Who Do You Believe?

* During his election campaign in 1976, Jimmy Carter revealed that he had seen a UFO at Leary, Georgia, in 1969, together with witnesses, prior to giving a speech at the local Lions Club. “It was the damnest thing I’ve seen,” he told reporters. “It was big, it was very bright, it changed colors, and it was about the size of the moon. We watched it for ten minutes, but none of us could figure out what it was. One thing for sure; I’ll never make fun of people who say they’ve seen unidentified objects in the sky.”

* Carter’s sighting has been ridiculed by skeptics such as Philip Klass and  Robert Sheaffer. While there appear to be legitimate grounds for disputing the date of the incident, Sheaffer’s verdict that the UFO was nothing more exotic than the planet Venus is not tenable. As a graduate in nuclear physics who served as a line officer on U.S. nuclear submarines, Carter would not have been fooled by anything so prosaic as Venus, and in any case he described the UFO as being about the same size as the Moon.

* “If I become President,” Carter vowed, ” I’ll make every piece of information this country has about UFO sightings available to the public and the scientists.” Although  President Carter did all he could to fulfill his election pledge, he was thwarted, and it is clear that NASA had a hand in blocking his attempts to re-open investigations. When Carter’s science advisor, Dr. Frank Press, wrote to NASA administrator Dr. Robert Frosch in February 1977 suggesting that NASA should become the “focal point for the UFO question,”. Dr. Frosch replied “that although he was prepared to continue responding to public enquiries, he proposed “NASA” take no steps to establish a research activity in this area or to convene a symposium on the subject.”

* In a letter from Colonel Charles Senn, chief of the Air Force Community Relations Division, to Lieutenant General Duward Crow of NASA, dated 1 September 1977, Colonel Senn made the following astonishing statement: “I sincerely hope that you are successful in preventing a reopening of UFO investigations.” So it is clear that NASA (as well as the Air Force and almost certainly the CIA and National Security) was anxious to ensure that the President’s election pledge remained unfulfilled.



* Which supports and barriers were in play?

* What were the dynamics?

* What, or who, won the Tug-of-War?

* Discuss the outcome with your friends and family.

* Use Post #4 as a reference for the dynamics, and relationships, between supports and barriers.