Aug 12 2008

Stanton Friedman on UFOs and Public Opinion

Published by at 1:04 am under Wave Guide 2: Public Opinion

Larry King — on his 1994 TV special from Rachel, Nevada (near Area 51) — introduced him as the “Dean of UFO researchers.” And why not? Stanton Friedman has been doing research and scientific investigation of UFOs for 50 years, published more than 80 scientific UFO papers, and has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV programs. He’s the original civilian investigator of the Roswell Incident and co-authored Crash at Corona: The Definitive Study of the Roswell Incident among other books.

A classmate of Carl Sagan at the University of Chicago, Stan received his BSc and MSc degrees there in physics. He was employed for 14 years as a nuclear physicist at GE, GM, Westinghouse, TRW Systems, Aerojet General Nucleonics, and McDonnell Douglas on advanced, classified, eventually cancelled, projects as nuclear aircraft, fission and fusion rockets, and nuclear powerplants for space.

Although Stan doesn’t make this claim himself, I’d be surprised if anyone in history has talked in person to more people about UFOs than he has, given that since 1967 he’s lectured on the topic “Flying Saucers ARE Real!” at more than 600 colleges and over 100 professional groups in 50 states, 9 provinces, 16 other countries. I had the pleasure of meeting Stan about 12 years ago in Arizona at one of his presentations; they are data-rich, exciting, and very thought-provoking.

Needless to say, Stan’s an excellent human barometer regarding public opinion about extraterrestrials and their ability to come here, and he devotes a chapter to this in his new book Flying Saucers and Science (2008).

Public Opinion is Wave Guide #2 because it often drives major technology and exploration activities during a Maslow Window and serves as an early indicator of an impending Maslow Window. For example, public opinion is linked with generational waves (e.g., Millennials), pop culture, and even long-term social cycles (e.g., Sarkar) that point to increased public interest in space, technology, and/or exploration and expanding ebullience.

Indeed, as we approach the 2015 Maslow Window, when Moonbases, international competition in space, and the possibility of alien life, begin to take center stage again, the public may insist that all information about UFOs be revealed by government sources. As the 2015 economic boom elevates the public to higher Maslow heirarchy levels, the need to explore and know the truth increases.

In his book, Stan paints a picture of typical UFO witnesses as feeling alone and being afraid of ridicule, “They would think I was some kind of nut.” When in fact, about 10% of his large audiences have made a sighting. He quotes Gallup polls over decades back to 1966 showing the percent of Americans that believe UFOs are real hovers between 46% and 57% and — contrary to popular belief — that educated individuals (e.g., college vs high school) are more likely to believe UFOs are real. As I’ve mentioned before, many engineers and scientists are increasingly intrigued by UFOs.

Reversing these common misconceptions about UFOs is important according to Stan because they make journalists afraid to cover a UFO sighting or lecture, scientists reluctant to study UFO data or sponsor UFO theses, and people with sightings hesistant to report them. If you’d like to “lift the laughter curtain” that inhibits “full disclosure by individuals and full investigation by scientists and journalists,” contact Stanton Friedman at fsphys@rogers.com or through his website.

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