Death To Chivalry


My kid cousin (I don’t care if he’s only two to three years younger than I am) always tries to take my suitcase for me.

These days, he approaches my bags as though ready for a fight. And usually, he gets one.

I am perfectly capable of lifting my own bags, thank you very much. Ovaries do not automatically equal weakness. 

Here’s my question: why is it okay, chivalrous, well-mannered and laudable if a guy picks up my bag, while it’s weird and un-manly for me to help a friend by taking his? I agree that testosterone means guys become a bit stronger, but oestrogen doesn’t make girls delicate lilies. It’s a pretty comparison, but when it comes to insulting us through time-honoured chivalric codes, I draw the line. I’d rather be what my friend called me: ‘She-Hulk’. Although not green, because it really isn’t my colour.

I saw a very illuminating video on another blog on this site, with the caption ‘#ViolenceIsViolence’. And I agree. By what logic is it okay and cool for a girl to beat up a guy, when the same actions, if they happen in reverse, constitute a criminal offence with the blaring name of ‘abuse’?

I’m not saying that men shouldn’t open doors for women. My own friend does that, and I think it’s a sweet gesture. But why do some people think it’s weird for a girl who reaches the door first to hold it open for all her friends, guys and girls alike? It’s a small thing, maybe; but in my experience, the smallest gestures speak the loudest.

Gender equality is a two-way street. If we want the benefits of gender equality, we need to start seeing each other as not just men and women, but as human beings. What we really need to demand is the equality of all human beings, irrespective of race, creed, caste, gender and physical ability or disability, in the  true sense of the word.

I used to see women as the oppressed, downtrodden sex, which needed to rise and topple their oppressors, who were invariably men.  

I have a friend who thinks rather differently.

“You women talk about equality, now you carry your own bag!”

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