Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Election Bias

It seems to me that you are biased. You expect a certain outcome and expecting it begin to interpret data based upon your expectation. Well, maybe not you, but that is the case for me and, I think, for countless others. We did not believe the polls or the O campaign's take on things because we did not want to. But there it is, people voted just like the media was saying they would and just like most of the polls showed they would and our wishful thinking on the unstated or jaded assumptions in those polls was simply wrong.

What can we take away from this? One thing is that we should understand that it is really difficult to be objective when thinking about things or discussing things you have strong opinions about. This is, of course, true. We all know it but then we insist upon some level of real objectivity as we prop up our bad position with good arguments. I suppose I am simply calling for some real humility in your life when it is related to things that are not absolutely clear.

We can and ought to take a solid stand on biblical issues. When the Lord has clearly said then we should be bold enough to declare that truth. But when we express strong opinions about things where we could easily be mistaken, we need to be willing to hear reasonable arguments that are opposed to us. James 3:16-17 For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.  But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. At the least, after the fact, we should readily admit that we just jumped the gun and allowed ourselves to get carried away for the sake of winning an argument, not for the glory of the real truth.

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