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    Jsab11's Avatar
    Jsab11 Posts: 8, Reputation: 1
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    #1

    Mar 16, 2015, 11:15 PM
    Does this sentence read well?
    I've received different comments on the grammar and style issue of this sentence. Some say the grammar is good as it is, while some say it needs revision. Do you think it's good the way it is?

    "While scientists can use the scientific method and mathematics to re-evaluate their calculations should they find their conclusions somewhat doubtful, qualitative scholars like lawyers can only rely on their unstructured and abstract interpretation of facts."
    catonsville's Avatar
    catonsville Posts: 894, Reputation: 91
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    #2

    Mar 17, 2015, 04:13 PM
    "Scientists can use scientific methods and mathematics to evaluate and re-evaluate their calculations, if their conclusions are somewhat doubtful, whereas qualitative scholars like lawyers can only rely on their unstructured and abstract interpretation of facts."

    Just my take, right or left.
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 37,760, Reputation: 5426
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    #3

    Mar 17, 2015, 04:14 PM
    "Only" is in the wrong place.
    Jsab11's Avatar
    Jsab11 Posts: 8, Reputation: 1
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    #4

    Mar 17, 2015, 09:39 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Wondergirl View Post
    "Only" is in the wrong place.

    Thanks! But how about the rest of the sentence? Does it need to be rewritten?
    talaniman's Avatar
    talaniman Posts: 53,879, Reputation: 10852
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    #5

    Mar 18, 2015, 04:18 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by catonsville View Post
    "Scientists can use scientific methods and mathematics to evaluate and re-evaluate their calculations, if their conclusions are somewhat doubtful, whereas qualitative scholars like lawyers can only rely on their unstructured and abstract interpretation of facts."

    Just my take, right or left.
    ...lawyers can rely only on their unstructured and abstract interpretation of facts

    Eliminating the, as catonsville did, and moving only and you are good to go.
    joypulv's Avatar
    joypulv Posts: 21,593, Reputation: 2941
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    #6

    Mar 18, 2015, 05:39 AM
    I don't like any of it. Qualitative scholars? What the heck is that? Lawyers rely very heavily on forensic science in many types of cases. In addition to being forced to rely on the constraints of law. Some lawyers ARE scientists with law degrees.

    It's a broad, sweeping, generalization. Compare fields if you want, but don't draw that conclusion, unless you qualify a lot of it.

    I know you only asked if it reads well. I don't care. What good does 'read well' do if the content is baseless?
    catonsville's Avatar
    catonsville Posts: 894, Reputation: 91
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    #7

    Mar 18, 2015, 02:13 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by joypulv View Post
    I don't like any of it. Qualitative scholars? What the heck is that? Lawyers rely very heavily on forensic science in many types of cases. In addition to being forced to rely on the constraints of law. Some lawyers ARE scientists with law degrees.

    It's a broad, sweeping, generalization. Compare fields if you want, but don't draw that conclusion, unless you qualify a lot of it.

    I know you only asked if it reads well. I don't care. What good does 'read well' do if the content is baseless?
    I don't think the OP requested an evaluation of the accuracy. So, Joy lets have your rendition of how it should look ;)
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    joypulv Posts: 21,593, Reputation: 2941
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    #8

    Mar 18, 2015, 02:23 PM
    I KNOW the OP didn't request an evaluation of the accuracy. I said as much!

    It should be several paragraphs, not one conclusive sentence. I'm not going to write them.

    To me this is a classic case of 'looking good' words that have a shoddy premise. It's also a premise that sucks you in by starting with good old scientific method and how wonderful it is, followed by assumptions about lawyers that you 'believe' just because it includes a big word or two. Religious scholars maybe, or literary scholars... but even then I just don't like lumping groups into one vast argument like this. Sort of like saying White Men Can't Jump, or Women Never Forget, or the harsh winter the NE US just had is proof of something about climate change.
    catonsville's Avatar
    catonsville Posts: 894, Reputation: 91
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    #9

    Mar 18, 2015, 02:46 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by joypulv View Post
    I KNOW the OP didn't request an evaluation of the accuracy. I said as much!

