I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s not because men in every city decided that they’d be happier just being jerks. Nope, the first stabs in chivalry’s back came from women who decided they’d be happier being treated like men.
Before I get an onslaught of anger over issues of equality and gender stereotypes, let me say this.: I’m all for equality, but I’m also all for difference. In centuries gone by, chivalry was a man’s way of respecting and honouring this distinction. It was not about his right to exert power; it was about her privilege of receiving service.
For centuries men and women have existed in a harmonious dance of give and take, each serving each other, until (dare I say) the women decided they wanted to do everything themselves. Goodness knows why they’ve felt a sudden need to open their own doors (no-one ever doubted you were capable of it) but somehow it seemed necessary as they hurtled past equality towards power and dominance, leaving emasculated men in their wake.
For the record, I don’t think chivalry is dead (though it is languishing under the pressure of decades of slow strangulation) and I commend the men who uphold it, but I would say this to the women who are lamenting its rarity: Before you cry in disgust that chivalry is dead, make sure you’re acting like a lady.