The Courage to Look into the Eyes of a Reptilian

By Maurizio Bisogno

Conspiracy theories are innumerable or almost. This field is highly productive, and every theory always hides “something” it does not say. In essence, we can say that there are conspirators, conspiracy theorists and critics of the aforementioned approaches. The foremost common criticism of conspiracy theories perhaps is that which associates them with a collapse of rationalism. This will drag us all to the underside of the most bizarre irrationalism which may end any rational consensus on how the planet on which we live works. For critics of this type we’d be within the presence of an outbreak of gullible thinkers that threatens the entire progress made by Reason and produced by the Enlightenment. Or the “plotters” are described as a fashionable version of opium for peoples of Marxian memory that would be provoking a shameful retreat of reason in the face of ideal and real issues. It’s like there’s a real terrorist campaign against Enlightenment rationalism. It seems that a war is in place again, that between light and night, between reason and irrational obscurantism. But where does this anti-Enlightenment way of thinking, which, at the same time, seem to be based precisely on a certain use of “reasonableness” lie? Conspiracy theorists seem to attack reason with the tools of reason itself, at least on the surface, in fact, they apply scepticism and the spirit of independent research. But critics of conspiracy theories themselves use a methodology similar to those who intend to criticize, for example, when making use of catastrophic predictions alternatives to those of the former. It is as if conspiracy theorists produced in their critics a negative duplicate, an upside-down mirror of themselves. The point is that, although often, the truth about how things happened and what happens is often clearly expressed, do we feel willing to describe, by definition, as follies all conspiracy theories?

The metamorphosis of Reptilians

Reptilians would be a race of extra-terrestrials infiltrated in command posts or among the most influential people in all sectors of power (politics, economy, culture, and the entertainment world). Conspiracists hold them responsible for the spread of drugs, sexual perversions, murderous acts against schools and hospitals, etc. They also get a huge interest in the US and Europe first only through the Internet, but now also in the dominant media.

The discourse about the Reptilians is exemplary in the general structure of a conspiracy argument. In fact, many of the accusations made against world leaders or celebrities are not substantiated by evidence, assuming that it is not up to them to prove the truth of the accusations they make, but it is up to the accused to prove that those accusations are false, overturning the maximum semper necessitas probandi incumbit ei qui agit and that is that it is the accuser who must provide the evidence of the accusation. The demystifier of the thesis put forward by the reptilian faces the paradox that precisely because it tries to deny the theory of reptilians it somehow establishes its truth if we accept the epistemic position described above. It should be noted that conspiracy theories that suppose the existence of reptiles infiltrated among humans create a social and cultural phenomenon for the number of supporters, the strong reaction of the demystifying of this theory, the amount of those who start to ridicule them and even for the existence of “serious” analyses by scholars of the academic way. Something is created that did not exist before: the world of culture, online and non-online media, is populated with new fears, suspicions, paranoia that can also be genuine but that are often tinged with irony and ridicule.

Conspiracies and plots are not an invention of conspiracists.

Where do those involved in conspiracy theories come from, what is their cultural background? Well, among them we find philosophers, politicians, historians, media and communication scholars, literary critics and psychologists. This creates a whole set of concepts that then form a new cultural landscape with new genres but also new filters of reality. Said en passant, there is a certain use of improper language in the normally balanced language of academics who deal with the various conspiracy theories: “a lot of bullshit”, “only shit”, “in the world there is also shit”, “shit does not happen, it is men who do it”.

They all make an important distinction: there is conspiracy and conspiracy theory. The attitude to conspiracy is one of condemnation: even if, like shit, de facto conspiracies happen, they are subjected to an ethical, political and social judgment that makes them unacceptable. On the other hand, the elaboration of theories about conspiracy seems to be a rational element and one of social responsibility.

The question now becomes: is it possible to draw a line between conspiracy theories that are reasonable, rational, socially and politically responsible by those theories of the “reptilian conspiracies” type?