Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Reverse Hypocrisy

Another post I wrote in 2014:

Reverse hypocrisy: A form of hypocrisy where the person excuses lax or irresponsible conduct by others - conduct which fosters failure - but personally follows much higher standards. Some examples:

  • "I'll make excuses for your children using foul language or not doing homework. Of course, I wouldn't tolerate it with my own children."
  • "I'll applaud Jack or Mary's marginal performance but I'd never regard it as even close to acceptable in my own case."
This hypocrisy would be less harmful if its practitioners were not influential. Consider the film star or famous author who privately possesses a strong work ethic but whose public statements portray achievement as something produced by a magic bean called Inspiration. Consider the chief executives who grossly understate what it really takes to get to the top job. [It's as if their aim is to thin out the competition.]

Remedy: Preach what you practice.

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