The Instigator
jamccartney
Pro (for)
Winning
7 Points
The Contender
psyduck
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Is "ladies first" sexist?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
jamccartney
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/22/2014 Category: Society
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 888 times Debate No: 46481
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (8)
Votes (1)

 

jamccartney

Pro

Hello to anyone who wants to be part of this debate. I would like to debate anyone who believes the social rule "ladies first" is right. Here are the rules:

1. Proper grammar and spelling must be used. I will not tolerate awful grammar and careless spelling errors.
2. All arguments must be intelligent. There will not be any "It's just the way it is".

I look forward to this debate and hope it will turn out well.
psyduck

Con

I accept, but would like to establish you have the BoP, as you are making the claim.
Debate Round No. 1
jamccartney

Pro

Hello and thank you for accepting this debate. I greatly look forward to seeing how it turns out.

I will begin by stating my reasons for my argument:


1. Women are humans too.
Why are women considered to be inferior to men? They may be weaker in upper body strength, but not mentally. I have met plenty of females that were stronger than most males. I am not saying I would hit a women. I respect them and I would let them go before me, but I do the same to men. They are both humans and I will treat them as such. Here is a line from a site that I found:

""Ladies First" implies that women are entitled to "better" treatment simply because of they"re women? No different than
implying that men are entitled to "better" treatment because of their genitals. Or white people because of their skin color."[1]

It's true. Women are just as capable of waiting in line as men are. "Ladies first" is allowing females to be lazy.


2. Why not manners first?[1]
Like I said in the last point, "[t]hey are both humans and I will treat them as such." Why don't we say "people first" or "manners first" instead of "ladies first"? As humans, we must learn to treat all humans the same way. We must all use good manners instead if segregation and sexism.


3. Sexism resembles racism
"If you replace gender with race there would be a public outcry; for example "White people first!""[2] They are very similar. They are both saying that one side is inferior to the other. We know that black people are equal to white people; We even know that women are equal to men...So who do we act like they aren't?

I have more points, but I choose to leave it at this for now.


[1]http://goodmenproject.com...
[2]http://antimisandry.com...
psyduck

Con

Sexism is defined either as "prejudice or discrimination based on sex" or as "behavior, conditions, or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles based on sex." [1] I'd like to address the first definition first. To prove that sexism exists on this level is to prove that one gender is being treated unfairly. Merely being treated differently is not sexism.

To your first point, I am unsure of what side you are claiming is being discriminated against. Are men worse off because the women are entitled to "better treatment," or are the women worse off being they're being lazy? After reading your first point, I don't know which side is being discriminated against.

To your second point, "ladies first" is good manners. Like it or not, manners exist in our society because of tradition. It's just polite to allow women to take the first bite at dinner. It doesn't detract from anyone's self-worth. It's etiquette from tradition, and not doing ladies first would be simply rude. In an equal society, maybe there's no reason to establish that expectation. However, we've inherited it, and there's no reason to get rid of it.

Also the reason we don't say "people first" or "manners first" is because those phrases make no sense.

Your third point runs into the issue as your first. By comparing it to racism, it seems like men are being discriminated against. However, you then inexplicably equate women to black people.

The second definition of sexism involves stereotyping one gender. This claim has not been established by my opponent, so I won't touch it yet.

[1]http://www.merriam-webster.com...
Debate Round No. 2
jamccartney

Pro

Hello and thank you for responding


I will begin by talking about the two definitions you gave:


Definition One: Prejudice or discrimination based on sex



This definition partly talks about my view on the matter. I think the social rule 'ladies first' is prejudice because it implies that females are weaker and should have to go first because they are incapable of waiting. If that accusation is false, please inform me of the real reason for this unfortunate tradition.




Definition Two: Behavior, conditions, or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles based on sex



This definition does not really explain my opinion. I believe 'ladies first' has created a small stereotype about females, but not much. The stereotype was created first, back when people believed women only existed so men could have a good time, which of course we know is no longer correct.




I shall quote you and talk about what you said: It's just polite to allow women to take the first bite at dinner.




I am going to go out on a limb here and say that you believe in equality, correct? It that is the case, then why do you support the denial of egalitarianism? There are no differences between men and women (except, of course, DNA, size, look, anatomy, etc...).


Allow me to ask you a question: It 'ladies first' was switched around and became 'gentlemen first', what would you do? Would you like it? Would you like being told to go first because you are 'weaker and incapable of waiting your turn? I know I certainly wouldn't.






