January 25, 2018

HAGOPIAN | Not a Conspiracy Theory, a Theory on Conspiracies

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The “erroneous” missile warning in Hawaii was a government cover-up. I don’t think there was an incoming nuke. I think the powers-that-be wanted some data on how people would handle an imminent nuclear crisis.

Consider the location of the incident. Hawaii is the most isolated state in the union, which significantly lowered the risk for national panic. And its relatively tiny population presumably led to a smaller potential for casualties. If the warning message truly was a random occurrence, what are the odds that it would occur in the state with ideal conditions for such an experiment?

And what about the emergency management employee who “pushed the wrong button” and caused the panic? First of all, I’d imagine that sending out a nuclear missile warning involves a few checks and balances. Second of all, the guy wasn’t fired. He was reassigned. If there are any fireable offenses within the emergency management agency, one would think that this would be it. It’s the equivalent of, say, an executive at Proctor and Gamble force-feeding Tide Pods to children. I call bullshit. The higher-ups got some workaday ham-and-egger stooge to do their dirty work for them, and then they shunted him sideways to throw the public off the trail. Wake up people.

I haven’t been shy about voicing this opinion, and I’ve received nothing but scorn and derision for doing so. And despite the fact that I’m probably wrong, I don’t think my viewpoint deserves to be mocked. Conspiracy theories get a bad rap, as I demonstrated somewhat by falling into satire in the last paragraph. (Digression: anyone writing to convince should never pass up at opportunity for humor. It’s the most powerful tool in your arsenal.)  I for one consider conspiracy theorizing to be a noble pursuit. In the ’50s and ’60s, the US government imposed mass sterilization policies in Puerto Rico. And a short while later, they strong-armed their way out of a genocide charge in the ICJ case of Yugoslavia v. United States of America. A person informed of these events who had previously been ignorant of them, might very well view them as ludicrous conspiracy theories. But they happened.

Independent of the Hawaiian missile fiasco, I would merely point out that the US government has earned all the skepticism it is met with. All governments have, and millennials are slowly but surely getting it. Look at the new Star Wars movie: it’s very clearly and deliberately trying to be a Star Wars for a new generation. The leader of the bad guys is a sympathetic character, the “old master” is a disillusioned fainéant, and the rich weapons dealers sell arms to both sides. Look also at the current NFL season: talk of “fixed” games and “paid off” referees is on people’s tongues with a frequency that was unheard of when Joe Montana played quarterback. We’re losing faith in the system and it’s music to my ears.

Until there’s an erroneous missile warning, and everyone is suddenly ready to give the system the benefit of the doubt. Until it’s time to address the actions of Antifa, and we condemn them as dangerous radicals. If the system is as fucked as everyone seems to think it is, we should be rebelling with force. Wake up people.

We are the generation that has to save the world. We have the knowledge and the technology to facilitate meaningful communication, we face enough hardship to provide motivation, but we’re no closer to the French revolution then we were ten years ago. It’s maddening. Liberals waste their time on infighting, tone-policing and increasingly complicated language rules instead of taking to the streets. Why? Because it’s safe. Because the alternative would force us to face with sober senses the real conditions of life and our relations with our kind. The least we could do is come up with a few more good conspiracy theories.
Ara Hagopian is a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences. He can be reached at ahagopian@cornellsun.com. The Whiny Liberal appears alternate Fridays this semester.