en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Hypocrites_(1915_film)#/media/File:Hypocrites_1915_Naked_Truth.jpg – in the public domain
If there’s anything that has been echoing around in my world for the past week, it has been stories and complaints about hypocrisy. Some of the stories are recent, and some slightly dated, but they all have been popping up this week, either a news feed, or by comments from friends and family. They’ve included:
- The usual comments from friends on the right about the pursuit of Trump, while the Clinton camp was let off the hook with regard to private email servers and mishandling of very classified information.
- So-called “environmentalists” who chose to fly, and have big houses, families, or extravagant lifestyles.
- Complaints by big companies, which won’t pay for technical talent when their back is to the wall, yet would be the first to drop or underpay an engineer if the employment situation wasn’t as tight as it is now.
- Folks in the #MeToo movement who have done questionable things in a personal sphere.
- People who rail against guns, but surround themselves with private armed guards.
- “Capitalists” who get corporate welfare (and of course, preach “free markets,”) while having governments (or government-sanctioned organizations) set the price of money by fiat (interest rates), the key to any financial and investment calculations.
- Republicans who rail against abortions, except, of course, for their pregnant mistresses.
- And of course, the long list of Republicans who voted against same-sex rights, while actually, you know… being gay.
- Revelations that a bunch of Catholic priests were doing very un-Christian things with children.
This isn’t new, of course; it’s just that it seems to happen with astounding regularity, and that the hypocritical acts and behaviors seem to amplify with time. If there is a silver lining to all this, it seems like some in the world are quite literally walking away from groups that are hypocritical, or that have hypocritical behaviors.
The real killer bit for me is that these behaviors aren’t tied to the any political ideology; folks on the left, middle, and right are all guilty here. Nobody is perfect, for sure, but very few are even admitting up front that they could be wrong in the first place. If you can admit you could be wrong while making your case, and living a life in close alignment with what you preach (nobody is perfect), then you are far more likely to make converts, and have people take you seriously.
- Who are some of the most hypocritical institutions, politicians (left or right), you’ve dealt with?
- Who are some of the most unhypocritical, even if their worldview doesn’t match ours?
- Nobody is perfect; we all can be hypocritical to some degree, in some parts of our lives. When does this become problematic? One possibility is that it becomes problematic when you don’t recognize it, or don’t try to remedy your hypocritical behavior.