Wednesday, 1 May 2013

In Praise of Stephen Bassett and the Citizen Hearing on Disclosure

Driven: Political activist Stephen Bassett
By Robbie Graham
Between April 29 and May 3, up to forty researchers and military/government witnesses will testify to the reality of the UFO phenomenon and extraterrestrial visitation before former members of the United States Congress and Senate. This is the Citizen Hearing on Disclosure. It is the brainchild of political activist Stephen Bassett.
As a researcher with a pro-ETH (Extraterrestrial Hypothesis) stance, I have always respected and supported Bassett’s work. His White House ‘We the People’ petitions were widely criticised by pundits in the UFO community, either for failing to bring about UFO Disclosure, or on the grounds that Disclosure is simply unachievable through public pressure. Such criticisms are myopic and defeatist.
In fact, Disclosure was never an immediate objective for Bassett’s White House petitions. His petitioning was successful in its elicitation of an historic response from the Obama Administration on the UFO/ET issue, for capturing the attention of international news media, and, in turn, for encouraging many people outside of the insular UFO community to consider the reality and implications of official UFO secrecy.
Bassett’s goal is to bring about Disclosure not through one explosive revolutionary act, but through a continuing series of high-profile but always respectful actions –be they in the form of petitions or press conferences – which serve constantly to remind those few in the corridors of power who hold the key to UFO secrecy that the public, although more often than not distracted by the trappings of everyday life and the inanities of modern culture, are ever savvy to the machinations of their ‘Truth Embargo’, and that our deep desire for Disclosure (in one form or another) grows stronger with each passing year. It’s a constant call for accountability and an essential reminder from the public to the UFO policy makers: “We’re watching you, and we’re waiting.”
Whether or not you agree with Bassett’s particular brand of UFO activism, whether or not you like the witnesses he presents at his press conferences or if you approve of the specific phrasing of his petitions, there can be no denying that his efforts in this field have raised popular awareness of the UFO/ET issue considerably in the 21st Century. Indeed, I would argue that Bassett has done more than any of his detractors in UFOlogy and Exopolitics – perhaps more than anyone ever – to directly encourage the mainstream media to more thoughtfully engage with one of history’s most important and misunderstood subjects. If he has not always been entirely successfully in this endeavour, it is not for lack of trying. And he has tried at his own considerable financial cost.
Stephen Bassett is a driven man. Whether he succeeds in ending the Truth Embargo remains to be seen, but he will never give up. I’m not a saluting kinda guy. But, Steve Bassett, I salute you.