I'm going to apologize in advance-- I'm not nearly as eloquent as many of you. I'm one of your younger, sillier Atheists. I hope though that you still give my ideas a chance. Who knows, maybe my directness will prove refreshing!
Chivalry has always baffled me. In my mind it generally equates to "Men repressing the asshole side of their personality so that you will bear their young". To others, it means, "Open the door for me, pussy." I've always felt like men sort of do that sort of thing because their parents have always told them they have to. Like church. But maybe I'm wrong?
There's this boy in my art class. He took one of my besties to prom. He happened to hear that I went to a feminist lecture and he laughed a light (but direct), condescending laugh... which I ignored because I'm so... feminine. A few days later, I walk into class, and it's the first period of the day so the chairs are all stacked on top of the desks. I go to take my chair down, and this kid immediately starts yelling and runs over, takes my chair, and sets it down. I yell at him, mostly joking, and I point to Joe, sitting across from me and ask why he had to steal my chair instead of Joe's.
Him: "Because Joe's a MAN!"
Me: "Haahh, so you stole my chair because I'm a woman?!?" <-- Thought I was joking
Him: "YES!! ...It's not a BAD thing..."
Me: *says nothing in utter shock*
I marvel at this boy's idea of the world. He's in for a good shot of disillusionment in college. I've heard men complain at how women will get mad if you open a door for them, and also get mad if you won't. I've never seen this happen, personally, I think it's mostly a paranoia.
This is a bit different. This is not anything groundbreaking or horrid, but it did make me think. It's the equivalent of stopping a girl from 20 feet back, pushing her away from the door, and then opening it for her. It doesn't make anyone's life any easier. Meanwhile, poor Joe may be carrying a stack of boxes, and no courtesy is shed upon him.
So what have I done to deserve the "respect" that is portrayed through the opening of doors, walking of home, and picking up of pencils? (Maybe I'm not accustomed. When I went to prom, and the door was opened,
I would literally wait a second or two before realizing it was for me.)
It sounds nice enough on the surface, but really, I don't think my vagina qualifies me for anything special that we can't bestow upon men as well. I've never been a huge fan of the feminism where we treat women like men. Really, I think we should be treating men like women.