Hello, world! Double double standards, and Windy's Law
Hello, world! This is where I will write down any interesting thoughts I come across or things I’ve learned that might prove helpful to others.
The thing that inspired me to make this initial post was a comment on the Hacker News discussion “Amazon, Apple, and Google Cut Off Parler.” User danhak accuses the people who defended the right of a bakery to refuse to make a gay wedding cake while trying to force private companies to host Parler of holding a double standard. User trident5000 replies that you can turn that on its head; the same people who wanted to compel the bakery to make a cake celebrating something they disagree with are now supporting the right of private companies to deplatform things they find objectionable. Replying to both, user WindyLakeReturn remarks:
One thing that continues to bother me is that on almost any political issue (or even non-political issue) where people point out a double standard, you can easily reverse it and get a reciprocal double standard held by the side claiming the other has a double standard. Yet this is always ignored. By always, I mean I cannot think of a single case where I’ve seen the side doing the calling out realize that it was reversible on them. I have seen a number of memes from third parties calling out the two major sides as being reciprocal double standards, if that counts for anything.
Regardless of where you stand on these issues, before pointing out a double standard, it is worth examining if a flipped (contrapositive?) version can be said of yourself. Never before has an Internet comment changed my way of thinking so much. I don’t think this phenomenon has a name, so I’ll call it Windy’s Law or something. It is my hope that doing so will make us all more aware of our internal biases. Having thoughtful conversations on the Internet is hard; we need every help we can get.