Claims of bigotry unfounded

Jerry Moore

WATERTOWN — Does Bigfoot exist or not?

I recall hearing stories of numerous sightings while growing up. One major presumption at the time was that Bigfoot was the missing link between humans and other primates.

My skepticism about all this hasn’t subsided over the decades. There are too many unresolved issues for me to take this seriously.

For example, how in the world has no one found a way to get a sharp, clear photo or video of Sasquatch? Every image I’ve seen is far off and/or blurry — nothing definitive. And reports of huge footprints put on display often turned out to be hoaxes.

Naturalists have been able to conclusively document the existence of species long thought to be extinct all over the world. Yet this one creature has somehow eluded a direct, up-close contact with humans.

Michael Guimond of Massena reported seeing something dash across County Route 37 at about 11:30 p.m. on June 20. Apparently, Northern New York hosts many Bigfoots/Bigfeet (on the Facebook page for the Ogdensburg-based Seaway Valley Bigfoot Research, commenters actually engaged in a discussion about the proper writing style for this animal in the plural). There have been a lot of Sasquatch sightings here over the years.

According to a story published June 26 in the Watertown Daily Times, there were 113 reports of Bigfoot sightings last year in New York (the article referenced Microsoft News as the source for this figure). Do we host a colony of them in this state?

If there were so many sightings, why didn’t we get something to prove this mystery once and for all? Is the Bigfoot species smarter than us, able to avoid close scrutiny?

Rather than the missing link between humans and apes, is Sasquatch actually a more evolved version of homo sapiens? Is that where we’re all headed ourselves?

When you consider the countless reports of sightings since the 19th century, our inability to capture a Bigfoot or find a deceased Sasquatch body strongly indicates that devotees are following a trail to nowhere. It’s inconceivable that we haven’t yet accomplished this given all the surveillance technology we possess.

“By far, the most common evidence presented for the existence of Bigfoot is eyewitness reports. There have been more than 10,000 eyewitness accounts of the creature in the continental U.S. in the last 50 years, Live Science reported in 2019. In these accounts, Bigfoot is usually described as being about 8 to 10 feet (2.4 to 3 meters) tall and covered in hair,” according to a story published April 14 by LiveScience.com. “Unfortunately, Bigfoot sightings are also by far the weakest type of evidence. Eyewitness accounts are based on memories, and memories are not reliable, Live Science previously reported. Crime witnesses, for example, can be influenced by their emotions and may miss important details in what they are seeing. In the same vein, people also often overestimate their ability to remember things. When it comes to cryptids like Bigfoot, the human brain is capable of making up explanations for events it can’t immediately interpret, and many people simply want to believe they exist, Live Science previously reported. Some people claim to have heard Bigfoot vocalizations, including howls, growls and screams. The creatures are also associated with other noises such as wood-knocking, according to Scientific American. Recordings of these noises occasionally attract media attention but can usually be attributed to known animals, such as foxes or coyotes.”

Peter Byrne, director of the Bigfoot Information Center and Exhibition in The Dalles, Ore., asked the FBI to study what he considers possible evidence of Sasquatch, an article published June 6, 2019, by History.com reported. He sent the agency more than a dozen hairs attached to a piece of skin. Could an in-depth probe by the federal government crack the Bigfoot case wide open?

Of course, the samples submitted turned out not to be from Bigfoot. In 1977, the FBI announced that “the hairs are of deer family origin.”

Sasquatch fans want us to accept that this species is abundant enough to result in frequent sightings but not abundant enough to be verified by scientists. Anyone who needs to “believe” something is true lacks proof. We as a society should focus on more pressing concerns rather than indulging some people’s wishful thinking.

Although, it’s odd that you never see Sasquatch and QAnon in the same room together. Hmmm, get Mulder and Scully on the phone. This is something that the government should investigate!

Jerry Moore is the editorial page editor for the Watertown Daily Times. Readers may call him at 315-661-2369 or send emails to jmoore@wdt.net. They also may follow him on Twitter: @WDT_OpEd.

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(1) comment

rdsouth

There's no room for a breeding population of such a large species to remain so rare in the places it is being reported in modern times. If there is any validity to the sightings what we have is a variant of some other species.

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