cut both ways


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Encyclopedia.
Related to cut both ways: stick with, at first, so much for

cut both ways

To have good and bad effects at the same time. You may dislike dogs, but what will become of your cat if the homeowners' association employs this new "no pets" policy? It will cut both ways, after all.
See also: both, cut, way

cut both ways

to affect both sides of an issue equally. Remember that your suggestion that costs should be shared cuts both ways. Your division will have to reduce its budget as well. If our side cannot take along supporters to the game, then yours cannot either. The rule has to cut both ways.
See also: both, cut, way

cut both ways

Have a mixed effect, have advantages and disadvantages. For example, Their solution will cut both ways; it'll take longer but is permanent. This metaphoric expression alludes to a double-edged sword. [c. 1600]
See also: both, cut, way

cut both ways

If something cuts both ways, it has two different effects, usually one good and one bad. Celebrity cuts both ways, of course, and the benefits do not always outweigh the disadvantages. Note: You can also say that something cuts two ways, with the same meaning. Evidence of a harsh childhood might cut two ways with a jury. It might create sympathy or it might be seen as proof that the defendant was likely to become a criminal.
See also: both, cut, way

cut both ways

To have both favorable and unfavorable results or implications.
See also: both, cut, way
References in periodicals archive ?
However, a Swansea win could cut both ways for Leeds, as if they suffered a defeat against Leicester, they could find themselves below the Welsh club in the table.
As for the idea of an Internet-savvy public supplanting the power of lobbyists, Davis said that cutting-edge technology can cut both ways.
The political implications of this theory can cut both ways.
But meteoric broadband successes can cut both ways, and the market is showing clear signs of maturation.
If the referee supervisor in the stand is allowed to make recommendations to the SFA which can incriminate people, then it should cut both ways.