The following tweets were made by Professor Grundy and went viral. She is professor of African-American studies. The tweets are good for you to practice Statement Analysis upon, and they are of particular value in that they may trigger an emotional response that you do not want to ignore, lest it influence your analysis.
First, a short lesson on language.
Tweets are often shorter, abbreviated and sometimes lack pronouns. When this is so, the emergence of a pronoun is very important when the baseline is without pronouns. Pronouns give ownership, responsibility, and strength to statements.
With tweets, texts and emails, we seek to establish a baseline, and the analysis begins there. We draw up the same "Expected versus Unexpected" standard for these that we do in all statements.
Each one of us has a personal, subjective dictionary with, on average, 25,000 words. Exempt from the subjective nature of this vast dictionary are the following:
3. Objective time on the clock
1. Pronouns are universal and instinctive. They require no pre-thought, and are 100% accurate for analysis. "We" will indicate more than a lone person, for example. Where we find that the pronouns are "lying", it is conclusively deception indicated. This is such a powerfully intuitive element of the English language that it is our only exception to not indicating one for deception on a single red flag. Pronouns do not lie.
Possessive pronouns develop so early in human life, that they can pre-date discernible speech.
Picture the one year old child opening and closing his hand with the notion of "my", taking ownership of what he wants, with "my" often being an early developed word. When, for example, OJ Simpson said "for those of you who believe in my guilt...", he took ownership of guilt.
When the killer of Sarah Cherry, Dennis Dechaine testified that "we were losing daylight", he signaled that he was not alone, as claimed. This, alone, is 100% accurate and reliable.
In trainings, we use a simple exercise to prove this point by first asking someone what they had for breakfast 2 days ago and watch them struggle. Then, depending upon age, we ask them to consider telling us a true story from at least 20 years ago, without revealing the chosen story. We then ask them if they know to begin the story with "I", or with "we", they find 100% accurate use of the selected pronoun, without having to tax the memory.
By 3, pronouns are strong, and by 5, they are 'cemented' into the mind of the child to the point of no pre-thought (disruption of the speed of transmission necessary) they flow with ease.
Pronouns recognize gender, plurality, and possession. They indicate closeness, distances, and even quality of relationships between humans. See teaching on social introductions for more.
The English language takes time to learn, and it is that errors in language are corrected, not due to racism as now claimed, nor regionalism, but because the nature of this world: things worth learning take effort, and the effort, itself, 'exercises' the brain, allowing for increase. This is why English teachers of yesteryear "red penned" grammar and spelling mistakes to elevate the students' abilities in order to compete in adulthood.
Articles: "a, an, the" are simple to learn and once memorized, move, over time, to instinctive, though this may not be seen completely by age 5, but sometimes closer to age 7.
Article: "a" versus "an" takes even longer to use, but it is the article, "the" that 'cements in' or becomes intuitive also by age 7. The most useful context in Statement Analysis is in introduction of a noun.
Here is a brief example:
"A man approached me from behind. He had a gun. He told me he would shoot me and pushed the gun into my back. I gave the man my purse and ran"
It has 32 words in total.
Here is the same statement with emphasis added highlighting only articles.
"A man approached me from behind. He had a gun. He told me he would shoot me and pushed the gun into my back. I gave the man my purse and ran."
You will note that he was "a" man, but once identified, he became "the" man of whom she gave her purse to. Unknown to her, the subject, he was "a" man, but once identified, he rightfully and instinctively became "the" man. She did not pause to consider which article to use.
This is instinctive.
On its form, the above statement is likely to be true.
Here is the same statement, with slight changes, including the location of the articles:
"The man approached me from behind. He had the gun. He said to me that he would shoot me and pushed a gun into my back. I gave a man my purse and left"
Did you note the changes?
Did you note the location of the article, "the"beginning the statement?
If this is an open statement, it is deceptive, and the interview will likely prove that she knows the gunman and is seeking to conceal this information.
If this is an open statement it is deceptive.
Why did I add, "if this is an open statement" to the text?
Here is why:
If the investigator interviewed her before the statement, the statement is "contaminated" and likely to be influenced by him and show up in the language. If in the interview (which should be obvious) she talked about "a man" with the investigator, by the time she wrote this, he is now "the" man, since he has been identified.
