This is commonly seen in business advertisements such as the one depicted earlier, or in the form of media communication like news channels that are designed to hold a watcher’s attention, at times, by causing paranoia. Such information could sometimes be partially true but by saying that one out of every two people wearing a burkha, whom you walk by on the road is a terrorist, psychology is used to cause fear and therefore hold one’s attention to the toilet paper advert soon to come up. Gun sales, due to this post 9/11 sky rocketed as people were so paranoid that they would take any measure to protect themselves.Order now
In such a case, variables such as being in the middle of Afghanistan are not defined and a statistic like this by itself, although telling the partial truth, is camouflaged on the intertwined use of language and there is in turn a good chance that the essential information is lost and such manipulation could make people’s perceptions of the statistic wrong. So in such a scenario, one should look at the historical background that resulted into the comeuppance of a particular statistic, for example, the fact that America as a nation had a negative interaction as a result of which a particular race was blamed should be questioned.
One should evaluate the extent of accuracy of communication the nation’s mass media employs. The fact that commercial media could use people’s paranoia to improve their TRPs shouldn’t be ignored. Secondly the person analyzing the statistic should ensure that he or she remains open minded and doesn’t unknowingly manipulate the statistic to favor one’s egotistic goals. Statistics play a strong role in broadcasting the way history is wanted to be perceived by people. Human intervention in statistics could blur the true essence of the truth of the era in question.
In order to portray to people that Hitler was a ruthless dictator, it is only natural that the worst affected race, the Jews would make him look like the worst person he could be shown as. Statistics could blur the truth in a similar manner. By saying over 20 million Jews were killed at German concentration camps, one would think that Hitler was the most ruthless leader of all time, as a matter of fact, they do think so. However, no one noticed the three point one million Vietnamese lives that were taken during the Vietnam War by America.
The negative role played by statistics in this case is rather clear cut. The historic statistics taught in schools in the largest colonizer, Great Britain, would not teach through statistics like; they mass murdered six million Sikh peaceful demonstrators in India. Instead they would talk about the roads they built in the country, 75% of which still exist today, hereby ignoring the fact that they treated the natives as slaves in their own homeland to get the work done(1).
In this case statistics only tell the partial truth because they tend to nurture the learner into making fallacies about the subject matter that the British colonization was undoubtedly the best thing that ever happened to the commonwealth nations and all their foreign activities were positive. Propaganda and past history with the subject matter should also be appreciated. For example, the British students would think their government was the best thing that could have ever happened to any colonized state yet it could have been otherwise.
People may state that even occurrences like the Vietnam war and then Sikh mass murder have their statistics inscribed in historical books, but the magnitude and propaganda propelling the partial truths is so much higher than that of the whole truth that this in my opinion defeats the purpose of having a statistic in the first place the fact that you as a reader may have not known this before the read serves as direct proof. I believe such statistics blur the truth to such an extent that they shouldn’t be paid heed to. Such scrutiny is also necessary in the judgment of statistical reliability.
So now the question of morality comes along, is it morally correct to blur statistics and hence not lie, but manipulate the truth in such a manner that it is looked at differently? I believe this relates to the impact it has on society. One may think that statistics used in advertisement campaigns may not entirely be true, but they do no harm, however, such encourage consumerism culture that is also reflected by behavior such as the over consumption of fast foods leading both to poor health and increased scarcity of resources.
Government intervention restricting manipulation of certain statistics should also be tolerated. In mathematics, one may think that statistics greatly help in model making and the simplification of overly complex scenarios, but even here, if the variables are not paid heed to, statistics may cause one to deviate from the truth. In history, although it helps observers get an estimate as to what must have happened, it is highly prone to human intervention. Therefore, I advocate for an alternative use if given a choice.
But If statistics have to be used, one should evaluate them with the tools mentioned in the paper. Citations: 1)www. NDTVindia. com “The roads built during the British colonial times are still functioning and yet the ones constructed newly in the NCR region are damaged. 75% of the roads still functioning in India were built during the colonial times. ” 2)www. google. com (readers digest or something…. not sure) “3. 1 million Vietnamese lives were taken during the Vietnam war. ”