It is so easy to come to a logical conclusion based on a series of facts and your own experience. Sometimes the conclusion is correct, sometimes not.
My mother told me a story of how she had come to a quick conclusion while on jury duty and then eventually changed her mind. The defendant, a client of a social service organization, had been arrested for burglary on the premises of his social worker. He had a bagful of items in his hand.
Sounds cut and dry, doesn’t it? That’s what the police thought and made a quick arrest. By the end of the trial, the bizarre story became clear. Social Worker had become enamored of this particular client and invited him to stay in her house. This arrangement worked well for some months until she tired of his company and asked him to leave. He returned to get his few possessions and she called the police. Social Worker was in far greater need of counseling than her client was. I don’t know what happened to Client, other than being acquitted. I have a feeling that social service organizations no longer played a significant part in his life.
For a more personal story, let’s go back in history to when I was called to the office of the principal of my kindergarten child’s school. They were concerned that there might be an issue of abuse or some violence occurring in the home. I was polite and cooperative because I know that these folks are often on the front lines of protecting children. Why were they worried? They had known our family for about eight years.
Now go back another five years. Big sisters wanted to go shopping to buy a gift for their new brother/sister-to-be. At Woolworths, they picked out a small brown Teddy bear with a noisemaker in its belly. Teddy squealed with delight when hugged.
Come forward those five years and you would see that the gift recipient always had this Teddy with her, including at school. Teddy was showing significant wear. He had been sewn-up a few times and his squealer hardly worked anymore. My sweet kindergarten child discovered that if she “punched” Teddy in the belly, he would squeak. That is what she was doing in class the day that her teacher thought she was having anger issues. Teacher did not ask “why;” she went to the school counselor with her suspicions, who in turn went to the principal who called me. Everything was eventually resolved. Neither my kindergartener nor I ever forgot this incident. In fact, she just mentioned it very recently and told me it would make an excellent blog.
Most of us have been unjustly accused of something at one time. Most of us have also come to the wrong conclusion about something that seemed obvious on the surface.
We’re just human.