False stereotypes can be the result of too little experience, such as little real-life contact with people of other races. They can be the result of too much inaccurate experience, as when you've seen something a thousand times on TV or in movies, but that's not how it works in real life. But no matter how inaccurate or limited your experience is, it is nevertheless what your brain knows to be true. And you cannot correct it just by reading or hearing about the truth. It has to be experienced to change your brain's connections and expectations.
Hey all! I haven’t forgotten you, I’m still around. I’m doing a murder trial right now, and the comic just has to wait until it’s over. [Update 6/27/2015: Yup, trial’s still going. Sorry.] [Update 12:01 a.m. 6/30/2015 Well, no, I’m not actually sorry, but I do kinda feel bad that y’all have to wait a bit longer. And you do. Because… y’know… work. BUT everything’s totally scripted through the end of the chapter. It’s just a matter of drawing it. Or rewriting it. No! I didn’t say that. Just drawing. that’s all. I’d better go to bed. Gotta be in court in the A.M.] [Final Update: Trial’s over, just in time to get back to this over the Independence Day weekend!]

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There are now 28 comments... what are your thoughts?
  1. Nope, just waiting for the information about the law to resume…

    • “Law?” What is this “law” of which you speak?

      (Seriously, though, this area of the law is less about constitutional rights and more about procedures designed to minimize a problem. And the problem’s one that most people have a hard time believing even exists. So first I figured I ought to explain what the problem is thoroughly enough to bust through some of the disbelief, while at the same time not going into too much technical detail. Which is a shame, in retrospect, because I haven’t had much free time this year to get it over with. Never fear: the procedures and law are not far away.)

      • Perhaps you should change the banner at the top to read “The Illustrated Guide to Law & Psychology”.

        • Ha! But nah, we’re almost done with this stuff. Just like the self-incrimination chapter had to start out with a buncha history before we got to the law stuff.

          • Fun times. I’m actually enjoying the mind stuff. Much of it I had no idea about or was vaguely aware of or pretended I knew so as to appear more awesome.

      • Given what you know of psychology, do you think your efforts to educate regarding the problem will have any effect on changing peoples’ beliefs?

        • I don’t have any illusions about my ability to change how people think.

          But that said… I have noticed that the piece on entrapment has become almost a de rigueur link when people bring up the subject online. And when people give examples of overcriminalization lately it’s less about Gibson Guitars now and more about bird feathers — an example I chose specifically because nobody had really used it yet. So some bits of this comic have spread out into the general consciousness at least a tiny bit, online anyway.

          So who knows? Maybe some people will see this and think more critically next time they’re dealing with an eyewitness? Maybe a future police officer will be a little more careful with an ID procedure? I’d like that.

      • Yeah, with more frequent updates I don’t think people would mind so much. It feels like we’ve been on this topic for a really long time because we have – it started in October. But that’s mostly because, counting from just after the Fifth Amendment Flowchart, TIGtL has averaged a little less than one update a week. That will make any webcomic feel slow. If the current chapter had started when it did and updated, say, three times a week, we’d have reached this point around the third week of January, I think.

  2. Raen says

    Panel 2: The Internet in a nutshell.

  3. Tim says

    Delaying the comic for a *murder trial*? C’mon, man, have a sense of priorities!

  4. SPACKlick says

    I have this wonderful feeling that as the trials drag on the story of the “sorry for the delay” notes will be a searing tale of one lawyers descent into madness and redemption, maybe with some hot gypsies thrown in.

    • That’d be pretty funny, SPACKlick. Sadly, I don’t have time for madness. Maybe gypsies, ha!

      [UPDATE: Trial’s still going, but everything’s on schedule. Can’t complain. I’ll get back to this soon enough.]

      [UPDATE: Ditto today. Keep the faith.]

      [UPDATE: You know, I thought this would have been over by now. Screw it – I’ll spend some time on the comic tonight. Just a little. Just to keep it fresh in my mind.]

      [UPDATE: I didn’t get much sleep last night, but it was so worth it. Good to feel the words and pictures flowing again. They’ll have to wait some more, though. Too much to do for court.]

      [UPDATE: I lied. Couldn’t wait. Comic called last night, and I answered. Bad lawyer! No coffee!]

      [UPDATE: Christ. Today the judge actually stopped things to ask if I was paying attention. Apparently there’d been a question. Fortunately I had the wit to give an answer, because truth be told I’d been rewriting that stupid page in my legal pad. For the nineteenth time. I think I covered pretty well, but oh god how am I going to make that page make sense when I never said that other stuff ten pages ago when I should have and it’s too late to bring it up now. Stress.]

      [UPDATE: Tonight the wife kept pestering me to come to bed. Yeah right. She only means to sleep. I don’t get why I have to be there sleeping at the same time. Doesn’t she see I’m working?]

      [UPDATE: So sleepy. I swear I saw Lady Justice and The State gossiping in front of the courthouse today. But of course it’s just the statues. Statues hardly ever gossip, ha!]

      [UPDATE: So tonight she was all “come to bed, and I don’t mean just to sleep” but then of course she turned it into a rant and was all “jeezus when was the last time you slept through the night” and “you’re killing me here” like SHE is the one suffering. I didn’t even reply right away because 1) Rude. And 2) I had to get this freaking line art just the right kind of sloppy. And of course as soon as I turn around to answer she’s gone. Well, I guess whatever it was couldn’t have been THAT important, amirite?]

