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Grey Matter

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Cattle Mutes and Other Childhood Memories

I was wondering if I would come up with anything to write about this week, but then I was reading Richard Dolan's new book, UFOs and the National Security State, Vol 2, and I got to the part about the 1974 - 75 cattle mutilations and that brought back some memories.

I don't think I have ever written about it, but those mutilations were are very big deal and widely covered here in New Mexico. There were often reports on the local news and in the local paper. Back then, there were two basic theories (aside from predators): aliens/ufos and Satanic cults. Being 8 or 9 years old, both of those theories scared me. I could understand that Satanic cults would be evil, that is what would be expected. However, with the lack of blood and footprints, even at that age, I was pretty sure they weren't to blame. That left the UFO theory and I couldn't understand why the space aliens would want to kill our animals. Up until then, I had believed that the UFO people were nice. I'm not sure why I believed that, but I did and so the thought that they would kill animals totally confused me because I have always loved animals very much. I was both frightened and fascinated.

My grandmother was totally fascinated by the mutilations. She often gave her expert opinion that it was not done by predators. She didn't grow up on a farm, but she did have relatives that owned farms and spent a lot of time on them, so whether it did or not, she believed it made her an expert on the matter. I remember her looking at the front page of the Albuquerque Journal which had a photo of a cow mute on it and telling me to look at that -- no coyote did that. I looked and although I didn't know much about predators at the time, it didn't seem to me that whatever had killed that cow had been very interested in eating it.

I don't know what her expert opinion was on what exactly was doing the mutes, but I do remember she threw a new conspiracy into it (new back then, to me) that possibly the government was involved in doing it. For some reason, totally unknown to me, my grandmother had a deep mistrust of the US government. She had no doubt that they killed Kennedy and likely if she were still alive she might be listening to Alex Jones every day and agreeing with much of it. Since I mostly grew up with her, that probably explains a lot of my own conspiratorial leanings and basic mistrust of governments and officials.

Thinking back, it is kind of funny what we remember of news events from childhood. There are only a few news events that I remember really well, 1) the mutilations 2) Jonestown 3) Elvis' death 4) Watergate (though, I didn't understand much of it) 5) President Ford being shot at (both times). I also remember, what was probably Apollo 17, since it is the only moon landing that happened when I was old enough to grasp what was going on. Strangely, if you think about it, all those events are at least in some way linked to something esoteric and/or conspiracy related, if not outright esoteric/conspiratorial.

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