Is chivalry slavery?

This time we’re going to do something a tad bit different, although I’ve done it once before I think on this blog.

Instead of me posting a long article on something, I want to get your ideas on a difficult topic. I’ll be in the comments (am I ever not?) talking with you all, but I want you to start it up. Don’t feel shy, and say your mind! Think with lexicology. 😉

So the question is this: Is chivalry slavery?

What do I mean by that? Well, by chivalry I mean showing deference and respect to others, particularly to females. By slavery I mean the kind of unjust servitude and subservience enforced by tyrannical power over people of supposed lesser status, particularly to those of a different skin color.

If you want to know where the question came from, you can watch this very infuriating video (be forewarned, it might make you angry, haha):

So I’m curious… what do you think about this issue? Comment and let us know!






22 Responses

  1. It’s not slavery if you WANT to do it.

  2. *chuckles* This gentleman needs to check his history a bit more clearly.

    Not only that, but if I should do everything he says a man does a part from a woman in that video, I have a definite feeling that he would find a greater list of wrongs I have committed in hurting his pride as a man and in stealing his spotlight as a man. *shrugs* In his scenarios, women lose either way.

  3. Like Andrea said, chivalry is supposed to be something you want to do. And besides, most of the aspects of chivalry aren’t even really covered, such as basic respect and things like that, that make men want to do things like hold doors. We’re certainly not being forced into that. I’ve had women get irritated at me over doing that.

  4. I didn’t watch the video, but I do have a thought…

    I once told a group of ladies that one of the things that bugs me about chivalry is actually their fault. (Which doesn’t sound chivalrous, but hear me out!)

    I brought up a scenario that I’ve been a part of several times. It goes something like this:

    Me: “Hey, you’re shivering and you left your jacket upstairs. Can I get it for you?”

    She: “You’re sure it’s no trouble?”

    Me: “No problem at all. Do you want me to go get it?”

    She: “Well… Only if it’s no trouble.”

    Me: “I’m happy to do it!”

    She: “Okay. But I really hate to think of you running up the stairs just to get my jacket…”

    The point here being that we guys don’t ask if we can do something chivalrous unless we’ve already made up our minds that we’re willing to do it. So it’s not slavery in the least. It’s willing service!

    (And incidentally, the group of ladies who were given that example all decided they needed to give a straight yes or no answer in the future when somebody asked such a question. 🙂 )

    • I watched about halfway through the video.

      I think that it is worth saying that I do believe that white men get discriminated against in general today- in a way, at least. We’re the mean majority who abuses everyone else.

      I also think that this fellow makes a point in that *if* you are going to say that men and women are equal in everything- not simply equal in value, but in *everything* except the most obvious physical aspects- then when you make these distinctions you have a double standard.

      In other words, if the feminists want to be able to have the “freedom” to act like men, they should also have the *responsibility* to act like men. If G.I. Jane wants the freedom to join the Army then she should have the responsibility to make the same physical fitness requirements as the men, and so on.

      That said, I do NOT believe that men and women are equal in everything. They are equal in value- they are both made in The Image of God. But they aren’t the same. Men are (usually) stronger. Women are (usually) prettier. So on.

      More importantly, both are called to specific things by God, and so as Christians we should be glad to fulfill those roles. That’s why I as a man want to open the door, or carry the purse, or give up my seat, or take the bullet. Because that’s what God made me to be- a man! That’s my Scriptural calling. I love it. I’m proud of it. It’s not slavery- it’s a joy!

      “…showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel…”

    • Yes, often the reason we are doing it is because we would rather take the trouble on us rather than on them. Of course it’s trouble… that’s the point! If it was completely easy, we’d probably let them do it. 😀

  5. (Oops, sorry Jordan. I meant to reply to the article, not your post.)

    • Haha, no problem, Gabriel. 🙂

      Yeah, I almost didn’t finish it myself, it was getting pretty annoying.

