You’ve probably already heard about Jaycee Lee Dugard, the now 29 year old woman who’d been held kidnapped, raped repeatedly, and become a mother twice over the past eighteen years. It’s astounding that Miss Dugard has been found alive, I’m sure I speak for all of the New York City Skeptics when I say that we hope she will be able to move forward in her life, and that one day, maybe she’ll be able to attain some totems of normalcy. But, this is not the sympathy blog, this is the Gotham Skeptic, so we’re actually here to talk about Dayle Schear.
First off, Dayle Schear is a woman. I know that seems innocuous, but every time I see her name I get confused by the pronoun, so I guess I’m just writing it down to force myself to remember it. Thank you for your indulgence. More importantly, Ms. Schear is a Reno, NV psychic who has recently been claiming that eighteen years ago, she insisted that Jaycee Lee Dugard was still alive.
Let’s not go into the fact that Dugard was missing for 18 years. Let’s not go into just how vague and inane Schear’s predictions (according to every media outlet I’ve seen so far, she basically just said “Don’t give up hope”, said the kidnapping was “sexual” – <sarcasm> very precise </sarcasm> – and described a shitty looking place) were. Why not, you ask? Because that’s already starting to be done by the mainstream media. Even “The Examiner”, crackpot haven for every Bigfoot enthusiast and Psychic apologist is writing a wishy-washy article (The title calls her “Bragging Psych”ic and this is by a guy who thinks this crap is real… oy, he thinks it’s real…) which boils down to “Ms. Schear… No.” I’ve even seen some folks mention Shawn Hornbeck.
Dayle Schear has managed to do the impossible. She’s gotten MyFox to write an article (reprinted in over 20 cities) where over a third of the text is about Benjamin Radford (In case you don’t know, Benjamin Radford is the managing editor of “The Skeptical Inquirer and the author of the “Bad Science” blog – which you should know, by the way). The amazing thing about this article is that, even though the title is “Jaycee’s Mom Consulted Psychic”, there’s a sub-title of “But many argue psychics can’t help solve crimes.” When’s the last damn time we saw an article where there was a sub-heading stating that a lot of people say psychic’s are bunk?
I don’t want to overstress all this. What we’re looking at is token skepticism being made a little less token. But still, a small victory is a victory nonetheless. Even on the most generous article out there, “Psychic Predicted Jaycee’s Return” from KOLTV.com, almost all the comments are anti-psychic. I should mention that reading the article will probably just piss you off. It’s pretty much a free print add for Schear. But take a look at the comments and you’ll see that there’s a lot of people, even out in Reno Nevada, who are tired of the bullshit. Because you can’t defend what Dayle is saying. It’s just too damn ridiculous. “18 years ago, I said you shouldn’t give up hope.” Whoopeedoo. Your psychic powers are astounding.
It seems that people actually start thinking after 18 years. Folks out there are saying, “Damn, Schear. You’re taking credit? With only that?” This is beautiful. And it’s really unexpected. And it’s sort of something I always thought was impossible…
Dayle Schear has gotten the mainstream media to be a touch more skeptical! She’s clearly demonstrated a paranormal ability! Someone get Randi on the horn right now!!