Saturday, October 19, 2013


Although I try for the most part to not use this forum as an outlet for my feelings and complaints, I do need to make a short editorial statement at this time on many responses I have received on my recent series of postings debunking the theories of Barry Fell. Of course, the first point that I feel needs mentioning is that most of the comments, and all of the most insulting, came from Anonymous. Either there is a person out there named Anonymous who thinks that repeated attacks and insults are the proper path to productive discourse, or there are lots of people named Anonymous who would rather insult than comment. In any case they have missed the point almost entirely.

While I have never tried to hide the fact that I disagreed totally with Barry Fell, I was not attacking the theories of diffusionists and epigraphers who share some of his conclusions. My comments in each and every case were intended to attack his verifiable falsification of data, and the lack of scientific method in those conclusions. I disagree with other diffusionists and epigraphers in interpretations of the origin of much rock art they discuss, but that does not mean that I do not believe that they have something to add to the discussion. Until more traditional interpretation methods can answer their questions they have a right to their theories. Indeed, I think that in many instances this leavens the discussion and keeps our subject from being too dry and ossified.

So here is the summation; yes, I attacked Dr. Fell for lying and falsifying data; no, I have never attacked or even much criticized other people who share some of his theories unless they, of course, share his unscientific practices. The practice of fraud and deception is neither science, anthropology, archaeology, or art history, it is just cheating. So, Anonymous, I am sorry if my statements seemed to be an attack on your beliefs. I meant them to be an attack on unethical practices in the practice of our field of interest, and I expect to stand behind them. Ethical behavior leaves no room for such practices, and if we are not to be ethical we should not take public positions. Thank you.

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