Showing posts with label Douglas Bower. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Douglas Bower. Show all posts

3 January 2013

A Quality Eyewitness UFO-Alien Account


By: Douglas Bower 
The main problem with an eyewitness account of any event is reliability. Whether someone witnesses a homicide, car wreck, plane crash, or whether someone catches his mate in bed with someone else and they scream, "It isn't what it looks like." or whether someone claims to see an extraterrestrial spacecraft with a bunch of ET's crawling all over it trying to repair a malfunction, reliability is the issue with personal testimony. It doesn't mean that a personal testimony is a false one. It does not mean that when the milkman takes the witness stand in a court of law and says he saw Mr. Jones throw his wife's mother from the third story bedroom that he is lying. Mr. Jones' mother-in-law could have fallen out the window and Mr. Jones was trying to catch her before falling. Perspective is everything.

Multiple variables can affect the reliability of an eyewitness account. Whether the testifier is man or woman, child or adult, different worldviews through which interpretations are made, emotions, stress, authority figures like police, or even the age of the person telling the story can affect reliability.

"A University of Virginia study suggests that eyewitness reliability is linked to the age of the eyewitness. According to the study, older eyewitnesses are more likely to be mistaken in recollecting details and are also more likely to be certain about their erroneous recollections." []

Someone giving testimony can be absolutely sincere and be sincerely wrong in what he says happened. This is just the nature of the beast when it comes to eyewitness testimony.

This does not mean that someone who sincerely reports something as having happened is lying or even necessarily wrong. It does mean that the reliability of the testimony has to be considered in light of a heck of a lot of circumstances that might affect what the person thinks he saw. The variables that surrounded the witnessing of an event have to be considered. This is only fair. You have to consider what the person says he or she saw and then you have to consider what else it could have been. I apply this principle to my own sightings and close encounters of the third kind.

In any group consisting of human beings, there is going to be a kooky-fringe contingency. Whether it's church, the Boy Scouts, The Lion's Club, or the UFO-Alien enthusiasts, you are going to have the nut cases that give the goal and effort of the group a bad reputation. I think that's why I hesitated all these years in writing about this subject. It certainly is a departure from my usual genre, travel writing.

What the UFO-Alien field of study needs is to weed out the kooky reports and stick to the quality events that do get reported. There are some, believe it or not. There are events of not only eyewitness accounts but also accounts that are of such quality that one simply cannot commit intellectual suicide in dismissing them out-of-hand.

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