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Chivalry in the time of smartphones

Michaela Schull, Staff Writer

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Tinder. Snapchat. Instagram. Facebook. With the rise in technology and all that it can do, it is only reasonable that we utilize it – right? The question is, “Where do we draw the line?”

As millennials, we are the first generation to truly grow up surrounded by advanced technology. In a 2012 survey conducted by commonsensemedia.org, 90 percent of teens surveyed (aged 13 to 17) reported they have used some sort of social media in their lifetime, and 51 percent reported they visit a social media site daily.

Half of teens reported that they prefer face-to-face communication due to its intimacy, but 44 percent still felt social media “somewhat” distracts them from their company when they are in that face-to-face situation. While social media has its benefits, it has made everything almost too accessible.

Think about it. Why cause yourself all of that butterflies-in-the-pit-of-your-stomach anxiety when you can just DM your crush on Instagram? Further, why take him/her out to a movie when you can just invite him/her to your dorm for Netflix?

Another thing to consider is that technology has almost entirely destroyed chivalry. Chivalry as we know it was derived from the Middle Ages of knights and noblemen: a code of conduct, if you will. Chivalry was the “honor code” of the knight, referring to bravery, courtesy, integrity and courtly love. Put that in the terms of 21st century dating, and we are talking about the basic forms of genuine character and respect.

In 2017, what do men and women admire or expect from one another? A good morning text message? (Insert scoff here.) And no, I don’t mean to come off as condescending, because trust me Judge Judy, I’m just as guilty as the next gal in line. But when you actually sit down and think about it, it doesn’t make any sense.

I mean, seriously. I just got out of a year and a half long relationship, and a few days ago, I went out to eat with some new coworkers and classmates. One of the guys I was with held the door for me, and I kid you not, I was dumbfounded! I can’t even imagine how stupid I looked, standing there with my jaw on the floor of Noodles and Company’s dirty entryway rug. I genuinely just did not know how to respond.

I would also like to add that no, I am not advocating for negative gender roles here. I am simply advocating for the importance of traditional dating. Put your phone down and start a conversation with the person you’re interested in. When dropping someone off, be a genuine and caring human being by waiting the extra six seconds to make sure he/she gets inside safely. It truly is the little things.

Michaela Schull is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. She can be reached at  michaela.schull@und.edu

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Chivalry in the time of smartphones