So I was reading one of John C. Wright's articles about how the sexual revolution hasn't exactly been good for women (stop the presses), and the comments were, as they always are, full of libertarians spouting nonsense and feminists asserting that being objectified is fine, if it advances the program of Marx. But, since one of the things Wright, and another author he was quoting, were saying, was that conservatives ought to be careful not to let the politicization of rape by feminists make them react into skepticism of rape accusations, the comments also contained another beast. Specifically, masculinists. These ones were concerned to deny the very existence of date-rape, and say that women should be shamed just as much as men should for sexual misbehavior (when, if anything, they're still shamed more, sorry). Masculinists are the same guys who object when men are still expected to be breadwinners and think it's just awful women don't have to register for the draft.

I got something to say to them. Man the fuck up. That's the first time I've used the F-word on this blog, and I don't intend to make a habit of it, but seriously: men cannot get pregnant, we're less susceptible to STDs, and we don't have a period. Also, sorry, but women have gotten the shortest possible short end of the stick for a vast amount of time—with the exception of the 3 or 4 High Medieval centuries and the partial exception of the 19th and part of the 20th Centuries, women's status hasn't been so much "low" as "N/A".

Seriously. You know why chivalry makes men the protectors of women, makes them open doors for women, makes them salute women whenever they see them and forbids them to attack women? Because for the first couple thousand years of Western Civilization, women were nonentities. I said it before but I'll say it again: Roman girls had no first names, just the feminine of their clan name, because they exposed all daughters after the first. Greeks were, if anything, worse: the reason they valued homosexual relationships was misogyny, pure and simple. Why, their thinking went, would I want to fall in love with a mere woman? Woman were for making babies, only. You find the same thing in Asian history—it's no coincidence that wakashudo and Neo-Confucian thought went hand-in-hand—and it's hard to see a difference between today's Indian and Chinese gendercide-abortions and Romans exposing their infant daughters. It's a similar story among many Native Americans, even the matrilineal and matrilocal ones.

So yeah, sorry, but the shrillest, most harpy-like feminists are right. Men suck, and the way they treat women sucks, and there's a debt there that needs to be paid. Where the feminists are wrong is how to fix men and their treatment of women, and pay the debt. Nobody can deny, without deliberate obtuseness, that proletarian capitalism is abusive; but Marxism is no remedy. Similarly the answer to men and their past and present (and potential future) misbehavior is not to feminize men or masculinize women, nor to erode gender distinctions. It is to recognize and value women's role in society—make "womanly" as firmly a term of praise as "manly" is—and also to recognize, value, and harness men's role.

And that's why chivalry is the answer. Fundamentally any attempt to reconcile the sexes has to take account of the fact men are, by nature, aggressive. Hate to break it to you but Homo is a genus in the Hominidae or Great Apes, and, attempts to draw parallels to bonobos notwithstanding, we appear to be the most aggressive of the lot. I'm reminded of an experiment that showed that dogs have a more similar learning pattern to humans than chimps do. Because humans may be omnivores, but their ecological niche is still "apex predator"—combine "gregarious apex predator" with "silverback" and, well, I'm pretty sure most people's mental image has a gravity hammer.

Chivalry is the only code I know of (well, hwarangdo, but chivalry is a bit better at it) that takes masculine aggression into account without making any concessions to what might be called, well, "patriarchy". It came into being in a warlike time, but also a time when queens, duchesses, and abbesses wielded just as much power as kings, dukes, and bishops; apparently women bought more books than men, at least in France. The High Middle Ages is probably the closest this horrible ape-tribe of ours has ever come to a matriarchy. I've read things about women in medieval poets that make Joss Whedon sound like Dave Sim. I'll put it another way: the medievals were extremely fond, as indeed all Catholics are fond, of the story of the wedding at Cana. But oddly enough we often pass over it being the first miracle of Christ's public ministry, in favor of a little something else. Namely, Jesus Christ, the Incarnate God, takes orders from a woman. More than that, he amends the Plan at her say-so. Regina Caeli, Cihuapiltzin Coatlaxopeuh: you've come a long way, baby.

Also, though, chivalry offends masculinists and knee-jerk individualists whose view of gender is just bad Plato (or reheated Gnosticism), so that's a bonus right there.

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