There are many methods to persuade people to support your view of an issue and one of them is using reliable testimony made by a third party. Some of the ways to use testimony effectively include citing experts, authority figures, or using stats to clarify your point without any doubt left in the minds of your listeners. There is only one problem with any statement that claims to be an absolute truth which is the fact that it is often unreliable, especially if it comes from an eyewitness. There are many dissertation papers written on this subject that emphasize the issue of eyewitness unreliability and how to improve it via deduction or using other specific gpa methods or even VR therapies. Several prominent faculte research team members across the globe have identified many areas where progress can be made toward lifting that fog out of any blurry witness account.
Since Sigmund Freud made psychology PhD degree respectable in our worldwide academic community, terms like suppression, anxiety issues, or subconscious emotions become widely known. We are usually not aware of how sensations of fear or arousal affect our judgment as often cited by experts in these fields (e.g. Salimpoor, Benovoy, Longo, Cooperstock & Zatorre, 2009, The rewarding aspects of music listening related to the degree of emotional arousal). Stress or a bad mood can make us paranoid when we shouldn’t be, see threats where there aren’t any, or even disregard real danger as a harmless inconvenience. Each student who was ever writing an essay one night before his exam knows the meaning behind the word dread, paranoia, and hysteria. Even our positive emotions can blur our perception and trick us into seeing things that aren’t there, so getting a reliable testimony is much harder than you think.
Criminal lawyers or judges know this as well as any law school graduate on campus looking toward his diploma and a successful career in Justice Department. They are the ones who must ask is eyewitness testimony reliable and divide true facts from a bunch of nonsense. The most resourceful ones will find references for an eyewitness testimony essay and start learning about how stress can play an important part in shaping our sensory perception (Lazarus & Folkman, 1986, Dynamics of stress). Despite some Essays on Eyewitness Testimony can be very helpful, it is imperative that we raise awareness about emotional biases so we can deal with this issue better in the future.
It seems like our perception of time is just an illusion and memory might be the biggest one of all time-related misconceptions. When that bond between memory and eyewitness testimony is broken, no account can be verified with certainty, and that bond breaks very fast as time goes by. Only when our memory is fresh and bright, we might get a chance to hear an objective eyewitness account, but otherwise, it gets contaminated by other’s accounts, TV or media influence, or even social expectations. There is a good lesson to be learned here which is that memories change as we do, so our memory library produces one new book each day, just like a writer that changes his perspectives as he grows as a person. Avoiding this bias means that witness accounts should be taken as soon as possible before our brain has a chance to write new memories on top of the old ones.
One great teacher once said that we can break an atom with ease but not the prejudices that shape our daily lives. We can tutor people about the best course of action when dealing with other humans, but we cannot escape our petty intolerances or misconceptions. These little nuisances shape how we witness other people, and how we judge their actions or reasoning. Answering why is eyewitness testimony important comes down to not blaming the wrong person under any circumstances based on our racial or ethnic prejudices. There is a lot of coursework to be done in this area and it comes down to battling discrimination, bigotry, and intolerance everywhere we manage to detect it.
The main problems with eye witness testimony remain excluding emotional or prejudicial components out of someone’s reasoning as these biases can blur any judgment. Fear, anxiety, past memories, or references that we take for granted, including our subjective grade of experienced reality can make us every jury’s nightmare witness. Some more research and education are needed for the general public to become conscious of the fragility of our visual experience in highly stressful situations. There is no college or a university class that will make you a better spectator or a bystander but reading essay papers or publications made by experts on this matter might be an eye-opening experience. Until the eyewitness testimony psychology becomes a mainstream subject, keep your eyes wide open and use the term reliable eyewitness carefully.