      Yes! Someone else who sees it too. The “oppressed minorities” walk all over the others while still complaining about their supposed injustices. That’s the whole brunt of feminism, and it happens with whites and blacks too.

      True… if you are fighting to defend yourself from being oppressed by someone so you can be equal with them… aren’t you accepting their point that you are unequal?

      I’m glad someone brought that up… we are equal, but not equivalent.

      Great comment, Gabriel. 🙂 You covered everything I would have covered I think. God loves individual and unique roles, each one respecting and serving the others.

  6. (First, I indulge my inner pedant.) If you define the two terms that precisely, you’ve reduced proving them distinct, non-identical, and even non-overlapping to a first-day-of-Logic-101 problem. This is not necessarily helpful. 🙂

    (But more seriously …) No one is more certainly a slave than he who will not and therefore cannot bow to those who are by nature or by divine dispensation above him. Chivalry is, at least ideally, a voluntary servitude in imitation of and obedience to Christ, either a natural outgrowth of or a strengthening exercise for the new nature. The specifics of chivalry per se are hardly important, but the principles of humility it is intended to teach—in particular, treating those who, being weaker, he might suppose to be his inferiors as his superiors instead—seem sound.

    • * chuckles * True, that. I couldn’t really resist giving my own little refutation of his talk in an extremely simple way. But at least it got people thinking in the right direction, eh? 🙂

      That is a beautiful and apt definition for chivalry, and I agree completely about the protocol for following it being almost entirely arbitrary. The motive and heart must still be practiced though, and articulated meaningfully, no matter how we manifest it.

  7. I watched over half of the video, and somehow I found his lack of understanding to be hilarious. Should I?

    He does get a few of his facts wrong as well. First, chivalry is hardly expected anymore. And second, one does not ONLY act chivalrously toward women. It is chivalrous to stand whenever ANYONE enters the room.

    To Jay I would like to point out that slavery does not have to be unjust or racist, although that is clearly the type of slavery the narrator was comparing chivalry to. .

    • I found it to be so as well. Though I am angry with the worldview.

      True, chivalry is hardly expected any more. And it isn’t an act of tyrannical subservience. You do those things to anyone you want to respect, whether it’s your parents, elder, authority, leader, or a girl. Of course one demands respect of a slave, but that’s not the only possible motive for respect.

      And yes, I would agree with you on that. Indentured servants are basically slaves, although with a better reason and treatment.

  8. It’s funny you posted a link to this. A friend posted it on FB recently, and both of us have plans to do a video response to him…

    • That’s how I found it, actually. 😀

      I debated answering him directly, but I honestly didn’t feel like the expenditure of energy was worth it. If he was wanting to learn, he wouldn’t have posted the video… the answers are abundant and obvious. Us bringing it directly to him would only help those who are watching his video and seeing us. Maybe. So I did this instead. 😀

  9. Wow. That video made me fuming mad, and almost ashamed to be a woman for the supposed injustice I am doing to men who are chivalrous to me.
    My dad always taught me that as a girl, i should expect men to be chivalrous. It means that they actually care for and respect me identity as a female.
    Jordan was right. Slavery has no choice. Chivalry does. And men who choose to be chivalrous just show that they are better men.
    Gabriel is also correct in saying that though men and women are equal in value, they were made to do separate things.
    Don’t even get me started on childbirth.
    But thank you for sharing this, Sir Emeth Mimetes. It’s intriguing–I might want to write a blog post about it.

  10. Well, I’m not sure if it is slavery, but I think it’s unfair how men are the ones who are usually expected to be chivalrous. If women want to be truly equal to men, they should do chivalrous things for men as well. Otherwise, it’s sexism.

    • Depends on what you mean by equal. The whole point of chivalry to women is to demonstrate respect and protection for the weaker vessel, honoring and blessing them. Not because they are lesser, but because they are different and designed to be weaker in some ways and stronger in others. It is our job to defend, protect, and provide for them, and thus one-way chivalry makes complete sense.

  11. […] Is chivalry slavery? ( […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: