So let’s see what Vieira has to say.
I have been waiting for one of the defenders of the status quo to take aim at my efforts and first up to bat is Jason Colavito. Mr. Colavito is a professional skeptic who writes for Skeptic Magazine and operates along the lines of Ken Feder and Stephen Williams. An individual on a crusade to save the world from bad science.
However, the professional skeptic makes no attempt to evaluate evidence in an open minded fashion, trying to explain anomalies, rather chooses to enter the debate with a preconceived and unbending view of reality based on academic consensus and other filtering mechanisms.
Vieira, however, wants these to be anomalous—why I’m not sure. If we assume they are somehow anomalies, it implies that these bones are not Native American, and then we get to the heart of the matter: Such claims represent an attempt to carve out room for Biblical Nephilim, Atlanteans, lost white races, and other such imaginary entries in the canon of “true” discoverers of North America. But if we play along and pretend these bones are somehow proof of superhuman visitors from the Aryan home world or remnants of the Great Flood or whatever he thinks they are, where do we find the evidence?
These sources include The New York Times, The Washington Post, LA Times, Scientific American, American Antiquarian, Popular Science, hundreds of town and county histories, archaeological bulletins, hundreds of newspapers and finally the Smithsonian's own ethnology reports. […] Do you think if the local newspaper were reporting a fake story about a giant human skeleton being found on the property of a prominent citizen that there would not be a huge backlash?
- Hans Pfall flies a hot air balloon to the moon (E. A. Poe, Southern Literary Messenger, 1835)
- A race of winged bat-men had a well-developed civilization on the moon. (NY Sun, 1835)
- A hot air balloon sailed across the Atlantic in 1844 (NY Sun, 1844)
- A Biblical “giant” was found in Cardiff, NY (most major papers, 1869)
- 100,000 pygmy human skeletons were found in a Tennessee cave (NY Times, 1874)
- Pre-Bigfoot “wild man” menaced Winsted, Connecticut (several NYC papers, 1895)
- Wooly mammoths are alive in Alaska (McClure’s, 1899)
As Mark Twain pointed out in creating his “A Petrified Man” hoax of 1861, stories of bizarre skeletons, petrified corpses, and other ancient anomalies were both wildly popular in regional newspapers and completely false. Using real (or realistic) names was part of the “fun” of Victorian journalism, which was closer to entertainment than the mid-twentieth century “objective” model we unconsciously assume is and has always been journalism’s goal. But again: 6 or 7 foot skeletons aren’t really “anomalous,” or “giants.”
It's odd we never hear the skeptics world view. We never hear the skeptic trying to explain an anomaly. Never will you hear an attempt at a logical explanation for these reports. So, over a thousand reports from all over the country, from many respected publications, from respected historians, archaeologists and anthropologists and spanning a 150 year period are all hoaxes and mastodon bones. Childish.
But here’s the kicker:
Colavito drops words and phrases like "extant" and "prima facie" like he is going to intellectually bully someone around. This overcompensating and arrogant behavior is as transparent as Saran Wrap. It smacks of a freshman writing student trying to pad an essay in a test he didn't study for. So in conclusion, for Mr. Colavito or any other troll who would attempt to offhandedly dismiss these 1000+ reports, before I answer any of your questions answer mine. Explain how over one thousand individual unique reports of giant human skeletons, giant skulls and jawbones found their way into all of these respected publications. Show your math.
So plainspoken, in fact, is Jim Vieira that his TEDx Talk on giants and (sigh) the Smithsonian conspiracy to hide them had to be removed from TED’s YouTube channel for failure to adhere to basic levels of scientific accuracy. Here’s a few choice problems with Vieira’s speech, according to TED:
At 4:05 — You claim: “The moundbuilders who built all kinds of structures.” All evidence for the moundbuilders’ architecture suggests that they built with sod packets and wood.
At 9:15 — You share newspaper clippings from the 19th century, including quotes from Abraham Lincoln, and claim they are evidence of giants. In fact, as one of our experts writes, “Skeletal hoaxes were common in the 19th century (e.g., Piltdown Man, the Cardiff Giant, and Barnum & Bailey Fiji mermaids [now at Harvard's Peabody Museum]). If (and this is a big if) the 8-foot skeleton is real, it could be a case of medical gigantism, but it is more likely a case of exaggeration.”
At 12:49 — “Bones crumbled away because they weren’t mummified.” Skeletal preservation and mummification are unrelated processes. Plenty of skeletons survive in New England, and the disappearance of any and all skeletons that could lend evidence to these claims today is highly suspect.
That’s the trouble with avoiding the type of language needed to make points clear; you end up with broad and unsubstantiated claims that don’t make sense. But when you are out to prove Edgar Cayce was right about Atlantis and ancient civilizations, you will not let anything get in your way.