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Published October 18 2012

Benshoof: ‘X-Files’ actor says, yes, truth indeed out there

When I was young, I used to picture myself as FBI Special Agent Fox Mulder in the television show “The X-Files.”

“The truth is out there,” I’d echo after each episode ended, losing myself in complicated plots of the unknown, mysterious and often otherworldly.

It’s perhaps no coincidence then that when I worked at the East Otter Tail Focus newspaper in Perham, Minn., and now here at The Forum, I researched and wrote about local paranormal activity like the Hairy Man of Vergas, Minn., or the elusive Big Foot.

Thanks to the surplus of debunking information at our fingertips these days, it’s much harder to actually believe in those kinds of tales than when Mulder was busy crisscrossing the country in his vintage 1990s attire.

With that in mind, I called up Dean Haglund, a former “X-Files” actor who will be screening his documentary called “The Truth is Out There” at this weekend’s ValleyCon in Moorhead.

Haglund has plenty of experience in the kind of searching Mulder would have done. For his documentary, he traveled around the world asking various conspiracy theorists questions like, “What is truth?” and “How do you know you’ve found the truth?”

So, I posed the same question to Haglund: How can we still investigate the unknown when there’s so much out there telling us that things like the Hairy Man can’t, and don’t, exist?

Without getting too philosophical, Haglund told me that searching for the truth is still very much possible, as long as our investigation is a personal one.

Whether we’re investigating the existence of the Hairy Man of Vergas or whether redheads are indeed the offspring of aliens (trust me, that’s out there), our search needs to be our own and not anyone else’s, he says.

That’s because “it seems that there is no one singular truth” out there, he adds.

Some people believe they’ve stumbled onto something because of nothing more than a gut feeling, Haglund explains, while others take a different approach.

“Others equate it to a scientific equation, that truth can somehow be found through science,” he says.

Either way, the point is that if you (or I, for that matter) are suspicious that something’s not as it seems (redheads, I’m looking at you), there’s no reason that we shouldn’t stop being suspicious until our questions have been answered.

“Each and every person had their own version of the truth (in the movie),” Haglund says. “Which is sort of what you find: The truth is out there, but it’s different for everyone.”

Readers can reach Forum reporter Sam Benshoof at (701) 241-5535

If you go

What: ValleyCon’s screening of Dean Haglund’s “The Truth

is Out There”

When: 4 p.m. Saturday

Where: Hjemkomst Center, 202 1st Ave. N., Moorhead

Info: Passes range from $10 for daytime passes to $50 for a full ValleyCon weekend pass. Visit www.valleycon.com for more information.