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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 1999 > Jan > Jan 17

Re: Military Retirees & Secrecy

From: Jerome Clark <jkclark@frontiernet.net>
Date: Sun, 17 Jan 99 15:41:16 PST
Fwd Date: Sun, 17 Jan 1999 21:14:24 -0500
Subject: Re: Military Retirees & Secrecy

>Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 22:40:08 +0000
>To: UFO UpDates - Toronto <updates@globalserve.net>
>From: John Rimmer  <magonia@magonia.demon.co.uk>
>Subject: Re: Military Retirees & Secrecy

>>Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 10:53:34 -0800 (PST)
>>From: Scott LeGrand <varelse@best.com>
>>To: updates@globalserve.net
>>Subject: Re: Military Retirees & Secrecy

>>>Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 11:12:44 +0000
>>>To: UFO UpDates - Toronto <updates@globalserve.net>
>>>From: John Rimmer <magonia@magonia.demon.co.uk>
>>>Subject: Re: UFO UpDate: Re: Military Retirees & Secrecy

>Maybe, but there's still a helluvalot more money in gullibilty
>than scepticism. I just want to make it clear that the alleged
>great public hostility to UFO experients is largely a myth.

Ah, if only this were true.  The enormous amount of attention
UFOs and UFO-related subjects gets only enhances the climate of
ridicule surrounding ufology, sadly.  In a sense, no publicity
would be preferable to the sort of publicity UFOs get here. With
rare exception, positive treatments of UFOs get the tabloid
treatment, trivializing the subject and providing yet more
fodder for stand-up comics and self-righteous debunkers.  With
rare exception, elite media -- which set the agenda for
"responsible" opinion on UFOs and other matters  -- treat
ufology with contempt as a fringe pursuit.  It all ends up
sounding like something out of the CSICOP hymn book.

As a historian of this subject, I am frankly amazed that more
than five decades into the public phase of this phenomenon,
science and elite opinion continue to resist the simple notion
that there may be something interesting here, something that
deserves more attention and a better explanation than it has
receive heretofore. If anything, UFOs are subjected to more
ridicule than ever.  The silliness and excess of some UFO
enthusiasts haven't helped, but I doubt that it is the main
cause.  If they choose, intelligent people can tell the
difference between such trivial concerns and the more serious
questions raised by the persistence of puzzling UFO sightings.
In any case, ufologists as such simply lack the influence to
influence opinion, even in a negative direction, all that much.

There was a time when a well-regarded, much-read, mainstream
magazine such as Life could not only deal seriously with UFOs
but argue seriously for the possibility of ET visitation.  No
magazine could do that today.  In fact, it's hard to imagine
that any comparable publication would treat UFOs as deserving
any more than a passing sneer.  True, the Sturrock panel's very
cautious conclusions did get some respectful attention; they
also got their share of rhetorical abuse; for details, go to

UFOs, sad to say, are a subject for a future generation to take
up and do justice by.   Till then, ridicule calls the tune.

Jerry Clark

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