Always get a written statement first, whenever possible. Those proficient in Statement Analysis will move to "Discourse Analysis" in which they eventually catch these elements "live" while being verbally expressed. For our example, however, and how we learn:
We crawl first, then we walk, and when we are proficient at walking, we begin to jog, and so on, with the hope of becoming an Olympic sprinter of analysis. It takes practice, practice and more practice.
Let's go back to the statement under the assumption that it was an "open statement", either verbal or in writing, and there was no discussion first.
Did you catch the change in communicative language?
In the first statement, she used "told", which is authoritative and "expected" in a coercive action. The presence of a weapon and the stronger, "told" is consistent.
However, in the deceptive statement, she did not outright lie. In fact, she is 100% truthful. Remember: few people will lie outright. Most all deception is missing information.
Sentence by sentence a deceptive statement can be true, but simply missing the most critical information:
She knew the gunman.
Did you note the change with "left"? It is at the point of leaving, or 'running away' in the deceptive version, that indicates missing information.
Let's break it down. Here is the deceptive statement:
"The man approached me from behind.
"The man" is a male (gender identified) that she knows, therefore, the use of the word "the" is appropriate for her. This is a signal that she knows him.
He did, in fact, approach her from behind, as planned in a fake robbery report.
He had the gun.
In a pre planned scam, the participants know what weapons they have. This is 100% truthful.
He said to me that he would shoot me and pushed a gun into my back.
In this staged robbery, he did not "tell" her, but he "said" it to her, as part of a script, and, in fact, this is a truthful account to her.
Yet, why did she then get mixed up and say "a" gun?
This may reflect knowledge of him having more than one gun.
He really did push it into her back, too, making her sentence complete.
Another 100% truthful sentence.
I gave the man my purse and left."
This is also true. Later, when the purse was found without money in it, investigators learned that in the staging of the 'robbery', she didn't put any money into it. She did not feel it necessary for the 'show.'
The 'show' was for a grainy old-school video security camera which was too weak to show faces.
In most cases, it is an outright fabrication and the articles reveal as much. There was no "man" and because it comes from the imagination, deceptive subjects sometimes confuse the articles.
Articles do not lie.
Pronouns do not lie.
This was a truthful, deceptive statement. It was truthful, A - Z, on its own, but withheld the fact that she knew the man and planned this beforehand.
"Left" indicates missing information. Her mind was on what happened, or was said, perhaps, that a video only security camera would not pick up.
3. Time on the clock is objective. (versus the subjective time passing that we measure in analysis).
When one says it is "2PM", it will be two hours past noon for all of us. There is no subjectivity here. This one is simple, and needs no examples for analysis.
These are the three 'exemptions' to the law of the personal dictionary.
Each of us has a subjective personal vocabulary of approximately 25,000 words. When recounting or answering the question, "What happened?", the person will go into this vast dictionary, choose what words to use, where to place the words, what verb tenses to use, what words and information not to use and structure it in an order that is important to the person:
all in less than a second.
This is the speed of transmission.
A disruption in this speed causes internal stress.
It is this stressful disruption that gives us our signals that something is amiss.
In the following tweets from Saidy Grundy, what questions, specifically, do we need answered?
Using the above principles, write out what questions you would need for her to answer in order to complete an interview, based upon the tweets, alone. Stay within principle.
Hint: while staying in principle, be aware of your emotional response to the topic itself.
It is fine to comment on the texts, but first get the most important questions written. Also, consider adding something about how you felt going through the statements. It is not only part of emotional intelligence, but the self awareness can inspire others in the same.
Since our words reveal us, what do you know about Grundy?
hint: stay within principle. be open minded.
I am interested in reading your analysis, commentary, as well as any profile of the subject that you feel emerges.
Here are the tweets of Saidy Grundy.
The emphasis is added in the underlining only.
“White masculinity isn’t a problem for america’s colleges, white masculinity is THE problem for america’s colleges"
Note what is stated in the negative is of higher importance to the subject than that which is in the positive. In this tweet, it begins in the negative, elevating its important. The capitalization of "THE" is the author's emphasis.
“Every MLK week I commit myself to not spending a dime in white-owned businesses. and every year i find it nearly impossible.”
“Why is white America so reluctant to identify white college males as a problem population?'
We take particular note of a question in an open statement even if it is considered "rhetorical", as the subject may be speaking to herself.
Boston University responded to concerns that the Professor will be grading white male papers:
“Professor Grundy is exercising her right to free speech and we respect her right to do so,” Boston University spokesman Colin Riley.