Law School Discussion

Terror in the Skies

superiorlobe

Re: Terror in the Skies
« Reply #40 on: July 27, 2004, 07:46:06 AM »
Being imprisoned is the result of being convicted of committing a crime. Being convicted of a crime is not necessarily the result of committing a crime.

The implication that because young black mean are imprisoned at a high rate they must commit crimes at a high rate constitutes a logical fallacy.

Explain the logical fallacy.

I thought that is what you were going to say.  However, you overlook the fact that being convicted of a crime is a very good indication that you may have committed the crime. It is not as though there is absolutely no connection.  If a guy walks up to you on the street and says "I have been convicted of murder" do you think that gives you any reason at all to think that that man has committed a murder?  If so, are you committing a logical fallacy?

Suppose you are hungry and you drive into town.  You see a restaurant called "Pizza Hut."  There are also large banners hanging outside advertising a special sale on Pizzas.  Would you be committing a logical fallacy if you went into the restaurant expecting that they serve pizza?  After all, just because a restaurant is called Pizza Hut and advertizes pizzas doesn't mean they have to serve pizza.  They could serve exclusively Indian food.  I mean there is nothing that forces them to serve pizza just because they are called Pizza Hut and advertize pizza.

You shouldn't jump to conclusions based on superficial appearances.

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Re: Terror in the Skies
« Reply #41 on: July 27, 2004, 08:10:36 AM »
Um...funny story is I went to Boston Market one night w/ my bf and his mom. They took our order without any problems and rang us up for it. After the fact, they tell us, "By the way we're all out of chicken." No joke they handed us our sandwhiches w/ turkey instead of chicken w/out even asking if that was okay. But this point better illustrates just how dumb and rude some of the ppl are in Philadelphia.

However, aside from that fact, 99.99% of the times that I've walked into a fast food chain and expected them to serve their typical course, they did. So I am generalizing that if I see a Pizza Hut restaurant, they will serve pizza, based from experience. The physical appearance is different than your other example since Pizza Hut advertises pizza on tv and in their name. If they didn't serve pizza they perhaps would not make very much money. Also, you're forgetting the fact that it's a public company so any big decision like that may surely rock their stock ownership and may even have to be voted upon by the shareholders. In other words, this information would be made public.

As for the first example, that man really doesn't have any unique traits in his appearance, other than being a man. Although he is disclosing the information to you, his motives for disclosing such information are still unclear compared to Pizza Hut's motivation to advertise to make money. He could want to ask you if you're a lawyer that can clear his name. *Perhaps you're the one doing the advertising by walking out of your office and you physically look like the guy on the advertising picture in the window.* He may be lying in order to scare the *&^% out of you to rob you. So in these two examples it can be seen that his own advertising of the fact does not necessarily mean he's telling the truth.

Even if he were telling the truth, it does not necessarily mean that he commited a single crime. Or he may have actually commited a different crime. Case in point, he committed burglery that same day, some one drove a gettaway car that was seen by a witness and his fingerprints are all over the house. A few hours later, the homeowner is found shot and dead in his home. Even if a jury were to convict him for the murder, it doesn't necessarily make it the actual truth, it is just a judicial truth.

superiorlobe

Re: Terror in the Skies
« Reply #42 on: July 27, 2004, 08:24:53 AM »
Ok.  In my example, let's suppose the guy who tells me he was convicted of murder really was convicted of murder.

If I am to believe the reasoning of everyone else on this board, the fact that this guy was convicted of murder gives me nothing to go on as to whether he actually did commit murder.  The best we can say is that his having committed a murder is a "judicial truth".  And if I were to suspect that he actually did commit a murder (in "real truth") then I would be committing a logical fallacy and would be a bigot to boot.

Here's some news for all of you: most people who are convicted of committing crimes actually did commit the crimes they were convicted of.  It is not like a conviction is as good an indication of having committed a crime as flipping a coin.  Every once in a while someone innocent is convicted and when this is brought to light it makes a great deal of news -- so perhaps you are judging by the balance of reporting in the news when you claim that it is a logical fallacy to suspect that a conviceted person is also guilty.

