Investigating a Murder Versus Getting Someone Convicted for a Murder

I want to make clearer my distinction between research and advocacy: It is similar to the difference between investigating a murder and trying to convict a particular of a murder.

The murder investigation may still go wrong, of course, and arrest an innocent man. And the person trying to get a defendant convicted may be absolutely correct in their conviction that the accused really is guilty. And we may all be happy if they get the conviction, and, say, a serial killer is put away.

Still, the distinction is important to keep in mind. And it is important to remember that in advocacy, people are not searching for the truth: they are promoting a point of view. (They may be promoting it because they think it is true, or they may not.)

Comments

  1. This seems to be very analogous to the problem of theory versus practice in ethics, Gene! Especially relevant is this: 'in advocacy, people are not searching for the truth: they are promoting a point of view. (They may be promoting it because they think it is true, or they may not)' !

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