      [UPDATE: Hey, sorry the delay is just going on and on. Trial kinda sucks up your whole day, 24-7, except for sleeping. Though I’m giving up just a tiny bit of that sleep to work on the comic so you don’t have to wait for-freaking-ever! ‘Cause I love you guys. You guys are the best.]

      [UPDATE: Was looking for cheese tonight. Don’t know why, just craved cheese for some reason. Couldn’t find it in the fridge. Called out to She Who Must Be Obeyed to ask where she’d “hidden” it (ha!) but no answer. Guess she’s out with the girls. Actually haven’t seen too much of her lately. Nice of her to let me work, though.]

      [UPDATE: I must say this trial is going really well so far, but you’d think the government would have run out of witnesses by now! How many people even LIVE in that neighborhood? Oh well, back to the grind tomorrow. And I really shouldn’t comment like that on an ongoing case. Forget I said it, okay?]

      [UPDATE: It’s probably nothing? But late last night I felt a, you know, *presence* in the room with me. Kind of like someone was looking over my shoulder at my drawings. And judging me. No, seriously, I was kinda creeped out.]

      [UPDATE: Had to go to the store after court today. All out of coffee. Too bad they don’t sell it in I.V. bags! Ha ha ha ha ha!!!]

      [UPDATE: It happened again. I felt the presence. So I spun around in my chair real fast, and there was nothing there. Except there was. I could have sworn I saw, just for a moment, a little gnarled old lady watching me in the dark from the far corner of the room. I might not have been getting enough sleep lately (ANYTHING for you guys!) so it could have been one of those “microsleep” waking dreams you hear about truckers getting, where they *had* to swerve on that deserted highway in Utah because of the dragon in the middle of the road. Though my money’s on the dragon being real. But not this old lady. She was just a figment, for a fraction of a second, and then she was gone. Just my imagination. But you truckers out there, you watch out for those dragons, okay?]

      [UPDATE: It’s been a few days since I checked in, just wanted to let you know the trial is STILL going on. The court reporter even said it’s starting to seem surreal to him. Nobody remembers a case going on this long. The prosecutor doesn’t even acknowledge us, just keeps plugging away, calling witness after witness. I’m tempted to not even cross-examine the next one, just to kinda move things along.]

      [UPDATE: Spoke to her last night. I’d been building up the courage for a couple of nights. Just lost it and demanded that she tell me what she wants! The old lady spoke back!!! Her voice was like honey that’s crystallized and cracked with disuse. She wanted to tell me the future, what my jury was going to do, warning me about a strategy I’ve been contemplating. But I shut her right up. Tell me what’s going to happen next in the comic, I demanded! But the evil thing just vanished in disgust. That’s okay. The characters talk to me now. I bet if I’m nice to them, they’ll clue me in on what they’re planning to do. Maybe I’ll draw Pi that pony she wanted as a little girl…]

      [UPDATE: Today the judge made a REALLY inappropriate comment about hygiene, looking right at my table. As if *I* have any say over whether the jail let my client shower before coming to court. Ugh. The old lady was back again last night. First she just looked at me, like she was considering something. Her big hoop earrings lay awkwardly against this big scarf she wears around her hair. Then she changed. Kind of filtered into a much younger her. Now she looked maybe sixteen. Same earrings, but now her hair was free and long and wild. She danced barefoot, though there was no music, in ruffled skirts that billowed about her like an ancient sea creature. Then she put a finger to her eye and dissolved into nothing. I had been wondering when she’d finally leave. I have a COMIC to write, you know?]

      [UPDATE: So I spat coffee all over the morning paper. Did you see it, too? They said my trial had ended over a month ago, for reasons they didn’t disclose, and it was being – get this – RE-tried in a couple of weeks. These reporters never get anything right. If they’d bothered to, you know, actually come to COURT they’d have seen we’re still slogging away. Idiots.]

      [UPDATE: Last night when I was talking to the characters, the narrator guy (what the hell is his name, anyway?) opened up a door I must have drawn, and invited me in. That was really nice of him, but I had to say no. Too busy!]

      [UPDATE: You know what? If they invite me in tonight? I’ll say yes. I’ll go.]

      [UPDATE: I hope they have coffee!]

      • “Yeah, it used to be a nice little comic about the law, but somewhere around witness identification, it took a bizarre shift into surrealist horror. Still very educational, though”

  5. SPACKlick says

    Yay! Hope the trial went Well/Acceptably/Not Disastrously [delete as appropriate] and glad to see you didn’t go mad.

  6. Ann Onymous says

    So her brother stays awake for her long lecture about history but she won’t stay awake for his long lecture on biology? RUDE!
    Oh well, they both love the law, so they have that in common!
    Also, I love that they have different topics of expertise! It develops their personalities. Also, if they really *are* kids (or at least a teenager in the brother’s case?), then they must be ultimate geeks if they taught themselves all this without even going to college yet (I would assume).

  7. r xy says

    is this why people of other ethnicities seem to look all the same to us?

    like our brain just fills in a “black face” and its more or less the same for everyone?

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