It seems like every time that there is an event which will polarize individuals each side tosses out their “proof” that they are correct via independent incidents, photographs, and evidence of any sort. In many cases what they cite is accurate just as the counter “proof” in a similar or distinct form is accurate as well.
Is the above strange?
Actually it is not any stranger in that I intended to type a brief for me although too lengthy for some explanation of univariate and multivariate probability as it relates to Gaussian distributions, Kurtosis, and various forms of heavy-tailed distributions. Instead, I’m describing elementary statistics in this fashion.
If one believes that random incidents of unrest and violence whether contained to a specific area or more widespread represents a normal distribution of personal emotions or events, they need to view things from some different perspectives. In theory, outliers or points outside the “normal distribution” typically result from bad data, poor procedures, or just an invalid presumption. In real life, however, outliers exist and their relevance to the situation at hand is yet another variable.
In other words there are people who have no respect for themselves, others, and the law. Law enforcement officers encounter these individuals on occasion and are forced to use measures most probably hoped would never be necessary. On the other hand, a law enforcement officer might use measures that are unreasonable for the situation at hand. The reasoning behind that measure may be a faulty assessment of what is transpiring that is actually understandable. The measure may be a result of some implicit or explicit presumptions.
The thing is that the majority of us will demonstrate a least a modicum of respect for ourselves and others. Few people would attack an armed individual and believe that they would prevail. Few people with the power to inflict deadly force upon a weaker (meaning unarmed) individual.
Anyone can find exceptions to my “majority” in the above. Those exceptions, however, do not make everyone on the other side guilty. By implying a Gaussian distribution, I’m actually an outlier if that makes any sense.
Also, whether we admit it or not, things are going to be different when YOU are the one personally involved. If you or I have had say 10 good experiences with anyone, we can bring ourselves to overlook a single subpar experience. If that single subpar experience is a tragic or catastrophic experience, it is much harder to not consider the possibility of it occurring again.
We don’t walk in every person’s shoes. We don’t leave the same footprints. Why should we? We are different. But even though we are different, if we stand facing the same direction with a light shining behind us we both leave a shadow upon which we cannot step upon that of our own creation. We can, however, step upon the shadow cast by another but by doing so we can actually move closer and perhaps see that perspectives can be both different and similar at the same time.