A Houston school has removed a quote popularized by a former New York madam after social media controversy over the saying, which was posted in a hallway above school lockers, according to CNN affiliate KTRK.
The quote: “The more you act like a lady, the more he’ll act like a gentleman.”
The decal letters were taken down Saturday, school district officials told KTRK.
Some saw it as sexist or misogynistic. Some saw it as a way of reminding young people about respect.
“It’s perpetuating horrible gender stereotypes, shaming women, and relinquishing boys of all responsibility. It’s sexist, misogynistic, and discriminatory!” wrote Twitter user lbeckman. CNN reached out to the user on Saturday but was unable to get a response.
This is the wall at Gregory-Lincoln Middle School in Houston ISD. It’s perpetuating horrible gender stereotypes, shaming women, and relinquishing boys of all responsibility. It’s sexist, mysogonistic, and discriminatory! I’m horrified. @shannonrwatts #MeToo #HISD
“Why would that be disgusting? I think it’s true in BOTH senses. If you act more like a gentleman, she will act more like a lady. This is to say- if you show nobility, more people will follow suit. I believe people are looking too much into this and CREATING an issue,” Michael Waters tweeted.
A famed former New York madam said she used the quote to guide her “girls” in the 1980s.
The quote has been attributed to Sydney Biddle Barrows, whose arrest in 1984 was national news because of her upscale clients and inspired a made-for-TV movie starring Candice Bergen.
In a 1987 interview with the Sydney Morning Herald, Barrows, a descendant of two passengers of the Mayflower, said she would tell her workers the quote was a “basic rule that you should always keep in mind.”
The quote was on a wall of the Gregory-Lincoln PK-5 Education Center, according to the Houston Independent School District.
CNN reached out to Gregory-Lincoln school, a combined elementary and middle school, for comment but didn’t get an immediate response.
Photo Credit: Greenwood King Properties