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Grey Matter



Recently on UFO Updates there was a little discussion about the term "UFO Festival." Certain people don't like the word "festival" to be associated with UFOs, the feeling being that this would somehow keep people from taking the subject seriously. They may have been kidding, but there are people who feel that way.

Really the word "festival" is what keeps people from taking UFOs seriously? Maybe it is the way some Ufologists dress? A few weeks back a commenter at UFO Magazine blog blamed Micah's typo for bringing down ufology -- "It's errors like this that bring down pro-UFO articles." Micah had merely typed the wrong date for something and any idiot could have figured that out.

My guess of what is keeping people from taking Ufology seriously is Stanton T. Friedman's beard.

Seriously though, it is none of those things (even put together with a bunch of more legit crap) that is keeping Ufology from being taken seriously. In fact, I think people within Ufology don't actually realize that aside from debunkers, many people do take UFOs seriously. Why don't they realize it? I guess because the mass media gods don't take it seriously and how can anything be taken seriously if they aren't reporting seriously on it? However, I am always amazed by the amount of regular people that do take it seriously and think the mass media and the government are covering things up.

I would say that 9 out of 10 people I meet have some belief in ETs or some other intelligence that is not what we would term as a human or Earthling and that may be flying around in the skies. You might not find them posting about it on the Internet or attending a festival or conference, but that doesn't mean that they don't take it seriously or don't believe something strange is going on. Most of them just don't have much extra time to devote to the subject.

I think people within Ufology have started to take the debunkers and their methods way too seriously. To the point where you can't have fun or call something a "festival" without them feeling that it shakes the credibility of Ufology. It doesn't. The debunkers like to make you think that it does because that is what they do, but they are a very small portion of the population and will never take Ufology seriously whether you use the word "festival" or not.

By the way, "festival" is a proper term for something like Roswell's annual event. You can call it whatever you want, but it is still a festival. It brings together all kinds of people and all ages and they hopefully have some fun as well as learn a few things. I see nothing at all wrong with that. Frankly, stuffy conferences mostly only attract those that already believe and the people there might take it all very seriously, but I don't see it convincing anyone else that Ufology should be taken seriously.

I don't get this big need to be taken seriously anyhow. What is the purpose? Will it force the government to suddenly give out huge research grants to Ufologists or something? Will it open up more slots on Larry King Live for panel discussions? I suppose that maybe it is because that certain people believe they deserve more respect for their work in Ufology. Likely they do deserve more respect. However, most people feel that they deserve more respect than they get for their profession or endeavors and they don't get it either. That is just how it is.

Myself, I plan to go right on talking about and believing in UFOs. I don't care how many people don't take it seriously. I think that is their problem, not mine. I promise not to lose my sense of humor and will continue to use the word festival, make lots of typos, read others that make typos, not give a crap how people dress and admit that I actually like Stanton's beard. I will also continue to link to Weekly World News whenever it tickles my funny bone.

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