In which humans lie to themselves

From back in 2000, here’s an article about anti-abortion activists who get abortions, and how they justify it. A lot of people will take this as an example of how the right in the US is full of hypocrites, but that’s not quite the full picture: humanity is full of hypocrites.

Recently I got a parking ticket for parking my motorcycle in a residents-only spot in Cambridge. I’d assumed (foolishly) that because Somerville doesn’t require resident permits for motorcycles, Cambridge must have a similar policy. Now, Cambridge doesn’t enforce this law very carefully, but nonetheless it’s a law, designed to decrease traffic in Cambridge by encouraging people to take the damn train. I agree that traffic in Cambridge sucks, that global warming is horrible, and that fewer people should drive in Cambridge. Yet I sometimes drive, because I much prefer riding a motorcycle to sitting in a train. I was incredibly annoyed when I got that ticket, even though I agree with all of the laws and planning decisions that put it there.

Maybe I’m not as hypocritical as someone who wants to outlaw abortion who goes and gets an abortion, or a tort-reform advocate who sues for millions in punitive damages for a slip-and-fall accident, but I sympathize with them anyway. We all share that human tendency to expect special treatment for ourselves.

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