Have you wholeheartedly embraced our technological age or are you more likely to feel mistrustful of modernity? Do you happily splash your cash on a new mobile and its numberless Nokia accessories or do you only own one under duress and for the express purpose of emergencies only?
Perhaps you cast a guarded glance at a mobile phone mast, believing it not only to be something of an eyesore on your local environment, but also the harbinger of health hazards? In fact, you wouldn’t be alone in feeling that something fishy may be afoot, as many individuals and campaigners believe that the electrical field surrounding a mast can cause something known as electromagnetic hypersensitivity. The symptoms of this syndrome include fatigue, headaches, burning sensations and skin problems.
To add insult to your inkling, some recent government-funded research, looking into the potential dangers of exposure to signals from masts, has proclaimed that they are in fact harmless. Any claims of ill-health were pretty perfunctorily dismissed as being part and parcel of the placebo effect. While we’re able to turn off our mobile phone, we’re unable to do so to a mast. Hence the foreboding felt by many and particularly keenly by those who are in close proximity to one.
Could denials of the dangers attributed to mobile phone masts give rise to another conspiracy theory? Such theories have been proposed to explain numerous situations, with even the traumatic events of 9/11 coming under scrutiny. Many people disagree with the official account that the attacks were perpetrated solely by al-Qaeda. Furthermore, some believe the collapse of the Twin Towers and the World Trade Center was the result of a controlled demolition: one suggested motive for which was to create a justification for the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq.
While some may see these suggestions as a slur to the memory of those who suffered as a result of this act, the fact remains that conspiracy theories always circulate around major news stories and unexpected, catastrophic acts such as this.
Another theory of our time involves the alleged secret committee of scientists and government officials that was formed to investigate the recovery of a UFO north of Roswell, New Mexico. The substance of this theory was denied by the US government and military. What’s interesting is that these theories are centric to the United States. Perhaps Henry James’ words offer one possible explanation:
“It is, I think, an indisputable fact that Americans are, as Americans, the most self-conscious people in the world, and the most addicted to the belief that the other nations of the earth are in a conspiracy to under value them.”