What you said: Also the reason we don't say "people first" or "manners first" is because those phrases make no sense.

Honestly, I do not think that is the reason. I think the reason is because people don't want to change traditions, even if they are prejudice. And, quite frankly, it makes perfect sense. If you look at it grammar-wise, it works just fine.




I shall now talk about your next point:

I did not say men are being discriminated against. I actually did not say anything about men. Here is what I wrote: ""If you replace gender with race there would be a public outcry; for example "White people first!""" Where does it say 'men'? I also did not 'equate women to black people'. I was comparing 'ladies first' to the racial problems of the early to mid 1900's.

psyduck

Con

I think the social rule 'ladies first' is prejudice because it implies that females are weaker and should have to go first because they are incapable of waiting.

It started as a sign of respect, not as an insult. Men held the power in western civilization, and it was civil to treat women well. In general women are weaker, but the ladies first doesn't have to do with that. Dealing with a female power-lifter who is obviously leagues stronger than the surrounding men would not change the expectation. This debate is the first time I've heard "incapable of waiting" being attributed to women. Historically it was the women who waited around while the men went to the hunt, to work, to war.

There's no implications about male superiority in this affair. If this rule is taken as more than just a conditioned response (which it is), then it typically implies something else entirely: sex. Men want it more, or at least that is the perception. So when a guy is trying to pick up a girl, he'll act very chivalrous towards her. It's more of a mating pattern than anything. And the reason guys and girls are allowed to act differently in this manner is because they are looking for different things in their mates. Different not just physically, but personality-wise as well.

why do you support the denial of egalitarianism?

I don't deny that there are many real factors that contribute to inequality for the gender in the US and even more-so outside of the US. These include classroom expectations, employment discrimination, sexual harassment, domestic violence, sex trafficking, prostitution, sacrifice, and more. I believe when you trivialize the movement with this non-issue, it takes away from the real issues that are affecting women globally.

There are no differences between men and women (except, of course, DNA, size, look, anatomy, etc...).

The ones you list add up to quite a lot of differences (especially DNA). Testosterone can affect the brain in large ways, including a boost in spatial reasoning skills while women in general are better at calculation [1]. We should celebrate our differences instead of trying to hide them.

If 'ladies first' was switched around and became 'gentlemen first', what would you do?

If I were raised with gentlemen first, I'd probably feel a sense of empowerment, like a king with women as my servants. Yes, I would like it. Although I'd probably be conditioned to not really care.

I also did not 'equate women to black people'. I was comparing 'ladies first' to the racial problems of the early to mid 1900's.

I realize that you attempt to equate the situation to the Jim Crow laws. However, your comparison only serves to strengthen my point. Declaring "whites first" would obviously be placing a privilege for white people over minorities. However, you claim that "ladies first" places the privilege of men over women. I fail to see how that analogy works.

The fact of the manner is that the fight for minority equality is an entirely different beast than the fight for gender equality. There are differences between men and women that we have to accept. That's why it's okay to have segregated schools based on gender but not on race.

If you look at it grammar-wise, it works just fine.

"Hey, thanks for holding the door for me."
"No problem. People first."
"Are you an alien then?"
"Nope! I'm enlightened to the struggle for you women to gain equality, and by recognizing you as a fellow person rather than a woman, I help to achieve that."
"Umm, thanks then."

[1]http://homepages.luc.edu...
Debate Round No. 3
jamccartney

Pro

Hello and thank you for responding.

It started as a sign of respect, not as an insult. Men held the power in western civilization, and it was civil to treat women well.

I understand that it used to be a sign of respect because men held power in western civilization, but I do not think it is like that anymore. In modern times, men do not hold all the power. So why has that aspect changed but 'ladies first' has not?

So when a guy is trying to pick up a girl, he'll act very chivalrous towards her. It's more of a mating pattern than anything. "

A mating pattern? You're saying humanity is incapable of overcoming their evolutionary ties? I may be wrong, but I think our species is capable of more than being nice to people so they might be able to have sex. If that is the main reason men put women before them, I am horrified. Please tell me if I am incorrect.


If I were raised with gentlemen first, I'd probably feel a sense of empowerment, like a king with women as my servants.

I have a question: If 'ladies first' began as a sign of respect to get women to have sex, does it still mean that? If we're still following that tradition, that means we open doors for females because we want to have sex with them, correct?


"Hey, thanks for holding the door for me." "No problem. People first."

Yeah...Don't do that again. It kind of ruined your argument.



psyduck

Con

So why has that aspect changed but 'ladies first' has not?

