There are examples all throughout history of people who guessed, knew, or figured something out a long time before the rest of us, and in general, they’re usually written off as huge kooks.
Most of us have trouble believing in what we can’t see, and it turns out that we’re also a bit mean to the people who don’t – but these 15 people stuck to their guns, no matter who called them nuts.
But it was all good in the end, when they were proved to be right.
15. How did I not know this?
Younger Redditors might not know who she is but she was a singer/songwriter from Ireland who was a staple in the Alternative Music scene during the late 80s and early to mid 90s who had some cross-over hits.
Anyway, at the height of her popularity she was the musical guest on Saturday Night Live after canceling an earlier scheduled spot in protest against the guest host which was some dumba$s standup comic from the 80s called Andrew Dice Clay (As Scott Thompson described him: “it’s as if someone took your grandmother, the one who can’t speak English, and taught her to swear phonetically, gave her a special on HBO and made her a star”).
During her performance she sang an acapella version of Bob Marley’s “War” changing the lyrics to make it about child sexual abuse instead of racism. At the end of the performance she shouted something like “Fight the real enemy” and ripped up a picture of the pope.
In the following weeks people lost their shit and on the next episode of Saturday Night Live they had at least 3 sketches that tore her apart. A few years later the Catholics S^x Abuse Scandal broke internationally.
14. Always a tough call.
The ex-husband of my ex-girlfriend . Turns out he wasn’t the crazy one after all. He kept trying to tell me and if I would have listened from the beginning I could have saved 4 years of my life.
13. Some people just know.
About ten years ago there was this stoner who always hung around the shop that I played Magic at. One day, he told me that he didn’t trust Jared from Subway. I said that there was nothing to worry about and that the only thing that Jared did was eat sandwiches. He said that there was something really sinister about Jared, and that he could tell just by looking at him.
12. They knew she was telling the truth.
Courtney Love and her quip about Weinstein.
It’s still wild to me that people will villainize someone while knowing damn well they are speaking the truth.
11. There isn’t a happy ending.
That one journalist Gary Webb that uncovered the truth that the CIA aided and abetted Nicaraguan contra rebels in funneling cocaine into inner city communities.
And then he was blackballed and later killed himself.
There is actually a book about Gary Webb, his investigation, and the aftermath called Kill the Messenger by Nick Schou.
10. A classic for a reason.
The classic example, of course, is Cassandra; in Greek mythology she was cursed to know the future, but for no one to believe her when she told them.
9. Moms are (almost) always right.
My mom. Turns out being Emo was really just a phase.
8. He was bound to be telling the truth at some point.
Johnny Rotten said in an interview that he knew Jimmy Savile was into all kinds of “seediness”.
People dismissed it as typical Johnny Rotten anti establishment talk (for which he is famous).
As it turned out, he was right.
7. The joke is on all of us.
The people who said the government was spying on its citizens.
6. Those things freak me out.
The people who discovered prions.
All the other biologists thought they were crazy to suggest one protein could be an infectious agent.
Nope those biologists were wrong and Nobel prizes were awarded.
5. This hurts my heart.
Dude went on national TV to tell everyone that there was a network of sexual abusers in Hollywood, and that he himself had been abused, and people LAUGHED AT HIM and shunned him.
And then it came out that pretty much everything he was saying was true.
4. No one wanted to believe it.
Me. About my (now disowned) cousin.
He kept stealing things from me which my family felt was no big deal. But it escalated. It went from stealing candy, to my things, to cash, and after that I asked them how much longer they would support him and call me “selfish” for “not sharing”. The line was finally crossed when he stole our grandmothers credit cards and her car.
She finally wrote him off.
This was AFTER he had stolen all of her jewelry, including the last present (anniversary ring) my grandfather was ever to give her.
Oh, but he tried to say that our family kicked him out because he’s gay. No. None of us cared about that, it was because he’s a thief.
His “friends” have bailed him out of jail and then dropped him when he steals from them.
But he claims the world is “just unfair” to him.
Now he tells his pity story and milks the “my family disowned me because I’m gay” to everyone he begs from. I learned this when he tried to do it to one of my friends.
3. A tale as old as time, unfortunately.
The people who were tortured as a part of MK Ultra.
Imagine trying to convince the people around you that the government is trying to make you crazy with mind control, only years later to find out that not only was it true, but you wouldn’t get compensation for it. And you were subject to illegal human experimentation.
2. Did they think he was jealous?
Jose Canseco. He revealed that a bunch of baseball players (Mark McGwire, Rafael Palmeiro, etc) were doing steroids.
No one believed him for years, until everyone else got caught doing steroids.
1. Hindsight and all of that.
Congresswoman Barbara Lee was the only congressperson out of 535 members who voted no on the Authorized Use of Military Force Act after the 9/11 attacks (there were also 12 present/not voting recorded). In her words,
“It was a blank check to the president to attack anyone involved in the September 11 events—anywhere, in any country, without regard to our nation’s long-term foreign policy, economic and national security interests, and without time limit. In granting these overly broad powers, the Congress failed its responsibility to understand the dimensions of its declaration. I could not support such a grant of war-making authority to the president; I believe it would put more innocent lives at risk. The president has the constitutional authority to protect the nation from further attack, and he has mobilized the armed forces to do just that. The Congress should have waited for the facts to be presented and then acted with fuller knowledge of the consequences of our action.”
For her vote she received death threats, a damaged political career, she was called insane, a traitor, and a communist. And she was 100% right.
Humanity sure would be a lot better off if we had listened to some of these folks early on, don’t you think?
What’s your favorite example of this phenomenon? Drop some knowledge on us in the comments!