Does It Exist?
Objectivity is a subject’s delusion that observing can be done without him, Heinz von Forester.
By definition objectivity is the quality or character of being objective: lack of favoritism toward one side or another; freedom from bias. Subjective is: based on or influenced by personal feelings, tastes, or opinions. Subjectivity is the quality of existing in someone’s mind rather than the external world.
According to quantum mechanics there is no such thing as objectivity. We cannot eliminate ourselves from the picture. We are part of nature, and when we study nature there is no way around the fact that nature is studying itself, Gary Zukav.
It seems we could say that we are subjective humans, not objective. One hundred and one cognitive biases have been identified, which interfere with our objectivity. This is important for each one of us to acknowledge. Personal feelings, tastes, or opinions, of course, are always with us. The problem is, these subjective feelings are usually not part of our awareness.
When we say, “Beliefs Are Us”, we are saying we are what we believe. Beliefs become behavior. If objectivity is freedom from bias, then we are probably not often objective. This has been the theme pf much of my writing. And yet I believe it needs to continue to be said.
Because of the political events in America today, about the subjectivity of the justice system, I can’t resist discussing the recent nomination of a Supreme Court justice. I don’t think anyone believes that the justices of the Supreme Court are objective. Because we all know how important it is who appoints them, a republican or a democratic president. “Blind Justice” is an illusion. Justice is in the eye of the beholder.
Objectivity is not expected from the Supreme Court; or from any court. We constantly identify conservative and liberal judges. How can a conservative judge or a liberal judge be objective?
To me this is amazing. How do we expect justice in America be achieved, if judges are conservative or liberal? A judge is what he or she believes. We have grown accustomed to subjectivity and bias in our justice system. And in politics today.
We humans are what we believe; we have to get used to the fact that all of us, republicans, democrats, judges, presidents, police, enemies, friends, relatives, etc. etc. are not objective. Over 100 cognitive biases have been identified. A cognitive bias is a systematic error in thinking that impacts one’s choices and judgments. These biases influence our perception of the world and can lead us to poor decision-making. We all have them, including politicians, judges, relatives, neighbors, you and me. The hard part will be to include ourselves in this list. Because: Objectivity, freedom from belief bias, is a subject’s delusion of humans.
What we believe is the most powerful option of all, Norman Cousins.