If They Had Passed it…

If the Indiana State Legislature had passed Bill 246, and if the worst-case scenario had proved legally valid, namely that the value of \pi in law was different from its mathematical value, the consequences would have been distinctly interesting. Suppose that the legal value is p \neq \pi, but the legislation states that p=\pi. Then,

\frac{p-\pi}{p-\pi} mathematically, \frac{p-\pi}{p-\pi}=0 legally,

Since mathematical truths are legally valid, the law could then be maintaining that 1=0. Therefore, all murderers have a cast-iron defence: admit to one murder, then argue that legally it is zero murders. And, that’s not the last of it. Multiply by one billion, to deduce that one billion equals zero. Now any citizen apprehended in possession of no drugs is in possession of drugs to a street value of $ 1 blilion.

In fact, any statement whatsover would become legally provable.

It seems likely that the Law would not be quite logical enough for this kind of argument to hold up in court. But sillier legal statements, often based on abuse of statistics, have done just that, causing innocent people to be locked away for long periods. So, Indiana’s legislator’s might have opened up Pandora’s box.

More later,

Nalin Pithwa

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