Gentlemen Know Best

If Joe Biden wants to do something about sexual assault on campus, why doesn’t he encourage young men to behave like gentlemen? A gentleman would not force himself on a woman and would certainly not take advantage of a woman who lacks full possession of her faculties of judgment.

Much of the “assault” on today’s campuses arises from predatory behavior on the part of males when confronted with drugged or inebriated females. Biden seems like an old-fashioned type of guy, recalling that on the mean streets he came from, if a man struck a woman, “you had the job to kick the living crap out of him.” A much better old-fashioned directive would be to help young men develop good character.

Biden might recall such movies as “The Philadelphia Story” in which James Stewart vociferously denies having taken advantage of a tipsy Katherine Hepburn because, as he says, there are RULES about that kind of thing. And “gentleman” here does not mean some dandified aristocrat pinching snuff. On the contrary, the Stewart character is a rather ornery, resentful, hard-scrabble, low-level journalist. But observing those rules was something men at all levels once held to as a matter of honor and was a mark of genuine equality among them. As opposed to the phony “equality” that arises when traditional rules are scotched, when young men and women are thrown together and prompted to have sex, and when progressives are presented with the opportunity to fashion draconian mandates to control other people’s lives and give meaning to their own.