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Radford Replies To Chupacabras Theory Critics

Posted by: Loren Coleman on May 28th, 2010

“I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig, you get dirty; and besides, the pig likes it.” ~ George Bernard Shaw.

Sometimes, there are more than two sides to every issue. In the case of the Chupacabras melodrama, that certainly seems to be the case.

If you recall, here at Cryptomundo, Ben Radford’s new theory was outlined. Basically, it regards his sense that the 1995 wave of Chupacabras sightings is linked to the movie Species’ shape-shifting humanoid creature, Sil, which was played by Natasha Henstridge.

Radford’s main evidence, as far as is known right now, was eyewitness interviews he found in Chupacabras investigator Scott Corrales’ 1997 book, Chupacabras and Other Mysteries.

In reply to the summary of Radford’s theory, Corrales, as did others, shared some criticisms of what Radford theorized, earlier, in the comments section of that previous posting.

Corrales’ comment is reproduced here, in full:

As you are well aware, I try to keep away from all these debates, but to pin the entire narrative of the chupacabras (yes, with an “s’) on a single set of witnesses (Ms. Tolentino and her husband) is to deny the hundreds of eyewitness accounts from all over Puerto Rico at the time that described the same creature. Not a dog, not a feral ape, not “a lion” as a caller to one of the late-night show was moved to say: it was an entity as drawn by Jorge Martín based on the Tolentino account, issuing a very strong chemical odor, and with very curious physical properties. In retrospect, the Sanchez eyewitness account — the man who struck the creature with a machete to no effect — stands out as the most realistic and sobering. This was a religious man who wanted no part of the experience, and whose fellow church members broke into loud song to interfere with the interview. Skeptics overlook the fact that the most dramatic manifestations of the creature occurred not in Puerto Rico or Mexico or indeed anywhere in the Caribbean basin, but in Brazil and later on in Chile. Whether its an unknown physical creature or a paranormal “visitor”, the Chupacabras transcends the pages of any single book.

Ben Radford has now replied. He emails:

I appreciate Loren’s comments, and the posts by those here. (I’m a little late to this thread, having been away at conferences for 10 days).

According to my reading of the interview, Tolentino clearly said she saw the film before she saw the chupacabra creature. I do not suggest that every single sighting was spawned by her report, but it is widely accepted that hers was the original, most complete, and most influential chupa sighting on record.

As for Scott’s comments, I was surprised to read his statement about “hundreds of eyewitness accounts from all over Puerto Rico at the time that described the same creature.” I have read his book several times, and I am at a loss to find these “hundreds” of identical descriptions he mentions. I actually tried to interview Scott, but he refused to speak to me about the chupacabra for my book. If he has records of these hundreds of eyewitness reports that describe a creature identical to that which Tolentino described at the time, I would very much appreciate being granted access to those.

Scott is not interested in continuing with, or even being in a debate with Ben. He merely shared the insight in a private overnight email with me that the outpouring of eyewitness accounts in P.R. newspapers, radio shows, and television news programs is part of the record. He also mentioned something about pigs and wrestling.

About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013.


One Response to “Radford Replies To Chupacabras Theory Critics”

  1. Benjamin Radford responds:

    I am as usual pleased to read a new posting from MEC (My Esteemed Colleague) Loren…

    I have to admit I am slightly puzzled by the tone I’m reading here; If I understand the quote that Scott Corrales cites regarding wrestling pigs, I would be the dirty swine in this analogy…

    I would never suggest that a fellow cryptozoology researcher was a swine, or dirty, or that merely discussing or sharing information with him or her would by implication make me dirty. I have nothing but respect for others who, like myself, are sincerely trying to understand cryptozoological phenomena–even those I may disagree with. I think ultimately we are all on the same side, and I operate in the spirit of cooperation instead of competition.

    My query was not an attack on Mr. Corrales, but merely a polite request for some evidence or proof of the “hundreds” of identical, contemporaneous eyewitness sightings that he claims were made at the same time as Tolentino’s sighting, as they do not seem to appear in his book Chupacabras and Other Mysteries.

    As a professional writer and researcher, I make my files and research available to anyone who asks to see it; that is a basic tenet of the scientific process. Hoarding information or refusing to cooperate with other legitimate researchers is both anti-scientific and counter-productive. If Corrales chooses not to cooperate with me or share his evidence that is certainly his right and I respect that, but I would hope he would not then criticize me for not knowing information he has but refuses to divulge!

    “Scott is not interested in continuing with, or even being in a debate with Ben.”



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