    It should be several paragraphs, not one conclusive sentence. I'm not going to write them.

    To me this is a classic case of 'looking good' words that have a shoddy premise. It's also a premise that sucks you in by starting with good old scientific method and how wonderful it is, followed by assumptions about lawyers that you 'believe' just because it includes a big word or two. Religious scholars maybe, or literary scholars... but even then I just don't like lumping groups into one vast argument like this. Sort of like saying White Men Can't Jump, or Women Never Forget, or the harsh winter the NE US just had is proof of something about climate change.
    I like your choice of subjects to do a "Sort of like thingie" They are both true so what is wrong with saying it. LOL Just having a little fun. Maybe I should have used "I KNOW" at the start of my rant.
    tickle's Avatar
    tickle Posts: 23,801, Reputation: 2674
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    #10

    Mar 18, 2015, 05:38 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by joypulv View Post
    I don't like any of it. Qualitative scholars? What the heck is that? Lawyers rely very heavily on forensic science in many types of cases. In addition to being forced to rely on the constraints of law. Some lawyers ARE scientists with law degrees.

    It's a broad, sweeping, generalization. Compare fields if you want, but don't draw that conclusion, unless you qualify a lot of it.

    I know you only asked if it reads well. I don't care. What good does 'read well' do if the content is baseless?
    I don't know why scientists would bother with law degrees. What purpose would it serve?
    tickle's Avatar
    tickle Posts: 23,801, Reputation: 2674
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    #11

    Mar 18, 2015, 05:46 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Jsab11 View Post
    I've received different comments on the grammar and style issue of this sentence. Some say the grammar is good as it is, while some say it needs revision. Do you think it's good the way it is?

    "While scientists can use the scientific method and mathematics to re-evaluate their calculations should they find their conclusions somewhat doubtful, qualitative scholars like lawyers can only rely on their unstructured and abstract interpretation of facts."
    You cannot use the word 'qualitative' to describe a person as in scholar or lawyer. Best to leave it out it does not explain or serve a purpose.
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    Alty Posts: 28,318, Reputation: 5972
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    #12

    Mar 18, 2015, 05:54 PM
    I agree with Joy, and I'm sure she's just as shocked as I am.

    To make it a "good" sentence only requires the modifications suggested. That doesn't make it an accurate sentence, and to me accuracy is important. Do not state things you can't prove, that, to me, is a lie, and not a good sentence.

    Too many people post things as fact without studying what the facts actually are. That, to me, is wrong. Write sentences, write paragraphs, write articles, write books, but be accurate, do your research, and not online!

    Don't just write for the sake of writing a good sentence. If you're writing about something that can impact others, be accurate!
    Jsab11's Avatar
    Jsab11 Posts: 8, Reputation: 1
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    #13

    Mar 18, 2015, 08:19 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by joypulv View Post
    I don't like any of it. Qualitative scholars? What the heck is that? Lawyers rely very heavily on forensic science in many types of cases. In addition to being forced to rely on the constraints of law. Some lawyers ARE scientists with law degrees.It's a broad, sweeping, generalization. Compare fields if you want, but don't draw that conclusion, unless you qualify a lot of it.I know you only asked if it reads well. I don't care. What good does 'read well' do if the content is baseless?
    Thank you for your insight, joypluv! Although I wasn't asking for an evaluation of the content, your suggestion is duly noted. However, I disagree with your ideas. I wasn't trying to make a sweeping generalization. Instead, I was referring to legal scholars or the academics who do not handle criminal cases like lawyers. The problem is, I didn't use the specific term.

