This meme has been circulating on Facebook and Twitter for a while now. The original poster (OP) of this Facebook post, one Chris Gramps Reise, cleverly adds that he would delete all explanations, and asks that everyone just Like and Share his post.
As a result, tens of thousands liked and shared the post without commenting. There was no way to know if they actually know “what is wrong with this picture”. Because of his blanket deletion of any explanation, many people shared this post to show that they are “true gentlemen” without actually demonstrating that they knew what was wrong with the picture.
Frankly speaking, this is a stupid meme… and sharing it (without explaining what you think is wrong with this picture) does NOT prove that you are a gentleman. It only shows that you have a need for public approval, and are gullible enough to blindly follow Chris Gramps Reise’s instructions not to explain what you think is wrong with this picture.
Why Is This Meme Stupid?
Because the picture lacks context.
Everyone ASSUMES the guy is somehow related to the girl, when there is NOTHING in the picture that would confirm such a thing.
A picture is a snapshot in time. A freeze frame of a moment. We don’t know what happened before or after this split second. For all we know, the guy and the girl may be completely unrelated.
In fact, the real situation may turn out to be the lady was just “overtaking” a stranger strolling along the same walkway. If you look closely, you will see that the guy appears to be looking down, while the lady is looking straight ahead. More importantly, she appears to be walking slightly ahead of him.
If that is the case, then is there anything wrong with this picture? In fact, in right-hand drive countries, it is considered good manners to walk (or stand on an escalator) on your left, so that other people can overtake you on the right.
They Could Still Be Related
Sure, they could hypothetically know each other. Perhaps they were even walking together. But the point is we cannot know all that from a picture, can we?
Yet, this bloke is being singled out by the Internet as an example of a unchivalrous person.
Talk about someone being innocent until proven guilty. Apparently, for many people, a picture is all it takes to determine whether one’s a gentleman or not.
Dude, It’s Just A Moral Lesson…
Fine, you were just trying to show the young, entitled, self-obsessed Millennials how “a true gentleman” from the “good old days” would behave. Why else would you like or share this meme? 😉
But do you really know what “only a true gentleman knows” is wrong with this picture? Or you are just sharing to show everyone what a gentleman you are… in theory? 😀
Well, that will remain your secret. In case you actually have no idea what “a true gentleman” would do differently if he was walking with a lady on a street like that, let us clue you in.
What Should A True Gentleman Have Done?
No, it has nothing to do with taking his hands out of his pockets. 😀
All he had to do was walk on her right side, instead of her left side. Why? Because a gentleman is expected to walk next to the curb to “protect” a lady from potential “unpleasantness” like splashes from water puddles on the road, a drunk driver barreling down the road, or a snatch thief looking to grab a lady’s bag.
Naturally, if the curb is on the left, then he should be walking to her left. The point is to let the ladies walk on the “protected side” – away from the curb and all the dangers it entails.
What Is The Origin Of This Code Of Conduct?
This harkens to the “good old days” of dirt roads and carriages pulled by horses that poop on the same roads. A gentleman was expected to protect his lady from being splashed with mud and other natural accoutrements of these dirt roads in the “good old days”.
The same “good old days” when ladies were expected to stay at home and keep it spic and span, and “entertain” the husband when he comes home and bear his children. Yes, being “a true gentleman” in the “good old days” involves what a modern woman would today consider “being a real sexist prick”.
Is there any wonder why this code of conduct is also said to help “a true gentleman” to “protect” his lady from the lecherous glances of other men? Heh… 😉
Chivalry in modern times should no longer be about sex or dominance, but about who’s stronger and who’s weaker. The stronger should walk close to the curb, to protect the weak.
Hence, you can have women walking on the curb side if they are with children, or an elderly or handicapped person, who should be on the protected side of the walkway. Or you can have an elderly lady walking on the curb side with a young pregnant lady, or a young mother with a pram on the protected side.
Heck, it wouldn’t even be ungentlemanly for a young father carrying a child to be on the protected side, with his wife on the curb side, because the child comes first. Neither is it considered too feminist if a lady walks on the curb side with her elderly father on the protected side…
Modern chivalry is, in other words, based on common sense… and not on an archaic idea of which sex is more dominant, and which is weaker.