I think it’s great that your paper took the time to cover the topic of extraterrestrial abductions and the Experiencers Speak event (see “Taken Up,” September 6, by Deirdre Fulton). However, I think it also helped to encourage disinformation about the subject and ridicule those that have had such experiences.
The story was a sad reminder of the spiritually devoid society we live in where it is socially acceptable to make fun of people and things we have not experienced ourselves, do not understand or agree with. The snarky comments inserted after the abduction quiz questions illuminate my point. Now, I, myself, can have a wicked sense of humor and am no prude, as well as many other experiencers, but I’m looking forward to the day when the subject of ET encounters will be taken more seriously and scientifically by the masses. Your newspaper could have done more to encourage that. For example, a far better quote to have put in bold would have been researcher Kathleen Marden’s, “In the end, I was not able to prove that it was a mistake. There was overwhelming evidence that in fact led me to believe that this was a real event.” Anyone who had glanced at the article to determine whether it was worth reading or not, would have saw Susan Clancy’s quote in bold and would have been quick to dismiss the entire subject as not worth reading or looking into.
In regards to her belief that “Nobody reported being abducted before they saw it on TV or in the movies,” all I can say is that there is no way I was ever going to tell anyone about my experiences in the early 1960s for fear of ridicule, physical punishment, or religious persecution. I was brought up in a highly conservative Catholic family, church, and school and such things didn’t exist or were the work of the devil. Growing up in a small town with only a couple of TV channels, I had little interest in, knowledge of, or exposure to the UFO phenomena, therefore I had no frame of reference to invent what happened to me as a child. The only thing I know is that it happened and have come to find out later that it fits the description of what some ET beings and encounters resemble, and this is without undergoing hypnosis. Also, I never thought of them as demons as Michael Shermer suggested, and it didn’t feel like sleep paralysis, nor was I suffering from mental illness. As far as there not being any physical evidence, many experiencers have had implants removed that were found to be made of non earth-like materials, and have caught UFO and ET visitations on camera. (Stan Romanek has amassed an impressive collection.) In addition to this, many of the testimonies at the conference were made by highly respected and educated individuals with varying degrees in science and technology.
Furthermore, physicist and lecturer Stanton Friedman has gone on record to say that SETI has done more to hurt ufology than to help it. It only stands to reason that with billions and billions of planets in the universe, we can’t be the most intelligent life out there. If so, the universe is doomed.
While the article wasn’t entirely bad, it could have been far more interesting, accurate, and informative if it hadn’t fallen back on the typical us vs. them mentality. An intelligent conversation with some of the lecturers or even what’s going on today in the areas of advanced propulsion systems and free energy would have been far more interesting.
India Audrey Woods
Portsmouth, New Hampshire