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Old January 15, 2009, 02:17 AM   #73
Join Date: February 12, 2001
Location: DFW Area
Posts: 18,152
I think reading an academic study about crime and using the statistics within to formulate an action plan of self defense without understanding what the statistics mean and their context and bias might cause you to formulate a bad plan.
My alternative? Training by experienced people supplemented by some reading on the subject (not an academic study). Some advice I see on these forum (some) is more useful to me than reading Gary Kleck's works.
Given that a lack of understanding of the data collection method and the context & bias seem to be your objections, how would one be better served by your solution?

I believe people have as much or more confusion about how to interpret a single person's experiences/anecdotes (experience as a data collection method) than they do about statistics. In fact, to some extent they go hand in hand. Similarly, determining the context & bias of a trainer or a person posting on the internet would seem to be just as difficult (if not more so) than determining the same for an academic researcher.

I agree that a person needs a basic understanding of the data collection method, and also needs to consider context and bias, I just don't see how that argues more strongly against statistical data provided via academic study than it does against experiential (anecdotal) data provided via word of mouth/internet.
The real dange, IMO, is developing plans based on incorrect perceptions, bad data, and so on.
I believe that this is what it comes down to regardless of one's sources.
Did you know that there is a TEXAS State Rifle Association?
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