Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Conspiracy Theories

You may have noticed that over the past several years the concept of conspiracy theories has become more popular with some individuals while at the same time being immediately dismissed by others. Recently the label of conspiracy theorist is being used as an insult.

The definition of conspiracy is "a secret plan by a group to do something unlawful or harmful." A conspiracy theory is defined as "a theory that rejects the standard explanation for an event and instead credits a covert organization with carrying out a secret plot."

Since the world began there have been countless conspiracies and you would have to be a fool to think that they don't exist. Anytime people work together in an attempt to cover up a crime it is a conspiracy. The problem is when some people attribute almost everything they see on the news or in the government as a conspiracy. 

There are some really good movies address this topic. Films like Close Encounters, 3 Days of the Condor, The Manchurian Candidate, The X-Files, Capricorn One, The Divinci Code, Jack Reacher, and many others have all featured a person who had a hunch or inside information that something about an event was not right. They are immediately labeled as being paranoid or crazy. They then have an uphill battle with superiors and the public as they try to prove there was some kind of cover up by the higher powers. This concept makes for great movies but isn't usually applauded in real life.

There are some people who say conspiracy theories don't exist and refer to those who believe in them as tin foil hat wearing, delusional people. These are the people who quickly dismiss any theory and are quick to label those who disagree with them or question government as conspiracy theorists. They frequently say things like "the government is here to protect us, it would never do that" or "how could that many people be in on the secret together without someone finding out?"

On the other extreme there are some people who attribute almost everything that happens to conspiracies. Some people don't believe we landed on the moon. When there is a mass shooting they insist that it is a false flag and that the victims are government actors. These paranoid people don't trust anyone and are suspicious of everything and of all authority.

Neither of these two extremes give their cause much credibility. I find myself more in the middle. I don't consider myself a conspiracy theorist but I'm troubled by unanswered questions about 911. I believe in vaccines, but I 'm disturbed with certain aspects of the industry. I believe in government and law and order but I also have concerns about government overreach. I just don't care for the current trend of calling someone a conspiracy theorist as an attempt to silence them or make them look crazy.

So I guess what I'm trying to say is let's not be so fast to attribute every thing that happens to a behind the scenes secret organization that is out to enslave us. At the same time, let's not dismiss people's concerns they have about ulterior motives or consequences of things they see happening around us. If you wonder why people don't always trust their governments, just look at the history books and see what horrible things those in power have done to others through the ages.

Solving this issue once again comes back to being able to determine real truth, not just what most people or a biased media outlet may tell you. That is the ironic challenge of our day when there is more information available than ever before but we are not sure which sources to trust. 

On a lighter note, my boys have a Youtube channel where they do short comedy skits making fun of movie tropes. I wrote the following sketch for them about this subject.

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