Why do people advise being friends with a girl and getting to know her before asking her out? I have lost several good female friends that way?

Only 1 out of 4 even talked to me about it and asked me to stop. The other 3 just either blocked me, completely avoided me, or just down right turned mean towards me. Is it really that hard to tell your guy freind that your not interested and that you just want to stay friends cause that is all it would take to end it. Allowing us to stay friends.
Why do people advise being friends with a girl and getting to know her before asking her out? I have lost several good female friends that way?
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