“I’m not a conspiracy theorist. I’m an air force pilot. And based on my experience, the story we’ve been told about 9/11 doesn’t add up.”
That’s a powerful statement.
Because its framing shatters the programmed thinking that many Americans have been indoctrinated into via establishment media — that those who question the official 9/11 story are “wacky conspiracy theorists.”
Okay, let’s back up a step.
Here’s the context:
- The 9/11 Commission Report did not mention the collapse of World Trade Center Building 7 on September 11, 2001 — which was not hit by a plane but collapsed in a near-identical manner as did the two towers which were hit by planes.
- More than 1,500 architects, engineers, and scientists, including many more concerned and affected citizens, don’t believe the official 9/11 story, as the official report did not address the collapse of Building 7. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) later concluded that Building 7 collapsed due to office fires, but in their 15-minute documentary, the organization Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth explain why they are not convinced by this story.
- The establishment media, which is controlled by a handful of corporations, along with much of the populous (i.e., consumers of establishment media), deny and ridicule those who question the official story, labeling them as “conspiracy theorists.”
- The conspiracy theory lingo distorts any true discussion (yes, involving “experts” and Ph.D.’s on both sides) on the controversial issue of how exactly Building 7 fell (and managed to free fall in the process, as NIST admitted).
- The general public largely ignores the controversy, as they believe what they are told: “Anyone who questions the official report is a ‘conspiracy theorist,’ and thus irrelevant.”
The underlying assumption here is that conspiracy theorists are bad, stupid, crooked, profiteers, scammers, uneducated, ignorant, paranoid, crazies, nut jobs — irrelevant.
Social norms regarding 9/11
This underlying assumption serves as a social norm.
People think that all (or just most) educated, rational, qualified thinkers don’t question the official story , because the establishment media (read: corporatist agenda) tells them such or indirectly frames it as such through reporting.
Is it really so? I don’t know how many people in the U.S. question the official story, but it’s probably not as insignificant as the media would have us believe.
There are many experts and educated citizens who do challenge the official story. And that doesn’t make them any of the above negative labels (associated with the term “conspiracy theorist”).
“I’m not a conspiracy theorist”
The fine print in the lower left corner of the above ad reads:
“I’m Lieutenant Colonel David Gapp (Ret.), a 30-year Air Force veteran. I served as Chief of Master Air Attack Planning for Iraq and Afghanistan wars.”
Several other poster ads such as this one, by RememberBuilding7.org, read:
- “I’m not a conspiracy theorist. I’m a structural engineer.”
- “I’m not a conspiracy theorist. I’m a first responder.”
- “I’m not a conspiracy theorist. I’m a family member.”
- “I’m not a conspiracy theorist. I’m a father.”
What do each of these statements have in common?
They each break the “conspiracy theorist” stereotype.
They each re-humanize those individuals who question the official 9/11 story.
In the minds of many citizens, those who question the official story have already been dehumanized, viewed not as complex individuals who have reasons to form their own opinions contrary to government dictum, but rather, as those of another breed — “conspiracy theorist,” and thus, irrelevant.
The social norm is shattering due to the political activism leading up to, and encompassed by RememberBuilding7.org‘s 10th Anniversary Campaign for 9/11.
A smart campaign by RememberBuilding7.org
The more that people approach the topic of 9/11 without preexisting and dysfunctional biases about “conspiracy theorists,” the more they’ll be able to discuss the controversy surrounding the events of 9/11 with more critical thinking — with independent thinking.
These poster ads being put out by RememberBuilding7.org are very smart, in that they target one of the major sources of public disinformation regarding 9/11: the stealthy and pervasive social norms imposed by establishment media (and reinforced by academia).
Which again, is propped up by a handful of corporations.
The derogatory “conspiracy theorist” construct won’t hold (or be exploited) forever, and the 10th Anniversary Campaign for September 11th certainly deconstructs it.
What do you think?
Do you consider yourself a conspiracy theorist?
How do you define the term?
Are there other aspects of the official 9/11 story you’d like to discuss?
If you watch the forthcoming documentary by Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth (cosponsor of RememberBuilding7.org), Experts Speak Out, your views on what happened on 9/11 (and especially regarding Building 7) may be drastically impacted. I’ve ordered a copy, and look forward to having a critical discussion about the opinions presented in this documentary with my loved ones.