Judgment

Judgment or judgement implies a balanced weighing up of evidence preparatory to making a decision. A formal process of evaluation applies. A judgement is expressed as a statement, e.g. S1: 'A is B' and is usually the outcome of an evaluation of alternatives. For example:

  • there must be corroborating evidence for S1,
  • there must be no true contradicting statements,
  • if there are contradicting statements, these must be outweighed by the corroborating evidence for S1, or
  • contradicting statements must themseves have no corroborating evidence
  • S1 must also corroborate and be corroborated by the system of statemetns which are accepted as true.

So, we can judge that "It is raining" if there are raindrops hitting the window, if people outside are using umbrellas, and if there are clouds in the sky. Someone who says that despite all this, it is not raining, but cannot provide evidence for this, does not undermine our judgement.

However, if they demonstrated that there was a sophisticated projection and audio sytem to produce the illusion of our evidence, then we would probably reconsider our judgement. However, we would not do this lightly, we would demand evidence of the existence of such a system. Then it would need to be decided again upon available new evidence whether or not it was raining.

So a judgement must be supported by, and support, known facts which are themselves well supported, and its negation must be shown to be unfounded, before it is accepted as well founded.

Contrast choice.


Judgment is also the formal decree of a court pronouncing a sentence , imposing a legal liability, issuing an injunction, or finally and conclusively denying them.



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