From the Chicago Tribune, 6/26/94: Outer space creatures need not apply on Earth Associate
From the Chicago Tribune, 6/26/94:
Outer space creatures need not apply on Earth
TUKWILA, Wash.--So you believe Earth has been visited by unidentified
flying objects and the evidence has been supressed by the government?
Or that hypnosis or psychotherapy can enable you to recover memories from
before you were born?
Or that creatures from outer space regularly abduct humans, subject them to
sexual abuse and use them for breeding experiments with aliens?
Well, you have plenty of company, and that makes you a part of one of the
biggest problems in science, say astronomer Carl Sagan and other debunkers of
"It's not that we're grumpy about lost continents or UFOs," Sagan said
Friday at the national convention of the Committee for the Scientific
Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal, a skeptics' group.
"It's that the world can ill afford such scientific illiteracy."
Surveys indicate 25 percent to 50 percent of adult U.S. citizens "don't
know the Earth goes around the sun once a year," Sagan said.
"Almost every newspaper in the United States has an astrology column...and
none has a daily science column. Some have a weekly science column. Why is
that?" he asked. "When is the last time you heard an intelligent remark on
science from a president of the United States?"
He was joined by Philip Klass, a UFO investigator and former senior
avionics editor of Aviation Week and Space Technology, and Elizabeth Loftus, a
University of Washington psychology professor and expert on repressed and false
memory, at a news conference during the conference.
Klass attacked the claims of alien abduction devotees who believe people
who suppress memories of being abducted and molested will be doomed to repeat
the experience--along with their children and grandchildren.
Most of the 740 people attending the convention are psychologists, said
Paul Kurtz, chairman and founder of the committee, based in Buffalo.
On Thursday, there was a debate between John Mack, a Harvard psychiatrist
who believes about 90 of his patients have been abducted and molested by space
aliens, and Donna Bassett, a journalist from North Carolina who convinced Mack
she was an abductee and then wrote about her "treatment."
E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank