Monday, September 19, 2005

'Shut Up, We Don't Want To Hear You, You Freak.'

UFO enthusiast shares his beliefs San Leandro man puts aliens in public eye

By Michelle Beaver
The Daily Review
9-18-05

     NUMEROUS times a year for the last decade, one man has stolen the show during U.S. Congressman Pete Stark's San Leandro town hall meetings.

     And it's not Pete Stark.

     The routine is the same each time. Anyone who wants to comment is assigned a random number. Stark, D-Fremont, selects the numbers one by one, and eventually happens upon a UFO enthusiast who tries to convince the crowd that aliens are on Earth.

     William Roderick of San Leandro is wild about UFOs.

     The 39-year-old is convinced that if people are not warned of potential space perils, they will not be able to defend themselves.

     "I go to Pete Stark's meetings to let people know that the Star Wars program designed in the 1970s exists only because we have hostile aliens that come to the planet every day and stuff," Roderick said, "and our government is trying to combat them."

     Roderick's system of beliefs mixes what he calls "UFO-ology" with Christianity.

     Some meeting regulars smile when they see the eccentric man with shoulder-length curly black hair and baseball cap. Others grimace. Stark is courteous.

     During a meeting last week, the congressman amiably interrupted Roderick's speech about the current administration's UFO deception and asked, "Are you going to vote to get Bush and the Republicans out?"

     Roderick paused.

     "Yes," he said.

     "That's what I need to hear," Stark said, laughing kindly. With that, he proceeded to the next subject and Roderick sat down.

     Roderick wanted to say more but was pleased overall that he got to share his message again.

     "That day I did what I had to do," Roderick said. "It's good to get people prepared for the unknown and stuff. I'd say yes, Pete Stark is fair in his manners. At least he shows a little interest and support. He's not like all the people who ostracize me."

     Mean people: one of Rodericks's many problems. This life has not been easy for him.

     "I'm mostly disturbed and stuff by people saying, 'Shut up, we don't want to hear you, you freak.' That would bother anyone," Roderick said. "You'd be offended too. We have the right as human beings to share our opinions."

     Roderick's beliefs are based on the Bible, UFO research and most of all, a UFO video that he says aired on Channel 44 in the late 1990s. He's watched it 15 times.

     "I believe I have enough substantial information that I've gathered since my youth to give people tangible answers, if they'll let me," Roderick said. "There are a lot of people who study this topic but when we tell the truth, we're looked at like we're nut jobs."

     Roderick is extremely creative, funny and intelligent, but was placed in special education classes his whole life. He has a severe mental disorder that he does not want disclosed, and he becomes frustrated when people think his belief in extraterrestials is the result of his illness.

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