- Debunkers of the unexplained insist that human testimony
is inherently unreliable. In addition to their relentless dishonesty, members
of the general public suffer from wishful thinking and overactive imaginations.
Interview 10 witnesses to the same event, and you'll hear 10 wildly disparate
and contradictory accounts. Objective facts tell the truth, but people
can only be trusted to lie.
- But this assertion of self-styled skeptics is apparently
a one-way street. While these folks relentlessly reject A PRIORI all testimony
that conflicts with their worldviews, they do not hesitate to endorse all
anecdotal claims that purportedly debunk the "paranormal."
- Take, for instance, the reaction of the "skeptical"
community (and their cohorts in the elite news media) to Greg Long's recent
book, "The Making of Bigfoot: The Inside Story." Long claims
to have solved the mystery of the Patterson film -- that famous (or infamous)
footage from 1967 of a large, upright walking, hairy beast. A 63-year old
man named Bob Hieronimus says that he was the "star" of the film,
and the original Bigfoot "costume" was traced by Long to a man
named Phillip Morris, who has "confessed" to his role in the
purported hoax. The evidence presented by Long (which includes the testimony
of many others, as well as legal documents signed by Patterson) has been
more than enough for most members of the media to declare "case closed!"
not only on the Patterson film, but the entire Bigfoot mystery.
- On October 7, 2004, the Yakima Herald-Republic published
an article with the bold title, "Bigfoot Hoax Goes in Halls of Hooey."
- ( Source: http://www.yakima-herald.com
- Journalist Leah Beth Ward makes numerous statements which
seem to endorse Hieronimus and Morris as truthful. She writes, "The
Yakima man who made history and legend 37 years ago by walking in Bigfoot's
flat feet donned the costume again this week to put the hoax firmly in
the halls of hooey."
- Ward continues, "Patterson, see, was a prankster
who thought he could make a million dollars by distributing the Bigfoot
film nationally. Enough audiences saw the image of the hairy primate that
it became an object of mythic proportions for some and gargantuan sarcasm
- This statement seems to imply that the Bigfoot phenomenon
did not exist prior to the Patterson film, but was a "myth" born
of media sensationalism. This is patently false, and I will demonstrate
this as I continue.
- Ward concludes her report by asking, "Will all this
truth-telling spell the end of Bigfoot?" I'm not sure what psychic
ability Ward possesses that enables her to categorically label these Bigfoot
"confessions" as "truth-telling." I'm curious as to
how this reporter would react if I told her I was the little green man
in Ray Santili's Alien Autopsy video. I could parade around in a rubber
alien suit from my local costume outlet, and the next day's headline would
read, "ET Sent Home! Existence of Aliens Disproved!"
- Let me make it clear that my goal here is neither to
attack the investigation of Greg Long, nor to defend the deceased Roger
Patterson. But I've always been leary of skeptics who try to limit Bigfoot
discussions to this one controversy. Generally, people who characterize
the film as the "best evidence" of Bigfoot are debunkers with
no real breadth of knowledge of the issue. Everyone knows that film and
video evidence can be faked, and it is certainly possible, perhaps even
likely, that Long's investigation has revealed the truth. That is why evidence
like the Patterson film can never provide more than one small piece of
a very large puzzle.
- Before we completely write off Bigfoot as a product of
modern hysteria and wishful thinking, we should remember the enormous body
of data, some anecdotal and some physical, that has been accumulated on
the alleged creature over many decades.
- Unbeknownst to most, people have been seeing Bigfoot-like
creatures since long before the Patterson film. One of the earliest published
accounts of a possible Bigfoot was found by cryptozoologist Loren Coleman,
in a newspaper report from the mid-19th century.
- From the May 9th, 1851 edition of the Memphis Enquirer:
"During March last, Mr. Hamilton of Greene county, Arkansas, while
out hunting with an acquaintance, observed a drove of cattle in a state
of apparent alarm, evidently pursued by some dreaded enemy. Halting for
the purpose, they soon discovered as the animals fled by them, that they
were followed by an animal bearing the unmistakable likeness of humanity.
He was of gigantic stature, the body being covered with hair and the head
with long locks that fairly enveloped his neck and shoulders. The 'wildman',
for we must so call him, after looking at them deliberately for a short
time, turned and ran away with great speed, leaping from twelve to fourteen
feet at a time. His foot prints measured thirteen inches each.
- "This singular creature has long been known traditionally
in St. Francis Green and Poinsett counties. Arkansas sportsmen and hunters
having described him so long
- as seventeen years since. A planter, indeed, saw him
very recently, but withheld his information lest he should not be credited,
until the account of Mr. Hamilton and his friend placed the existence of
the animal beyond cavil." (END EXCERPT)
- (Source: www.bfro.net/GDB/
- CNTS/AR/GE/ar_ge001.htm )
- This remarkable report describes eyewitness accounts
of a "wild-man" dating back to the 1830's. The author of this
piece even describes the existence of the animal as "beyond cavil,"
or beyond doubt. Remember, this was reported more than a hundred years
before the Patterson film, and the alleged birth of the modern Bigfoot
- Bigfoot characteristics described in this early account
are found consistently in the most recent sightings. I've interviewed a
number of Bigfoot eyewitnesses, including paranormal investigator Jason
Valenti. Valenti was driving with a business partner on a road bordering
Appalachicola state park in Florida, when he spotted an "animal"
standing nearly seven feet tall, with a face something like a "chimp
and a pit-bull's," female, and possessing pendulous breasts. Like
the creature described in the Arkansas account, this Bigfoot reportedly
had the ability to leap enormous distances. Valenti writes, "(The
passenger in the car) told me that a few seconds after we passed her, as
he was looking back through the window, he witnessed her leaping from a
standing position apprxoimately 20 to 30 feet horizontal, 10 to 15 feet
vertical and then landing into a full blown sprint through the sand pine
- Like many others who claim to have encountered Bigfoot
face to face, Valenti says that his entire belief system was "completely
shattered" as the result of his experience.
