# Forum

#### Half of all policemen are thieves and half of all policemen are murderers. Does it follow logically that all policemen are criminals?

metalust

May 14, 2008 3:11pm

Is this a logic question or a question involving opinion of law enforcement?

Sam290

May 14, 2008 3:20pm

I think it's a logic question -> "Does it follow logically".  If that's the case though it really sucks.

Thogar

May 14, 2008 3:21pm

It specifies "logically".

Either way, the answer's no.

XenonBaboon

May 14, 2008 3:41pm

What if some policemen are thieves AND murderers?  Nothing in the wording of the question precludes this.  That creates the potential for a statistical overlap, and allows for the possibility that there could be some non-criminals among them.  So I will have to say no.

Awesomatic

May 14, 2008 3:44pm

A better question would be "half of all policemen are thieves and half of all policemen are not thieves. does it follow logically that all policemen are thieves or not thieves?"

• Yes
• Yes, but that's axiomatic
DarthJesse

May 14, 2008 4:58pm

What if some policemen are thieves AND murderers?

Unless the half that are thieves aren't the murders, then some have to be both.  If the one half that are thieves are not murders, then the answer is yes.  Otherwise, the answer is no.

AshleighAnne

May 14, 2008 9:17pm

nope.

next question.

BMWHRD2

May 15, 2008 5:13am

Although the premise is true, it doesn't follow from the set conditions.

No.

mansardroof

May 15, 2008 5:16am

Yeah. It makes total sense. If Lewis Carroll was your logic teacher.

JMStarling

May 15, 2008 6:03am

It logically follows that some of the thieves are also murderers and vice versa, so it doens't logically follow that all are criminals.  And I say that with no great love for the police, who have been unable to help me when I needed it, but willing to lie about me to get their traffic court quota.

Thogar

May 15, 2008 6:14am

It logically follows that some of the thieves are also murderers and vice versa,

Not  necessarily.  It's very likely that some are, but it's impossible to say yes with certainty.

Dunlendor

May 15, 2008 6:25am

Criminals in positions of authority are more dangerous than normal criminals, both to individuals and society as a whole. Since some policemen are criminal and all policemen are in positions of authority, you are better off treating all policemen as criminals.

BMWHRD2

May 15, 2008 6:35am

"Since some policemen are criminal and all policemen are in positions of authority, you are better off treating all policemen as criminals."

Do you suggest shooting first?

Thogar

May 15, 2008 6:44am

Tarring everyone with the same brush isn't a reasonable way to go about things.  I don't treat all women as insane bunny boilers just because some are, or treat all teenagers as violent thugs just because some are.  Sure, be wary around the police if you feel the need, but treating them all as criminals untli proven otherwise?  Isn't that also known as 'guilty until proven innocent'?  What if they decided to treat civilians in the same way?

BaDDoLL

May 15, 2008 7:03am

One door leads to the castle at the center of the labyrinth, the other leads to certain death..

BMWHRD2

May 15, 2008 7:05am

The hole in your logic is that people don't choose to become female or teenagers.  People make a conscious choice to become a cop, or a murderer, or a lawyer.  Or teach, barber, candle stick maker.

And each profession attracts a select type of person.

Treat the police as if they were criminals from the start.  Your odds are VERY good.

Thogar

May 15, 2008 7:25am

The hole in your logic is that people don't choose to become female or teenagers.  People make a conscious choice to become a cop, or a murderer, or a lawyer.  Or teach, barber, candle stick maker.

Good point.

Treat the police as if they were criminals from the start.  Your odds are VERY good.

The handful of police I worked (loosely) with in london were far from crooked.  I'd imagine it varies wildly from city to city, let alone between countries.  'sides, I don't believe in tarring everyone with the same brush, it's unfair.

BMWHRD2

May 15, 2008 7:41am

I'm sure there is the odd kind-hearted assassin out there, but on the whole, when you kill for cash you are not a good person.  I'll continue to paint people with a wide brush depending on what choices in life they make.  And their choices in friends.

As for good cops, I'm sure they exist. and the 99% of the cops who go into the job dreaming about beating people up, or being above the law, or because they wish to cover for their crimes give that 1% a bad name.  I'm sure the cops you have dealt with have been charming.  I am also sure that criminals do not exactly announce their intentions to one of their potential victims.  Instead they charm them, and put them at ease.

StarManta

May 15, 2008 9:22am

You need to escape from the labyrinth, and there are three doors with three guards. one always tells the truth, one always lies, and one stabs escaping logicians who ask tricky questions.

Thogar

May 15, 2008 9:25am

By that token, everyone I meet is a criminal and I'd better assume they're going to cheat, rob and kill me until they prove otherwise.