The title of this article is a question I often get asked, in varying ways. And, while any answer from me can only be theoretical in nature - and absolutely nothing else, at all - it is at least worth pondering on the issue. Let’s say that tomorrow – and in an admittedly incredible stroke of luck – someone out in the woods stumbles upon the body of a Bigfoot. They call the police, the FBI, and / or the media. Within hours, the entire world finally knows the amazing truth: Bigfoot is real. On the plus side, such an astonishing discovery might very well mean that mainstream science and conventional zoology would be prepared to accept the possibility that other "unknowns" – such as the beasts of Loch Ness, Scotland; the Abominable Snowman of the Himalayas; Ogopogo; sea-serpents and more – also exist. That being so, perhaps this might result in funding from official bodies to assist in the search for such creatures. All of this would be very good news.
Proving the existence of Bigfoot might not be so profitable for everyone, however. What if, upon analysis of the corpse of the creature, Bigfoot is indeed shown to be an unknown type of ape? Might that result in the location where the beast was found being declared "No Go" for most of us, due to the probable scarcity of the creatures? Might we see entire areas of forest and woodland indefinitely closed to the American public, all as a result of concerns that we are infringing upon the territory of unique creatures that the government decides to place on an endangered-species list?
Similarly, what about Bigfoot and the logging industry? Could official legislation force the industry to suspend its work anywhere, and possibly everywhere, that Bigfoot creatures are seen or even rumored to live? That may be extremely good news for the nation's Bigfoot population, but not for those significant numbers of people whose livelihood comes from chopping down trees. Hell, the economy is in bad enough shape already without Bigfoot being responsible for causing additional job-losses!
There’s another scenario, too: let’s address the possibility that we don’t stumble upon the body of a Bigfoot. Instead, let’s hypothesize that a hunter – out in the woods, looking for deer – sees a Bigfoot in his gun-sights, fires, and slays the beast with one shot. Doubtless, in his world, Mr. Hunter would feel like a real man. And, no doubt, his mind would immediately be filled with images of seeing Bigfoot's head mounted on his living-room wall. Yep, real clever, I don’t think. But, guess what: that pathetic creature (the hunter, I mean, not the unlucky Bigfoot) might be in for a Sasquatch-sized surprise.
If, one day, we do secure a Bigfoot corpse, then an in-depth autopsy will be as essential as it will be inevitable. But, can you imagine the uproar and controversy that could manifest if the Bigfoot entities are found – upon study – not to be unknown apes, after all, but a primitive and ancient off-shoot of the Human Race? Rather than slaying a monster, has our hunter actually just committed cold-blooded murder? Could the shooter be tried in court, sentenced, and even jailed? Almost certainly not, due to the overwhelmingly bizarre, and one of a kind, circumstances involved. However, it would likely be a given that from immediately thereafter laws would be laid down informing people that if you kill a Bigfoot you are technically taking the life of a fellow-human, albeit one distantly related to us. But still a human, nevertheless. And, duly warned, you may find yourself prosecuted to the full extent of the law if you do choose to go ahead and bag a Bigfoot, as a means to try and compensate for your minuscule manhood.
All the above is, as I said at the beginning, strictly theoretical. It's also dependent on several things: that Bigfoot actually exist, that they are flesh-and-blood beasts (rather than paranormal entities, as some – including me – strongly suspect is the case), and that we are fortunate enough to find undeniable proof of existence. But, if we do strike gold and secure such amazing evidence, there’s only one thing we can say with any degree of certainty: it’s going to be after Bigfoot is shot by a laughable wannabee bad-ass, is stumbled upon, or is discovered that we will see the really interesting – and probably unanticipated – developments begin to surface. Of course, given that Bigfoot is a dimension-hopping Tulpa and is impervious to bullets, I'm not holding my breath.