- Also fascinating are the many accounts of the Yeti (or
Abominable Snowman) from around the globe, particularly in the Himalayas.
The most compelling Yeti encounter I have ever come across was written
by Slavomir Rawicz in his critically acclaimed biography, The Long Walk.
Rawicz conveys the harrowing tale of his escape from a Soviet labor camp
in Siberia in 1941, and subsequent 2 year journey through China, the Gobi
Desert, Tibet, and over the Himalayas to British India. It was in the Himalayas
that Rawicz and his companions encountered a "family" of alleged
- Rawicz described the "Yetis" as over seven
feet in height, and covered with fur similar to that of apes in the orange-outang
species. He writes of his and his fellow travelers' futile struggle to
rationalize the creatures' bizarre appearance: "We decided unanimously
that we were examining a type of creature of which we had no previous experience
in the wild, in zoos or literature. It would have been easy to have seen
them waddle off at a distance and dismissed them as either big bear or
big ape of the orange-outang species. At close range they defied description.
There was something both of the bear and the ape about their general shape
but they could not be mistaken for either."
- The path of Rawicz and his companions was blocked by
the "Yetis," so they (the humans) observed the creatures for
one hour, even throwing rocks at the beasts in an attempt to frighten them
off. The "Yetis" did not seem to mind. One gentleman remarked,
"It occurs to me they might take it into their heads to come up and
investigate us. It is obvious they are not afraid of us. I think we had
better go while we are safe."
- Rawicz sums up his tale, writing: "What were they?
For years they remained a mystery to me, but since recently I have read
of scientific expeditions to discover the Abominable Snowman of the Himalayas
and studied descriptions of the creature given by native hillmen, I believe
that the five of us that day may have met two of the animals.."
- This account is terribly fascinating because of the tremendous
sincerity and credibility of Rawicz' entire tale, but also because of the
off-hand, almost incidental manner in which the author shared his experience.
The Long Walk was praised by the Los Angeles Times as "a book filled
with the spirit of human dignity and the courage of men seeking freedom,"
and the Chicago Tribune called it "One of the most amazing, heroic
stories of this or any other time."
- (To read the full excerpt from the Long Walk, visit
- http://www.rense.com/general29/191.htm )
- Of course, skeptics contend that eyewitness accounts
of Bigfoot and other unusual phenomena are meaningless without corroborative
physical proof. What, if any, physical evidence is there of Bigfoot's existence?
- A number of alleged "Bigfootprints" have been
subjected to analysis over the years, with mixed results. One person to
conduct such analysis was police fingerprint technician Jimmy Chilcutt,
a bona fide skeptic who purportedly sought to debunk so-called Bigfoot
- In 1995, Chilcutt began the novel task of analyzing the
prints of primates to "find primordial characteristics that would
unlock hidden information in human fingerprints." (Source: thehoustonchronicle.com)
By 1998, he had amassed over 1,000 primate prints, and was one of only
four or five researchers in the world studying the prints of animals. Chilcutt
states that he has discovered characteristics which enable him to distinsguish
between species, and locate different traits within species.
- In December of 1998, Chilcutt contacted Bigfoot researcher
Jeff Meldren, associate professor of anatomy at Idaho State University.
Meldren has a collection of over one hundred alleged Bigfoot plaster castings,
and Chilcutt was given free roam to analyze each casting. Chilcutt had
this to say about his conclusions: "What I actually found surprised
- "The print ridges on the bottoms of five castings
-- which were taken at different times and locations -- flowed lengthwise
along the foot, unlike human prints, which flow from side to side,"
- "'No way do human footprints do that -- never, ever.
- "The skeptic in me had to believe that (all of the
prints were from) the same species of animal," Chilcutt said. "I
believe that this is an animal in the Pacific Northwest that we have never
documented.'" (END EXCERPT).
- (Source: http://www.rense.com/politics6/fing.htm? ):
- Interestingly, I attempted a word search of "Jimmy
Chilcutt" on numerous skeptical websites, including csicop.org, and
randi.org, and could not find any matches. Have these people even HEARD
of Chilcutt's research? This appears to be in keeping with the standard
practice of so-called skeptics who habitually IGNORE and/or BURY evidence
which does not fit with their a priori assumptions.
- It is obvious that the Bigfoot mystery is a great deal
more complex than most of the media would have us believe. Irrespective
of the Patterson controversy, we have more than enough data to warrant
further investigation by mainstream science.
- We must also remember that it is erroneous to label Bigfoot
as a "paranormal" phenomenon. Science is discovering new species
of animals all the time, including exotic primates - nothing paranormal
about that. As recently as 2003, a new "mystery ape" was discovered
in the heart of Africa which is said to have characteristics of both the
gorilla and the chimpanzee. The as-yet-to-be classified ape is also said
to have feet over 14 inches long, more than 2 inches longer than a typical
gorilla's. Most unusually, it was discovered thousands of miles from the
nearest documented ape habitat. One primatologist who examined the beasts
at an Omaha zoo said, "I can't speculate yet as to what they are.
Their behavior is so unusual. It's a puzzle....The possibility is there
that this is a new species due to isolation....I feel like Dr. Doolittle
in the land of Oz."
- (Source: http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news
- Noted skeptic Michael Shermer once wrote: "It is
the fate of the paranormal and the supernatural to be subsumed into the
normal and the natural. In fact, there is no paranormal or supernatural;
there is only the normal and the natural--and mysteries yet to be explained."
- One can only hope that the world's skeptics will learn
to leave the door open to life's mysteries a bit longer.