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"Do I cringe when I see the Discovery Channel and I see Idaho State University, Jeff Meldrum? Yes, I do," Hackworth said. "He believes he's taken up the cause of people who have been shut out by the scientific community. He's lionized there. He's worshipped. He walks on water. It's embarrassing."
gets funny looks and the silent treatment from other scientists, and is not invited to share coffee with the other science professors
What a bunch of immature, arrogant mullet-heads.
"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed." Albert Einstein
I wasn’t going to say anything about the article on the work of Dr. Jeff Meldrum. Hey, you all know about it, as mentioned here at Cryptomundo and elsewhere. I was hoping that the tempst in the teapot would go away. But I decided to put to rest some thoughts I have had during the day on the mini-mess in my attempt to move on and get back to the real news.
It is the Saturday before a major midterm election in the USA. So what does a hare-brained writer decide to spent his time trying to mess up? The answer is Jeff Meldrum’s life, apparently. I find the reporter’s actual interest in Sasquatch only marginal.
I now have seen that there are about 200 versions of this story spread by the Associated Press around the world. Luckily the majority of the mass media and apparently the general public are more interested in sex scandals, bad Republicans, Iraq, and the forthcoming election than they are about dwelling on this unfortunate piece of journalism.
From Jeff Meldrum’s point of view, of course, this article is not what he expected. He gave a calm book-related interview to the AP reporter, and then the news writer used it as an opportunity to make some silly remarks about Meldrum’s tenure being overthrown. That part of the article is untrue, as Meldrum’s tenure is not at risk. But, hey, we all have grown to understand that sensationalized reportage is used to sell newspapers and most reporters have shallow background knowledge of cryptozoology.
At some level, someday, I knew this was bound to happen to Meldrum. Considering Dr. Grover Krantz is dead, Jeff was due, especially now that his well-researched book is out, for an academic-style lashing in public. (The physics prof who is quoted tried to do it to Meldrum during the recent conference in Idaho, but few listened.)
Sadly now, however, on a broader scale, the AP is spreading this poison. Amazingly, the various headlines, such as “Bigfoot studies render academic an outcast,” seem much worse than the facts. But will the impact be far-reaching? I doubt it.
Yesterday and today, the only topics the anchors on MSNBC, CNN, and Fox News have discussed are the election, the Haggard sex scandal, the election, Iraq, and the election. Not one reporter, whom I have heard, has mentioned Bigfoot or Meldrum, and thankfully, the way this story is written, it is not getting the attention it might in a slower news cycle.
In the end, all that most of the general public will remember are only a few points, including (1) somewhere a professor is conducting serious research on Bigfoot, (2) a couple nasty people at his university said nasty things about him, (3) one person at his university (who happens to be in charge) said something supportive, (4) the nice professor has written a new book, and (5) the papers are still talking about Sasquatch. “Readers” will have to read the whole article, but most will not, and those that are positively interested will be tempted to buy Meldrum’s book and skeptically look at what this reporter has to say.
Many of us who have lived and died in academia, however, understand that the environment can be fickle. If this press storm had happened at a time when people really would have been paying attention, Jeff could be in store for shaky times, in which he might have to rationalize his existence, just as Roy Mackal and Grover Krantz both had to do. Some of us without tenure, like me, have been quietly laid off.
But this article about Meldrum, I predict, will be less than a three-day wonder. The election news has and will overwhelm it.
Nevertheless, during this short confused time in Idaho, a word of encourage to Jeff, in the face of the usual media vortex of misplaced disinformation, to hang in there. My best wishes and thoughts of support go out to Jeff Meldrum and his family.
Originally posted by Valhall
With all due respect, there's a lot of scientists out there not following the scientific method and I don't see them getting black-balled. The only difference I see here is his pet theory is big, hairy, stinky and elusive while theirs is dark matter...or some other such band-aide on an intellectual hemorrhage.