I imagine because it's pleasant for all parties involved.

You're saying humanity is incapable of overcoming their evolutionary ties?

Yes. We still eat/sleep/procreate/die.

I may be wrong, but I think our species is capable of more than being nice to people so they might be able to have sex. If that is the main reason men put women before them, I am horrified. Please tell me if I am incorrect.

We certainly are capable, and kindness happens everyday without expectation of a reward. Well, you can be horrified if you want, but it's true what I said was an oversimplification. People are complicated and there's lots of 'em. But it's more of a factor to ladies first than any sort of power struggle.

If 'ladies first' began as a sign of respect to get women to have sex, does it still mean that? If we're still following that tradition, that means we open doors for females because we want to have sex with them, correct?

It started as a high society practice showing class. Now it's about showing off sophistication, for which sex is a common motive. Also, people hold doors for everyone. It's a societal efficiency/golden rule type thing. Specific ladies first situations are typically about showing sophistication.

I don't think I ruined my argument. It was not the topic at hand, but the stupidity of the phrase "people first" just bothered me too much to leave it alone.
Debate Round No. 4
jamccartney

Pro

I imagine because it's pleasant for all parties involved.

Indeed it may be, but I think society may be ready for a change. Females are gaining more control and are slowly being treated as equal to males, but 'ladies first' is holding that back. Women cannot be fully equal to men until they are treated as such. That is why the social rule 'ladies first' is wrong.

Yes. We still eat/sleep/procreate/die

I was not talking about that and I think you know that. I specified that by saying "species is capable of more than being nice to people so they might be able to have sex". I was talking about the mental aspect of humanity, not the mortal or physical.


Also, people hold doors for everyone. It's a societal efficiency/golden rule type thing.

That is what was meant my 'manners first' and 'people first'. Why don't we just be respectful to everyone instead of just women. I know many people do that, but I am talking about those who do not.


I don't think I ruined my argument. It was not the topic at hand, but the stupidity of the phrase "people first" just bothered me too much to leave it alone.

I understand. I actually did not come up with it. I just thought the general idea made sense. If you noticed, I put it in quotations and cited it from this site: http://goodmenproject.com...;


It is now time for you to make your final argument. Once you do so, it shall be up to the people to decide who is correct on their stance and who has made the better argument.
psyduck

Con

I don't believe the social rule ladies first hurts women. There are no implications about social standing involved. Before this debate, I was half-expecting my opponent to argue that it was sexist against men, for which a better case could probably be made.

All in all, I believe my opponent was on the right track about connecting sexism against women and ladies first. However, what he/she failed to realize is that ladies first was devised as a counter-measure to sexism. It may be old-fashioned, but it certainly is not sexist.
Debate Round No. 5
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by psyduck 2 years ago
psyduck
I feel like our voter didn't bother to read anything, but oh well. Good debate.
Posted by justin.graves 2 years ago
justin.graves
really? Sexist? Really? I call it something not-well-known in today's world called "respect." Meaning a man does something for a woman to show respect for her. But hey! If you feminists want all the guys to forget about respect and look at you like a piece of meat by all means by my guest. I'm sick of girls literally calling me a bigot BECAUSE I PAID FOR A MEAL, OPENED THE DOOR, OFFERED TO CARRY SOMETHING FOR THEM. It would be much easier to forget all that and just think about their boobs. Just sayin'.
Posted by Taylur 2 years ago
Taylur
Are you people for real!? 'Ladies first' is nothing but chivalrous. I can understand some women wanting to be perceived as an exact equal to men, therefore making chivalry quite patronising, but I find that it's just a nice societal gesture -- the woman still has the right to refuse 'going first' if that's what she desires.

I think some people get too worked up over issues that aren't actually there.
Posted by KaleBevilacqua 2 years ago
KaleBevilacqua
Of course "ladies first" is sexist, and I'd be shocked at anyone who says it isn't.
Posted by The_Gatherer 2 years ago
The_Gatherer
I would like to have joined this debate, but unfortunately I agree with the debate starter. It absolutely is sexist. Against women that is.
Posted by SebUK 2 years ago
SebUK
How is that even relevant to the issue? Imbecil
Posted by OdiumHumani 2 years ago
OdiumHumani
Says the guy who's single.
Posted by SebUK 2 years ago
SebUK
of course its sexist
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by WilliamsP 2 years ago
WilliamsP
jamccartneypsyduckTied
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Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
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Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: The truth is the truth.