As always, just because someone has a conviction doesn't mean that person is guilty.  I realize that.  However, you are making it sound like the fact that there is a 0.1% chance that the person is innocent means that I should reserve my judgement and consider it equally as likely that the person is innocent as guilty.  This is the fallacy -- taking a rare and unusual circumstance and making a broad generalization from it.

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Re: Terror in the Skies
« Reply #43 on: July 27, 2004, 08:40:22 AM »
"And if I were to suspect that he actually did commit a murder (in "real truth") then I would be committing a logical fallacy and would be a bigot to boot."

Why would you be a bigot if it's just a man? No one ever mentioned he was a minority.

It may be true that ppl in jail are not completely innocent. They typically have a track record that started out when they were 15. However, I think juries are pretty stupid ppl that are unfamiliar w/ the definition of laws, meaning they could be a doctor, but if they don't know what manslaughter 1 means they are of little use. Sure the judge may try to inform the juries of the exact definition of a crime, but these definitions often have complicated, vague language. So the jurors may forget what the def. is or may be to afraid to ask for a clarification.

What I think happens a lot in our judicial system is that prosecutors try to bring you up on all the charges possible, especially the ones that carry a lot of weight so that they can plea bargain later on. I think prosecutors knowingly charge ppl for hefty crimes that doesn't fit the description of what happened since they are hoping to drop it down to a lesser charge that does fit in the negotiations.

So my point is that if a prosecutors charges someone for a crime that doesn't fit the description, the defendant realizes this and goes to trial, but the jury is too stupid to realize this discrepancy, the guy gets convicted of a crime he didn't commit. Sure he may have committed crime X and not crime Y, but he's still convicted of crime Y which is a greater charge.

jgruber

Re: Terror in the Skies
« Reply #44 on: July 27, 2004, 09:01:51 AM »
How in the world did you determine this? 

Here's some news for all of you: most people who are convicted of committing crimes actually did commit the crimes they were convicted of.

superiorlobe

Re: Terror in the Skies
« Reply #45 on: July 27, 2004, 09:08:03 AM »
How in the world did you determine this? 

Here's some news for all of you: most people who are convicted of committing crimes actually did commit the crimes they were convicted of.

I didn't determine it.  I read it somewhere a while ago.  No, I don't remember where.

It won't bother me if you go through life thinking that a criminal conviction is not an indication of guilt, however.  Good luck in law school.

jgruber

Re: Terror in the Skies
« Reply #46 on: July 27, 2004, 09:11:06 AM »
You heard it somewhere?  Pretty slim.

It won't bother me if you go through life with this severe myopia.

How in the world did you determine this? 

Here's some news for all of you: most people who are convicted of committing crimes actually did commit the crimes they were convicted of.

I didn't determine it.  I read it somewhere a while ago.  No, I don't remember where.

It won't bother me if you go through life thinking that a criminal conviction is not an indication of guilt, however.  Good luck in law school.

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Re: Terror in the Skies
« Reply #47 on: July 27, 2004, 09:12:33 AM »
Why do ppl always bring that up..."Good luck in law school." Meaning we're supposed to be f-ing morons that won't be able to survive because of our inferior reasoning skills according to superiorlobe. Dude, each time I think you're wrong I don't tell you, "Good luck in law school w/ that reasoning."

Yes, reasoning is important in law school. However, it's the professor that's going to determine who has made great valid arguments, regardless of the position taken, not any of us on this board.

jgruber

Re: Terror in the Skies
« Reply #48 on: July 27, 2004, 09:14:34 AM »
The argument is only valid if the underlying facts are at least credible.

He gives us 'news' based on something he read somewhere some time ago.
That won't fly in law school or the legal world.

Why do ppl always bring that up..."Good luck in law school." Meaning we're supposed to be f-ing morons that won't be able to survive because of our inferior reasoning skills according to superiorlobe. Dude, each time I think you're wrong I don't tell you, "Good luck in law school w/ that reasoning."

Yes, reasoning is important in law school. However, it's the professor that's going to determine who has made great valid arguments, regardless of the position taken, not any of us on this board.

superiorlobe

Re: Terror in the Skies
« Reply #49 on: July 27, 2004, 10:38:23 AM »
Yeah I do think my reasoning is superior.  *shrugs*

It is a waste of my time to try to prove to people (who are determined to remain unconvinced) that a criminal conviction is an indication of anything other than innocence purer than the driven snow.