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Chesterton's Fence

Last updated February 15, 2022

“Don’t ever take a fence down until you truly know the reason why it was put up” – G.K. Chesterton

(public policy) The principle that reforms should not be made until the reasoning behind the existing state of affairs is understood.

Why we should look at terminology and why words with historical context came to be (e.g. new words)

“Before proposing new words, examine the beliefs and practices that we—and “they”—know perfectly well how to speak about.” Source: On Language Games by Jon Baskin

Similarly: Lindy effect

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