead, but we all should Over encourage it whenever we see it or experience it.

  48. Pingback: Response: “Chivalry is out of style” | Gender Bridges

  49. Ray says:

    Get to your event on time and you won’t have to wonder why you don’t have a seat. Many women struggle to get their men to church. This story is a shining example of those who do not properly prepare and then take offense to the rest of us who do. The Bible directs us to care for widows and orphans, sick and elderly. You are spoiled and unappreciative. Sit on the floor, the Japanese do it all the time, as I did in Haiti helping people who can’t afford a band aid, let alone a chair to sit on…

    • Els says:

      Wow. I am sure your compassion was appreciated in Haiti!

      I don’t think it was the men who were a trouble to get to church on time. There were three babies in the story. I’d like to see you try to get three babies all dressed, ready, fed, and yourself ready for church on time. Even with starting early and all, sometimes things happen, a kid has a explosion and needs to be completely changed. When that is done, another needs to eat NOW! Newborns are particularly difficult.

      Yes, you could ask the mother who has just given birth to sit on the floor. You could. You could say, “well it is her fault for not getting here on time”. I’m sure she can get down here and up again…. that is, if it was an uncomplicated vaginal birth…. that is, if there was no episiotomy…. that is if she doesn’t bump her sore breasts that are engorged because the baby isn’t drinking well….yes, sure she can.

      Or you could.

      Just because some people in Haiti can not afford chairs to sit on, is no reason to tell a pregnant woman here to sit on the floor. Especially since you know the Bible asks us to care for the sick. I get it that pregnancy and birthing is not an illness, but then again, it can cause quite a bit of pain.

      • Denny McFall says:

        Ray, you obviously consider yourself better than others. That is HUGELY un-Christ-like. Els, you are absolutely right. I give up my seat for women, the elderly, or even strangers who just happen to be new to our church and are perfectly able-bodied men, including the ones form the restoration ministry our church runs. Hey, Ray, how about loving people, and lifting them out of short-comings with kindness, instead of shoving their faces in how far short they fall?

    • Denny McFall says:

      It also directs us to think of others as better than ourselves. It also says not to think of ourselves more highly than we ought. I am saying this as someone who has fed and ministered to people living in an actual dump in Mexico, with tarps for houses and no clothing and food. See? Who is the holiest one? Neither of us, Ray. How about compassion apart from your judgement of what people deserve? Jesus does it all the time. Of course, he didn’t have a place to lay his head, let alone the selfishness to deny an easy service to others.

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