Much More Respect for the Dead

     I am on a number of paranormal facebook groups who post stories, pictures, recordings, and opinions, many, many opinions. Recently, someone posted a question that caught my attention. They asked, "Does anyone know if the site of the twin towers / 911 has been investigated? If not, I'd really like to investigate it. I hear that the wind howls around the site."
     I read all of the replies. In short, almost everyone said the same thing. "It is too soon, it would be highly disrespectful of those who died, it would be wrong." I agree with this sentiment. Gound zero should never be investigated. Then, I gave this some thought. I live near Gettysburg and I have investigated on the battlefield many times, as well as most of the haunted locations in town. So, what, exactly, is the difference between investigating at the site of one of the worst, bloodiest battles of the Civil War and investigating Ground Zero, NYC? The only difference is time. The Civil War happened over 150 years ago. 911 nineteen years ago. So is it time that allows us to be, dare I say it, disrespectful of the dead?

     God Forbid.

     I have noticed a difference in paranormal groups lately. The very large, nearly exclusively online groups do not take investigating the paranormal seriously. To many of them, who shall remain nameless, you know who you are, it is a fun hobby, a pastime filled with fun people, exciting experiences, scary experiences, and, most importantly, FUN! Yes, Fun. Fun is the priority, fun is the expected result. It's what many enthusiasts pay good money for, the exciting, blood pumping, Run dude, Run! experience at a haunted location.

     I have written about this before. (Read "One or the Other, Jan 1, 2020, "Respect for the Dead" 09/22/2019, Respect for the Battlefields of Gettysburg, June 22, 2013) But, I suddenly realized that, if investigating Ground Zero was highly disrespectful of the dead, then isn't all investigating of battlefields where people died, also disrespectful? And, if that is also highly disrespectful, isn't it also highly disrespectful to investigate all locations where the dead might haunt? Shouldn't we all be highly respectful of all the dead? Isn't the "hobby" of paranormal investigating a very, very serious, somber, sobering endeavor? Isn't every person who has passed over their mortal coil due respect? Can we ever know in whose presence we are? Shouldn't we always be, in every circumstance, extremely respectful of the dead? Would you want a team of fun-seeking enthusiasts standing over your grandfather's grave, asking him innane questions? Having "fun"?

I think it's time many groups and individuals, many TV shows and paranormal tours, rethink what they are doing. This is serious. This is, literally, about someone's life, and someone's death.
They are owed your respect.

Here is an excerpt from one of my articles. Food for thought:

How ironic. Really? You don't see the irony? You are the problem. Your teams, your ghost hunting on sacred grounds, your gathering of evidence while standing atop the bodies of the dead, harassing them with your endless questions and making demands to talk to us, to give us a sign, to let us see a manifestation of your presence. I have done this myself. I am as guilty as the rest of you. I have gone walking the battlefield, camera and recorder and EMF meter in hand, hoping and begging and provoking for some manifestation, some evidence that the war dead walk these hallowed grounds and want to perform for me. I want to capture them, hold onto them, hear them, feel them, see them, and make them prove themselves.

The paranormal amusement park ride to the other side. No refunds. No returns.

There may be a price to pay someday for some of us who have disrespected the dead, dishonored their memory, had fun at their expense. I don't know.

I just don't know.


InvestigatorK said…
I too have been at this for many years and have been guilty as anyone of this in the distant past. However, over time, and a lot of added experience, much had become apparent in the regards to respect of the dead. I saw multitudes of self proclaimed investigators, both on and off TV, claiming respect for the dead. All the while, stomping on their realm, as if it were an a amusement park. Some literally and I knew my approach and attitude had to change. At first not as fun but over time, much more rewarding.

Now, don't get me wrong. I totally understand the thirst for knowledge, the after life being the hardest to understand and it even being fun to Ghost Hunt! However, any real investigator knows that, an investigation is the search for the truth, regardless of what that truth is. There are rules, protocols and a systematic approach to responsible investigating. None of which are done by the people on TV. Nor most of the Ghost Hunters that are out there today and there are conservatively tens of thousands.

I guess with all the unknowns doing TV that people think they will just pick, Joe Schmoe and give him a show! lol. I can assure anyone thinking that, it isn't true. Also those who have the long running shows were not Ghost Hunters before the show. If you get off Facebook and do some research. You will find that all of them were looking to break into TV and the Ghost Hunting avenue was the easiest.

Anyway, this blog needs to be shared for all to see. I added it to my Facebook page. I wonder how people will receive it and if they will take heed?
Great article and needs to be said to many!
However, not to all. I may be mistaken, but there feels like a 'one size fits all' concept. We greatly respect the deceased and rather than 'ghost hunting thrill seekers', we instead attempt to communicate to honor their memory and ask if they need assistance. Our mediums and equipment help in that area.
Mostly we go into private homes when residents call us petrified about what is happening. After ruling out natural causes (and often there are many), we begin to systematically research possible unnatural or supernatural sources. No one's an expert, but we have 20 years experience as a group. We've learned, failed, tried, researched, educated - all with 'respect' as our end game. :)
InvestigatorK said…
I guess I will just have to bite my tongue and hope I don't offend but people need to stop and take a hard look at the 2 sides of the field and should make a choice. Because things will never change, as long as there are no methods, protocols or rules put into place and followed by all. There must be a standard for the serious and not ghost hunting rules.

Protocol : a system of rules that explain the correct conduct and procedures to be followed in formal situations.

Step 1- Question.
Step 2-Research.
Step 3-Hypothesis.
Step 4-Experiment.
Step 5-Observations.
Step 6-Results/Conclusion.

Rules: one of a set of explicit or understood regulations or principles governing conduct within a particular activity or sphere.

Unless everyone follows these, to the T, nothing done, amounts to a hill of beans. Basically, anything else is just a game or hobby for the Ghost Hunter.

Which is totally fine, if the person sees themselves as a ghost hunter. However, once someone places Investigator in their title, it's a whole new ball game, with responsibilities and expected results.

I DVR'd the Warren show. I watched the first 3 minutes and had to turn it off. They and those like them, are why the field is what it is today and that is not a good thing.

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