I told my son something I was going to do. He said, “Really?” with the tone of that person who thinks you are wrong.
I said, “It seems fair to me.”
He asked, “Should you be fair to someone who is not fair to you?”
Hmm…I don’t know. Should I reject my idea of what is fair? Yet it does not seem fair to be unfair. Is that circular reasoning or some other logic that is elusive to my brain. I understood why he was saying that. We believed that the police and justice system was fair until we realized that it was not. That is not just because he was wrongfully convicted that we believe in the unfairness of this system. We saw if for ourselves, and I realize the gross unfairness in every case of wrongful conviction that appears in my Twitter feed or news feed. So maybe he is right. Perhaps you cannot play fair when the playing field is not even. Perhaps it depends on circumstances and changes with each situation. Certainly, you should probably not be fair to someone else if you hurt yourself. Principles and ideas of fair play will not carry you through everything.
So, should I be fair if someone has been unfair to me? Should I be fair if it will not be appreciated or acknowledged? Is the reason to be fair simply because you want people to view you as a reasonable fair person? Or is being fair because you need to see yourself as a fair person? Should you consider if that other person has the same viewpoint of what is fair? Should you factor in the possibility that the other person really does not care about you or being fair? What is your reason for wanting to be fair? There are so many decisions in life that you never know are right or wrong until they are done. Whatever you decide, you know someone will think you are wrong.