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What Is a Hypocrite?

A hypocrite is a person who criticises the very thing that he also does. Hypocrites speak out their disapproval for something, but go on to do what they disapprove of. They are judgemental but confused people. A hypocrite could be a vegetarian in public, but eats pork in private.

Politicians are the most well known hypocrites. They speak out against certain social ills such as racism, drugs and murder, but many politicians have been found to be involved in one or other social ill. Some speak on ‘family values’ but are most probably having an affair. Even their campaign strategies state all that they will achieve when elected, but when they have the power, they act contrary to their promise.

Some parents are often accused by their children of being hypocrites. The parents could curse, smoke, drink, and be unfaithful but expect their children not to do the same, telling them what bad habits those are. Such a parent is a hypocrite because they give advice contrary to what they themselves do. Hypocrisy is about someone setting double standards: the life they expect others to live and the life that they live. As the judge of what is right and wrong, the hypocrite determines what applies to him and when, with disregard for other people.

Common sayings to describe a hypocrite include: ‘the pot calling the kettle black’ and ‘people in glass houses should not throw stones’. At some point or other all humans experience being a hypocrite. Experimentation and freedom of choice influence this.

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