New York Personal Injury Law Blog » Bill Cosby, Confirmation Bias, Evidence


December 30th, 2015

Let the #BillCosby War Begin!

BillCosbyI don’t even have to look at Twitter to know what is happening given the announcement that Bill Cosby has been charged with aggravated indecent assault based on a 2004 incident.

On one side, those that defend him. On the other, those that want to flay him.

And they both share this is common: They have formed their opinions before any evidence has been introduced in a courtroom and before any juror has been able to evaluate any piece of evidence.

Nor will it matter to those staking out their ground. ‘Tis a magnificent piece of confirmation bias being played out now.

Confirmation Bias

Few will be likely to change their minds once evidence is actually introduced. Because everyone will want to be “right” and will seek out that which supports their own first impressions.

The public discussion and trial will follow the same course that white “subway vigilante” Bernhard Goetz did when he shot down four black teenagers in a subway in 1984. Protesters filled the streets outside the courthouse, some claiming he was a racist and others saying it was self-defense, with the protesters sharing one thing in common: None were in the courtroom listening to the evidence.

And it will follow the same track as the George Zimmerman trial, who shot and killed Trayvon Martin in 2012. First form an opinion based on your gut, the look for evidence to support that opinion.

Confirmation bias is in the air again. Can you smell it?


6 thoughts on “Let the #BillCosby War Begin!

  1. Cosby seems to have left a trail of creepy, but I find it much more interesting (not to say ire-inducing) to follow the “affluenza” debacle. One may speculate about corruption in the Texas judiciary, slapping AffluenzaBoy on the wrist for a 4-death DUI, but there’s not much doubt in my mind that a Mexican judge can be bought, and the first hint is today when AffluenzaBoy stayed behind whilst ReviledAffluenzaMom came home in cuffs.

    Maybe they put AffluenzaBoy away in DrugCartelKing’s very permeable accommodations. That would be worth a few quid, methinks.

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  4. The latest wrinkle is that since his wife is also his business manager she can be called to testify. One assumes that the questioning can only be about his business affairs (tee hee), but a deft interrogator might be able to skirt (tee hee) the boundaries between wife and business manager to get some damning stuff. Will be fun to see.