Thursday, July 29, 2004

Raising the Bar

One way of attacking people who do something which you dislike is to complain that they are "raising the bar".

If private citizens or a Jewish school keep a Chumra (e.g. Cholov Yisroel or Glatt Kosher) which you don't, you can say that they are raising the stakes which hurts everyone. ("Now everyone will be expected to follow those standards and those who don't will be looked down upon." "Everyone will now have to pay for Glatt meat.")

If individuals spend lavishly on a simcha, neighbors complain that they are "raising the bar". And now everyone has to maintain those standards.

Of course real integrity would be to maintain one's (lower) standards because you think your way is correct.

One example in recent years how this has manifested itself is through Shaloch Manos, which become more extravagant by the year. So some people opt of giving Shaloch Manos completely or complain that the bar has been raised too high.

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