When I was growing up, there was a lot of noise about stopping violence against women. Domestic violence, we were assured, was always some big guy beating up on a helpless little thing.
There was a movie about a burning bed that was somewhat noteworthy, though I never saw it.
The gist was clear: Men were more physically powerful than women and therefore had a responsibility not to abuse that power.
Then a strange thing happened: Women started to demand absolute equality - particularly in regards to physical violence.
Oh, they didn't put it exactly that way, but feminists insisted on women becoming fighter pilots, serving on Navy ships and - ultimately - the infantry and Rangers.
When the Obama administration declared that women should be integrated into front-line combat units, the feminists cheered. Yes! Equality! Smash the Patriarchy!
They were no doubt filled with visions of Lara Croft lookalikes gunning down the bad guys.
Of course, reality doesn't work that way.
Few, if any women can pass even the minimum standards of fitness that combat troops are required to achieve. Those that do will still be at a severe disadvantage in hand to hand combat or strenuous activity.
These are biological facts.
There is a reason why world-champion female soccer teams practice against early-teen boys' squads - men would demolish them.
I mention this because the recent brawl in Berkeley has caused some consternation. Apparently a petite girl took a swing against a stout lad and was drilled for it.
Apparently no one told her that those movies where the tiny girl beats up a room full of burly guys is entirely imaginary.
The girl is asking for sympathy, but in a world where women aspire to be G.I. Janes, what stigma can society attach to a male hitting a female? If there is to be total equality, a woman who slaps a man should expect the result a man would expect: A full-on knuckle sandwich.
Back in the day, the rules were different, and they applied to both sides. A man who struck a woman would be ostracized for abusing his physical strength. At the same time, women accepted that there were certain roles they simply could not fill.
This dovetails nicely with my earlier post about women demanding equal pay, but then expecting special treatment. They demand the right to file lawsuits for vague "hostile work environments" and "verbal harassment" and then they wonder why their male co-workers won't network with them. It's a mystery.
This paradox is reaching a breaking point, thanks largely to the "gender is a construct" mode of thought. If a guy slugs Bruce Jenner does it count as hitting a girl?
What if he (or "it" since Jenner is now technically a eunuch) gets into a brawl with a woman? Does that count as a catfight?
At a certain point, this tension must be resolved because the reservoir of old-fashioned courtesy is steadily draining away. The younger generations aren't going to carry old-fashioned notions of chivalry, and will openly question why violence against women should be treated any differently from violence against men.
When that happens, I predict even the feminists will suddenly see the virtue of more "ladylike" behavior and maybe develop an appreciation for older norms.