Roswell, New Mexico - Nothing special happened here, unless you can prove otherwise!
On or about July 7, 1947, an experimental weather balloon crashed near Roswell, New Mexico. Due to over enthusiasm on someone’s part, a press-release was sent out saying that they had found the remains of a “flying disk”. A correction was issued later that day, everyone realized their mistakes, and that was the end of it.
Well, at least it was the end of it in the world of reality.
The story was largely ignored until the 1970’s when it began to become widely known within UFO fanatic circles. Then it eventually wormed its way into the national consciousness where it has, sadly, resided to this very day, despite the efforts of the media to do basically nothing to dislodge it.
Due to the combination of conspiracy theories centering around this (“The guv’mint covered it up!”), and the fact that the media acts as a willing accessory in this story (“What really happened at Roswell? We’ll give you the official information, then lots of innuendo and baseless statements we’ll present as reality and let you decide!”), this article fits neatly into both the Conspiracy Theories and You! and Mass-Media Nonsense! categories here on my blog. True, most conspiracy theories touch both areas, but this one is especially egregious.
In many ways this is the grand-daddy of conspiracy theories. It ties in the idea of aliens visiting the Earth and shadowy, government cover-ups of this, and possibly other, UFO events. I’d say it’s second only to the Kennedy Assassination Conspiracy Theories in popularity and importance.
Of course there’s no actual evidence that it was a flying saucer or a disk or anything other than a weather balloon that was recovered at the crash site. Naturally the absence of any evidence is, to some thinkers, perfect proof that what they say happened, happened. After all, if the government covered it up, how could there be any evidence?
Because of this lack of evidence, all that we have are memories of a few people. Memories which were doubtless corrupted by time, wishful thinking, an eagerness to please, fame and money. This is part of why eyewitness accounts of events are not always reliable; everyone sees things differently. I’m not saying anyone is actually deliberately lying about what they witnessed, I’m just saying that they might not be providing an accurate picture of what actually happened.
The media is completely complicit in this whole thing, of course. If they didn’t talk about it so much, we wouldn’t know about it, at least not the extent that we do. If the mainstream media did their job (ie: “There is no evidence at all of any alien craft or bodies or of any sort of government cover-up of these events” instead of doing their usual wink, nod, spreading their hands, grinning inanely and saying, “Well, no one knows for sure!”), this whole thing wouldn’t have reached the point it’s at now.
Here’s a great example. Check out this video from CNN. Now at one point Miles O’Brien (and I love the fact that at one point O’Brien was hosting a news show with someone named Kira), says, “Are we ever gonna know what really happened?” Well, of course we are. We do. A weather balloon crashed. That’s what all the evidence points to. No evidence points to an alien spacecraft.
Consider also an interview with an old woman in that video. The incident happened when she was twelve. In 1947. Sixty-one years ago! Surely it’s entirely possible that after all that time, with her being told by various people that, oooo, it must’ve been a UFO, she might’ve started thinking, well, maybe, and her imagination began to fill in the blanks. Speaking just for myself I’d have a tough time recalling the details of a warm August night in 1986 when I first had sex. I can recall that it happened, but it was twenty-two years ago. My recollection of the fine details is hazy at best and I’m sure much of what I remember isn’t quite how it happened. That’s a little more than a third of the time this woman is talking about. I’m sure that in 2047 (ooooh! 100 years after Roswell! Coincidence? I THINK SO!), my memories of something that happened in 1986 will be even hazzier than they are now.
Please note: I’m not saying she’s lying. I think she really believes what she’s saying. That doesn’t make it true and it’s a great example of why eyewitness evidence is not the best.
Of course it’s not too late to correct this nonsense. All the media has to do is stop covering Roswell. Just do that until there’s some real, verifiable, hard evidence of anything other than the official government story of what happened that night. Until then, they should be responsible and do their jobs and ignore this idiocy.
As for the conspiracy theorists, you guys need to get a life. There’s no proof of what you say (not that that stops you). If you have proof, please come forward. But you don’t. Instead you come forward with the usual collection of innuendo and half-baked theories that aren’t supported by any evidence.
Also remember this folks: yes, there’s probably aliens out there. I’ve written about that before. But they probably aren’t coming here to observe us. Why would they? What makes us that interesting?
And no, the government isn’t covering up alien contact. Again, why would they? What does it gain them? You can make the usual noises about “national panic” but I think after 9/11 we can all say the public isn’t quite as panic-prone as we might think. On that day there were some uncomfortable moments and bad choices by some members of the public (like my sister who pulled her kids out of school and her money out of the bank), but most people kept their heads and watched the news.
I know this conspiracy theory won’t go away. It makes too much money for the people involved. I also know the media won’t stop covering it. It makes too much money for them. But is it too much for me to want to hold everyone to a higher standard?
Oh, well. I’m sure anyone from the conspiracy crowd will simply say that I’m delusional or in the pocket of the government. If that’s the case, damn it, I want a paycheck! :)