Having not so much experience myself, I ask the users here to share their ideas on relations with the other sex. I noticed the "Is chivalry dead?" thread and had a few thoughts of my own in addition.
First of all, as a student going into my second year of university, I feel terribly uncomfortable with all of the underlying liberal bullshit that permeates the curriculum. And as a confused student, I decided that it might be, well.. interesting, if not simply amusing, to take a woman's course (ie. feminism 101). Why I decided that was a good idea, I'm still not sure. Part of it was perhaps thinking of all the women I could potentially meet who would be gullible and easily led to believe that I was so liberal and open to equality like they were. Of course, I knew that was a load of crap. But I was bored and needed an elective course, so I figured the worse that would happen was that I'd get an easy grade if I just pandered to what the professor wanted the class to believe.
In short, it was full of crap. First we discussed a Henrik Ibsen play where a desperate women escapes her oppressive, abusive husband and takes her children alongside in order to pursue an education she has longed for. Issues discussed were the roles and treatment of women in society in the 19th century as well as the ethical justification in taking the children away from their father. The ideas focused on were basically that women did not have many choices at the time and were forced to live a life of servitude and lost dreams where they'd always come second to the man, constantly living in their domestic sphere while the man would encompass the whole breadth of the social, political and financial spheres of existence. While it was certainly acknowledged that women enabled themselves to continue to put up with this treatment, it was also said that they did have a choice of integrity that would involve fighting for their rights that most of the time they did not choose.
As the class progressed, the increasing amount of opportunities for women to come out of their traditional roles and fight for their rights was constantly reinforced. However, throughout the apparently 'level-headed' debate, I still got the idea that modern woman lives in the constant shadow of their 'superior' or 'ruling' sex. That although so many opportunities are becoming available, women still live with the ramifications of political and social norms enabled by men in powerful postiions that live on in written word and in our collective social psyche to this day. Also mentioned were the sorts of opportunities women were starting to take on in various fields that were traditionally male dominated. You know the story - women becoming more like men.
My question is (having done some research and obviously observing the world from my own experiences), does this conclusion that women are "oppressed" hold up to the facts? From what I know, opportunities are skewed towards the advantage of men. Women do earn less for the same work (which if I remember correctly applies not to your standard unskilled labor).
As well, is it a big problem that we're pushing all this equality crap on women in specific? Because if we accept the fact that they're not equal, then one question is how/why do we reinforce that they are? Also whether this is a productive way for society to function? Is it more effective that women earn less? Are they stubborn to want more all the time? Are they collectively using a liberal agenda in the midst of an age open to liberal propaganda in order to wedge their way into a nonexistent plane of equality, unity and tolerance? Is it a problem that women feel 'liberated' by their attempts to break out of their traditional roles? Are they abusing their biologically/psychologically predetermined potential to live their gender roles and is this in turn confusing people? Just how rigid are these roles? Is it necessarily a terrible thing if a woman makes more money than the man? etc.
Another thing altogether is courting women. My specific question regarding that is do most of you just pander to the whims of these gullible, vacuous women or do you have a quality check where you entirely avoid those women and instead choose either the solicitude of isolation from the opposite sex or only a woman who doesn't make for an underwhelming intellectual discussion?
Moreso, a general question: are men more intellectually equipped on average than women? Perhaps that's obvious, but I have a debate with myself all the time and find I don't have the real fruits of evidence to back up my own claims and end up reasoning that men have their own brand of intelligence while women have their own. Perhaps it's more a relationship between reason and emotion. Is it reasonable to assume that women are endowed with more of column b? Or that this directly means they are less intelligent?
Perhaps those are useless questions and perhaps it's not clear, but I'm more interested in the social implications of the answers of those questions. How do you treat women, how does it differ to how most people do it, and how/why should others change their behaviours/thoughts regarding this?