Failure? Not so fast there Chicago Tribune!("Dewey Defeats Truman!" look that up here: http://www.deweydefeatstruman.com/ )<quoted text>
I hate to tell you what a failure your little story is.
You are trying to compare a 20th Century event with that of an ancient event. The written records of that time would be near nothing. The eye witnesses, if you could find them would be scarce.
The written "records" you say? Are you referring to the official records of the 12th Precinct of the Roman garrison in Jerusalem or the Temple Guard over in the 11th Ward?(LOL @ you)
FYI, the 4 gospels are ancient attempts at biographies. They aren't modern biographies, and they are primitive by our own standards, but they do attempt to record what Jesus said and did. Now you need to understand that the culture of that time didn't really place much emphasis on Jesus' life as a young child. It wouldn't have mattered in the context of what He accomplished in adulthood.
Now, as it relates to my example, the Gospel of Luke is actually a letter and starts with a prologue that is intended to assure a wealthy Roman citizen (Theophilus) that what has been passed down by oral tradition is correct. This prologue points to the exact same historical method that I described in my JFK scenario. The same process was used then, and is still in use today. Here is the opening passage in Luke that illustrates this:
" (1)Many people have set out to write accounts about the events that have been fulfilled among us.(2) They used the eyewitness reports circulating among us from the early disciples.(3) Having carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I also have decided to write a careful account for you, most honorable Theophilus,(4) so you can be certain of the truth of everything you were taught." -Luke 1:1-4
This statement is written to show historical integrity, and if written even with 50 years of the time of Jesus' would still be accurate.
Your comparison of 1st century reporting and 20th century reporting is historical ethnocentrism, because we cannot transpose our methods upon that culture at that time in history. Their culture was different, and to accurately understand them, we have to adapt to their style when interpreting both the text and the purpose of their writing.
Would you compare a 1922 Model T Ford to a 2012 Ford Fusion if you were interested in how the Ford Model T was designed? No. You would stick with the story of the Model T. Now if you were talking about the engineering history of the Ford Motor Company, then you could show the changes in design and manufacturing, and how Ford became more efficient through time. But you still wouldn't compare the Fusion to the Model T, because the Model T was the latest technology available from 1908 to about 1926-27.
Cultural ethnocentrism might be valid when comparing something like modern political views with opposing modern political views,(or religions) but not with regard to history.
I'm sorry if I've made too much sense for you folks to handle today.
I'll take a break and let your minds relax. I can smell the smoke from here.