June 10th, 2020
Do you want to know why some folks love statistics so much?
It’s because numbers are not people.
Tell me which is easier for you: is it more agreeable to look up printed percentages that meet up with what you want to think and believe, or to watch even eight minutes of a man being murdered right before your eyes?
Which is easier: to present numbers in a way someone wants them to look, or to fabricate hundreds of years of documented human behavior?
Which is easier: to put people into large groups that make ideas like genocide and racial discrimination easier to digest, or to think about each precious, literally one-of-a-kind existence being extinguished one light at a time?
Do you see where I’m going here?
Math is awesome. Science is wonderful, and it posits that the world we know around us is made up of math.
But we, the people, are not made up of math.
We are made up of laughs, and tears, and jokes, and inside stories; we’re made up of families, our parents, our children and the bonds we make outside our blood; we’re made up of our favorite foods, our vices, our sins and all of the great things that we can do.
We’re people. All of us.
And when you deny that — when you use a chart or a graph to defend the degradation or loss of any human life — you lose. You lose sight of what’s important, you lose sight of what’s valuable — you lose sight of what’s real. It might be something that’s learned, or something you forgot, but you can always come back.
And when you come back, and you see the worth of each individual, no matter how difficult it may be?
That’s when we win.