We reported previously our cautious belief that Elvis Presley is still alive. Here we wish to examine a few of the implications of that staggering conclusion.
On the one hand, Elvis pulled off one of the greatest hoaxes in history, although he is by no means the first to do so. We believe the evidence purporting that legendary murderer Jesse James faked his death in 1882 is equally persuasive as Presley’s. Although Elvis’ disappearance wasn’t original, it was far more spectacular.
After all, Presley lived his life in a fish bowl made of magnifying glass where few people have endured closer scrutiny and adulation than he. Thus accomplishment of this feat in plain sight speaks volumes for Presley and his co-conspirators. It also raises the question of who was involved in orchestrating the faux death. Did CIA and other intelligence forces materially contribute or assist in this virtuoso act, or was this legerdemain largely a Pressley virtuoso act? If the deception were all Presley’s, I certify him to be a near genius.
The other important implication of the faked death is the exposure of the limitations of our senses. Presley was worshipped as a demi-god whom people felt they knew because they experienced him through the mediation of the entertainment, publicity, and news institutions which played on people’s desires to associate with the fame, power, and success belonging to the incomparable Presley.
Because he touched them as they had never been touched before, his fans felt they knew him, and consequently could know whether he was alive or not. But these very media which made Elvis translucent were the very media which provided enough opacity to allow him to escape before our very eyes.
Since people felt that they knew him, and it was through their minds acquiescing to the aforementioned media, they accepted that the event they witnessed was a genuine depiction of a fallen hero’s last moments above ground.
But if the DNA findings are reliable, it is impossible – reminiscent of Grouch Marx’s famous line about who was buried in Grant’s tomb – that the coffin in Presley’s grave contains the remains of the King of Rock and Roll. As such, people were fooled by the same media they trusted implicitly.
Of course one can allow a certain lenience toward those believing a lie due to a deliberate deception, but nonetheless believing that Elvis is dead is a colossal error of perception and possibly judgment. And I, like most of the world, believed that he died on August 16, 1977.
The other matter so disturbing about Elvis’ disappearance is that he felt compelled to disappear. What price fame? His fans were into themselves that they could not give their idol peace of mind. It is also likely that Presley’s famous hard living took its toll on his psyche and physiology – again assuming that the tales of his wild life are indeed true. Of course endogenous factors unrelated to his fame could have precipitated the need to get out of Dodge.
But it wasn’t just his fans who threatened him. Dr Hinton tells of other threats to Presley which I assume were derivative of his fame.
Could Elvis come back to the world today – assuming that he is still alive after July 2008? Sadly, I don’t think he could. Many of his fans would be outraged that he deprived them of so much joy by disappearing so abruptly while others would be ecstatic that he is back. His non-fans would probably be furious that he duped them, perhaps endangering his life for sure.
But did he really dupe them or did the media and the people dupe themselves? And so we get to the matter of blaming the victim. But in a caveat emptor world, I find it difficult to be too hard on Elvis given the many mitigating circumstances surrounding his need to disappear.
I don’t think that we have excavated all of the implications of Elvis’ non-death, but I wish him peace in the valley of his solace.
Copyright 2012 Tony Bonn. All rights reserved.