Tuesday, September 24, 2019


I realize now what a common problem it is in all sciences—how often everyone confuses facts and conclusions. They used to do it in anthropology all the time, taking their conclusions about the inferiority of certain peoples and passing them off as facts. It still goes on today. Also, consider how many people today argue that evolution is a fact. A theory can never be a fact. A theory is a conclusion, but not a fact. It can be well-established, maybe the most well-established theory ever devised, but that does not convert it into a fact.

A theory or conclusion is a kind of window onto the world of facts, but the window must never be taken as a fact itself. It is merely a vantage point for viewing the facts. The possibility must always remain open that one day, someone will come up with a better vantage point.

Because of the importance of this, I will let stand my last post in August as my post for this month as well. I might even use it, as I indicated, as a new introduction for my book True Jew. See below for the August post. But I will offer here a summary of what the previous post was about:

To sum up where we are thus far: If a defendant is brought into the courtroom in handcuffs, that is not evidence of his guilt. If he is covered in eggs, having been pelted with them by a crowd outside, that too is not evidence he is guilty. If the crowd is heard chanting “Traitor! Traitor! Traitor!”, that cannot count as evidence either. If the prosecutor repeatedly shouts “Traitor!” in his opening or closing statements, that also proves nothing. All these things are evidence as to the mindset of the jailers, the crowd, the prosecutor, the scholars, the theologians, and anyone else who inflicts damage with epithets, but none of it is evidence for the guilt of the accused. And if the chant is kept up for 2,000 years, it still has no probative value. Using the accusation of traitor to prove a betrayal happened reveals much about scholars but tells us nothing about the original events that took place two millennia ago.

© 2019 Leon Zitzer

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