You never know what you are going to get. And that can lead to some very scary newspaper headlines.
In order to help prevent the "what can go wrong, will" scenario, group leaders should consider doing criminal background checks on all incoming members, as well as current ones.
With the paranormal such the craze these days, everyone wants to be a part of it, including criminals. But these delinquents may be more interested in using the paranormal as a springboard to commit all sorts of crimes from burglary and theft to rape and child molestation. There probably isn't anything they won't do.
Homeowners and businesses are unwittingly allowing these unverified groups into their homes to investigate while at the same time lowering their protective guard. And frighteningly, without much cause for concern.
The most likely reason for this is that these naive folks see Paranormal investigators on TV that are professional, friendly and well-intentioned, only out to find the truth or solve the mystery behind the dilemma. Heroes if you will.
But if you liken the paranormal hero image to the paramedic hero image you may get some real chills down your spine.
People allow paramedics into their homes because, one, they called them for help, and two, there is the universal belief that medical responders are professional, honest and only there to help, not hurt. And while this is true most of the time, it is not always the case.
Now imagine paranormal investigators.
They too are getting called into homes and businesses to help. And laymen also buy into the universal belief that these people are professional, honest and only there to help. Yet, while paramedics go through extensive background checks and training, paranormal investigators do not.
And if there are some bad apples in paramedicine despite all the protective measures that have been put in place, wouldn't it be safe to say there will also be some in the paranormal field, and most likely a few orchards full.
In lieu of a government or professional agency scrutinizing and certifying paranormal teams and members, the burden falls squarely onto the lap of paranormal group leaders.
Group leaders must try to ensure that the people in their groups are of good character and void of criminal backgrounds.
The obvious pitfall here is what about the group leaders.
Clearly, at some point in time, an organization needs to be put into place, government or private, that background checks all investigators before allowing them the ability to enter homes. Perhaps a permit from a government or professional agency that extends the privilege to investigate but only after a process that helps ensures the integrity of the investigators. That issue needs to be explored in greater detail.
Case in point. As reported in an earlier article, Robert Belford, and his Exposing Paranormal Posers site, exposed a team in Tennessee that had dangerous criminal backgrounds. And the kicker was that their leader was a convicted child molester.
Until something is done though, the homeowner or business is putting themselves at grave risk, not from their uninvited presumed paranormal intruders but from those they willingly allow through their doors to "help" them.
Although it is not hardly enough, group leaders background checking their members is the best course of action at this point until more safeguards are put in place.
It is only a matter of time before you pick up the morning paper and read the paranormal headline that no one wants to see but everyone knew was coming.