Feminism & Non-Binary vs. Chivalry

“Though I’m a big believer in gender equality, chivalry scores high in my book.” ~ Amy Plum, Die for Me

I was on the train today, commuting home from work.  I had had a particularly trying day at work, and I was hoping above all odds that I could find a seat on the train.  I was standing in front of a man who was with his daughter, and I heard him say to her that they would be getting off at the next stop.  I felt relieved knowing that I would be able to sit down after they left.  However, as they were getting up from their seat, another man, standing next to me, wormed his way past me, and sat down before I could take a seat, and while my attention was focused on him, another man came from my other side, and sat down in the other seat that was previously occupied by the little girl.

New Yorkers would tell me that it was my fault that I didn’t get a seat.  “You shoulda moved fastah!” they would say to me.  I suppose it is true – it is my fault – this is the city where if you blink, you lose an entire day.  This city definitely does not wait, and I already know this, but I really did not expect to to lose a seat to two grown-ass men.  Don’t men offer up their seat to women anymore?  Or is that from another long-gone era?  I wanted to snap a picture of the train car to show you what I saw that has destroyed my faith in chivalry: rows and rows of able-bodied men, sitting all in a row with their faces glued to their phones, and a fair number of women, some much older than sixty, standing.

Feminists will murder me for writing this, but I blame the feminist movement for the death of chivalry.  I suppose men feel that they no longer have to give up their seats to women, or hold open doors for us, and I mean why should they if women are marching for equal rights and equal treatment?  Doesn’t equal treatment mean that train seats and building doors are fair game, and the “what’s good for the goose is good for the gander” mentality applies?  And furthermore, chivalry could never survive the whole gender-ambiguous, gender non-binary, and gender fluid movements. With all this confusion going on with M, F, and X designations, why should men even bother with chivalry?

One thought on “Feminism & Non-Binary vs. Chivalry

  1. Hi Nova,
    Now chivalry has waxed and waned over the centuries from when it first began for a variety of reasons. A resurgence during Victorian times was driven by wide dresses and tight undergarments since women took up a lot of space and might faint if they remained standing for too long. Culture acknowledged the death of chivalry towards the end of the 19th century, but a brief resurgence followed WW1 into the 20th. Down under when I was growing up good manners dictated you gave up your seat for the elderly or the physically challenged. No mention of a women specifically in our culture then. I guess the feminist movement certainly has had a material influence. But no doubt many feminists remain in favour or relish the chivalry practices of old. Best wishes.

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