If we strive to be the highest, most honorable form of man we must acknowledge and appreciate our counterpart: woman. As inhabitants of the 21st Century there is no room for sexism. It is a barbarian and insulting act to, not only women but, the entire human race. I hope anyone that has read through our Guide to Gentlemanhood articles have noticed that many of the issues we address are not entirely man-specific. Even our Guide to Women advice columns can just as easily be titled Guide to Men, for women. That is because the basic core values of true gentlemanhood are often the same values any human should abide to, be it man or woman. I hope this short guide to abandoning sexism can not only hold true for men but for women as well.
Sexism is simply defined as any discriminatory act against the opposite sex based on conditions or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles. How can we avoid this and how to we make sure we are not subconsciously doing it? Here are some ways to keep yourself in check:
The worst cause of sexism, or any kind of discriminatory hate, is stereotyping. It is a thought adopted to a specific type of individuals lumping the sum of that group to partake in whatever action is described. Often these stereotypes are completely unrealistic with no grounds for basis. Unfortunately, many stereotypes are socially accepted and promoted through marketing, entertainment, and generational influence. A main reason stereotypes can form are from demographically skewed statistics. A recent example are advertisements for yogurt which are predominately marketed toward women. Does this mean all women love yogurt? Do men not like yogurt? The answer to both is no. However, through strategic marketing, you can see why people might begin to believe this.
Whatever you may see on TV or through advertisements is always an exaggerated interpretation of the real world. Stop believing what you see, question everything, and often ask yourself if stereotypes occur. If someone you're talking to makes a blatant stereotype of any person, don't allow them to continue without telling them what they believe is a stereotype. There's no need to argue the issue more than observing the person's mistake.
When you watch a cologne commercial where a man sprays himself and immediately women flock to him, you are watching a form of objectification. That is because the advertisement is using the woman as an object to sell a product. The advertisers are not only stereotyping women they are trying to convince you that if you use their product you can get any woman you want. In reality, it's just not true. A true gentlemen should be disgusted by this sort of marketing and angered by the audacity of the advertisers to think you would fall for such a trick. As well that any person should be seen as just an object of your desire. Men or women will never flock to another for their smell. True interest between a gentleman and a gentlewoman comes from the meeting of minds, attraction through honor and respect. Any man or woman who thinks the opposite sex is theirs for the taking and used only for what they see fit should not earn the respect of another.
Abandon Gender Roles:
Men and Woman both need to stop assuming the other gender's role in a relationship or in society. Similar to stereotyping, gender roles were simple ideas that many believed were the proper positions of men and women in the world. In the 1950s, it was very common for a woman to stay at home, clean, and cook dinner for her husband who worked a 9 to 5, came home, read the paper, and paid the bills. This type of idea is obsolete in a world where both men and women are equal. We have made strides in the last 60 years to allow an individual the right to create their own roles. We are no longer in an age where anything is required of another person until you agree to it with them. A relationship should first and foremost help support your significant other with their dreams and desires. At no point should one demand requirements from the other. Abolish gender roles for the progress of our society.
Treat Everyone as Equal:
The best way to live an honest life absent of hate and discrimination is by treating every person exactly how you expect to be treated no matter their attitude. Often we fall into the habits of the ones that surround us. If a friend talks very sarcastically all the time, we tend to adopt that same personality. It goes the same for someone who is hateful or sexist around us. It is hard not to fall into the same habit to feel accepted and comfortable. However, one must do the exact opposite and lead. Make the other person reflect your personality which is respectful toward all people. If they cannot adapt, and continue on a destructive path, it is better to leave them alone than continue to be tarnished by their influence.
When you treat everyone as you would expect to be treated you are providing a guideline to your expectations. If you are a kind and observant person, more people, who can offer the same to you, will want to continue a lasting relationship. Hopefully these steps can help you lose your assumptions of the other sex and can help you become a better gentleman by treating every person as bright-minded individuals.