Weighing Evidence in the Court of Public Opinion
July 14, 2020
We are being bombarded from all sides with information. Some of it is partial information; some in information we do not have tools to process; some is deliberate or accidental misinformation.
But ... it is important know some things because we have some decisions to make. We have verdicts to reach; we have positions to take.
We have choices.
In this blog, I will not be giving you many tools for doing that. My purpose here is caution not to believe everything you see, read, and hear without careful examination, fact-checking, source checking, and reexamination.
I recommend that even for the things you observe daily.
A. Do not trust all of your perceptions without question.
B. Do not insist that the way you saw or heard something was the absolute truth of the matter.
C. When making a strong statement of fact, check and double check.
D. Don't be so sure that eye-witness testimony in court or on the internet is reliable even if the witnesses are good, decent, and credible people (I threw that in the pollute the jury pool).
Do your homework.
There is no one else to do it for you.