    In addition, your statement that forensic science is useful in many cases is baseless, considering that a lot of legal topics, even in criminal law, do not require it. While the natural sciences are important in solving some criminal cases, such as rape and homicide, it is almost useless in the "hermeneutical" or qualitative fields of law like legal philosophy and constitutional law. I was referring to these fields, but I didn't specify it in my post because I was only asking for a grammar critique.

    BTW, I used the word "some" because a growing number of cases are solved through “out court of court settlements” or plea-bargaining agreements. This makes rhetoric and honesty far more useful and less expensive than a full-scale forensic investigation.
    joypulv's Avatar
    joypulv Posts: 21,593, Reputation: 2941
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    #14

    Mar 19, 2015, 03:10 AM
    Nothing at all wrong with saying 'many.' I didn't say most. Just because 'many' legal cases don't use forensics doesn't negate the fact that many do!
    Besides, even 'a few' is enough to bother me about your statement.

    You say you weren't TRYING to make a sweeping generalization. I read it and read it and it still reads like one to me. You tell us now that you were 'referring to legal scholars' and not any lawyers who handle criminal cases? But you didn't say that. By the time you qualify your statement, it's premise is going to sound cumbersome and long and watered down. That's why I think you should throw it all out and start over.

    You are good with words. Be careful about being swept away with their sound.
    Jsab11's Avatar
    Jsab11 Posts: 8, Reputation: 1
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    #15

    Mar 19, 2015, 04:29 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by joypulv View Post
    Nothing at all wrong with saying 'many.' I didn't say most. Just because 'many' legal cases don't use forensics doesn't negate the fact that many do!
    Besides, even 'a few' is enough to bother me about your statement.

    You say you weren't TRYING to make a sweeping generalization. I read it and read it and it still reads like one to me. You tell us now that you were 'referring to legal scholars' and not any lawyers who handle criminal cases? But you didn't say that. By the time you qualify your statement, it's premise is going to sound cumbersome and long and watered down. That's why I think you should throw it all out and start over.

    You are good with words. Be careful about being swept away with their sound.
    Thanks! Yes, as I said earlier, I failed to use the right term. A more specific term could have avoided this confusion. Anyway, I do agree that forensic investigation is indispensable in some cases. I do not dispute that. What I don't agree with is your statement that somehow exaggerates the importance of forensics, let alone the natural sciences, in the study of law. Science can help lawyers, but only to a limited extent.
    joypulv's Avatar
    joypulv Posts: 21,593, Reputation: 2941
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    #16

    Mar 19, 2015, 04:50 AM
    I'm not here to exaggerate the importance of anything. I'm critiquing what I feel is a faulty premise of a very weighty subject that you are working on.
    The issue for me is ONLY whether or not your sentence is a good one.
    Deflecting isn't going to help you.
    If I'm annoying you by concerning myself about the content of your statement, say so, and I'll stop.
    talaniman's Avatar
    talaniman Posts: 53,879, Reputation: 10852
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    #17

    Mar 19, 2015, 05:12 AM
    No doubt you are seeing your broad statement, and subsequent argument to support them picked apart as more scrutiny is brought to them. The flaw in your premise statement is the unstructured reference to lawyers and comparing them to scientist.

    It's apple and oranges, as settled science and settled law while both subjective to new data changing them, are always open to different interpretations, depending on how well you argue and prove that interpretation, or DISPROVE it as it were.

    That's how this simple grammatical critique turns into a debate, because of looking at it with different eyes, different thinking.
    Jsab11's Avatar
    Jsab11 Posts: 8, Reputation: 1
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    #18

    Mar 19, 2015, 03:45 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by joypulv View Post
    I'm not here to exaggerate the importance of anything. I'm critiquing what I feel is a faulty premise of a very weighty subject that you are working on.
    The issue for me is ONLY whether or not your sentence is a good one.
    Deflecting isn't going to help you.
    If I'm annoying you by concerning myself about the content of your statement, say so, and I'll stop.
    No, not at all. In fact, your critique has given me helpful perspective on this issue. I had given much focus on the grammar when there are other important issues that are worth my attention.

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