Adam Chilton on Judges as Referees

Judges as Referees

This makes judges seem more like basketball referees than baseball umpires. When refs are calling a basketball game, most fans are open to the idea that the refs might call the game differently depending on the circumstances. When the stakes are high—at the end of the game, in the playoffs—we’re often cool with the umpires giving the players more leeway. If this is the right analogy, maybe it’s a little unfair to say that judges aren’t doing a great job of calling balls and strikes when they are actually playing a different game.

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