NASA, SETI Prepare for the Arrival of Aliens
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Even though it may sound like something that comes out of the science-fiction books, the NASA American space agency and the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence (SETI) initiative, along with scientists, psychologists, ethicists, lawyers, representatives of the media and anthropologists, have recently held a three day-long workshop, trying to find ways of dealing with the issue of how people would react if they were told that aliens had been found.
And the reason they have met is not that they have already found a little green man and don't know how to break the news to the public. They have met because modern advancements in science and in monitoring technologies might soon give scientists and astronomers the possibility to discover life, no matter how small, on moons such as Titan and Europe, or even on Mars. Astronomical finds already number in the hundreds, and new ones are made almost daily.
At this rate of progress, it shouldn't surprise anyone if, at some point, some astronomer goes live and says that his or her team has found some microbe colony on Mars, or fish-like creatures in the underground oceans of Europa. However it is most likely that panic would ensue immediately, with individuals expected to fall under two categories: one that would be completely oblivious to the news and go on about its daily life as usual, and another that would panic and lock itself in the basement, with a lifetime supply of dehydrated food.
One of the hypothetical problems that has been discussed at the workshop has been the potential path the world would be faced with if we learned that Mars had living creatures on it. Not necessarily beings with legs and teeth, but tiny bacteria living below the surface, which could indeed be causing some of the planet's methane accumulations, would people care to move to Mars, turn it into a reserve, or simply limit their intrusion.
It may seem like a laugh that scientists and representatives of various groups are discussing about this now, but, when the time comes, we could use a little planning. We do create sketches before erecting a building, shouldn't we have one for colonizing or accepting other worlds?
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|Comment #1 by: James on 20 Feb 2009, 08:41 UTC|| reply to this comment|
I doubt very much that many people would panic over news of bacteria on Mars or fish on Europa. There'd be a handful of religious nuts who might freak out, but they'd most likely claim the discovery was a hoax or just go into denial. Overall, I think the news would be well received and might even cheer the world up a bit.
On the other hand, if ET decided to hover over our cities in the style of Independence Day, then there may well be mass panic. But then at least NASA and SETI wouldn't have to worry about making any announcements since it would be rather obvious to everyone anyway.
|Comment #2 by: Roel Poelwijk on 21 Feb 2009, 01:49 UTC|| reply to this comment|
People do not fear bacteria on a different planet in their daily life.
And since the Vatican "acknowledged" "possible" alien life those will manage too.(Let's keep it vague, who needs real answers.)
When the time comes we could use a little planning ?
For colonizing or accepting other worlds ?
You're going from one end to another. :-)
That's fine though I just can't get myself over some more basic details.
Why are we focused outwards ?
It's not like we're one happy planet, I'll spare all the horrible details.
Fix home first.
Since you jumped from one end to another.
Do you want to proudly represent an earthling from planet Earth greeting another life ?
Are you proud of where we are ?
Where do we stand for ?
We're nowhere ready to do that.
Start with yourself.
|Comment #3 by: John on 21 Feb 2009, 18:53 UTC|| reply to this comment|
Most people aren't very bright and may truly NOT understand the importance of discovering "bacterias" so they won't pay any attention to it and may just consider it normal and inoffensive just as the discovery of some new bacteria deep underground on earth.
The panic will occur only once they get to SEE something more intelligent, bigger or with some form of technology. Bacteria isn't much of a topic in the Bible so those religious fanatics won't care at all. I will welcome any evidence of extra-terrestrial life form for sure.
|Comment #4 by: Xen-0101 on 22 Feb 2009, 09:14 UTC|| reply to this comment|
By the way; we _will discover bacteria colonies on Mars; that are currently producing methane; and we _will discover fish in the Europan oceans. But the real kicker is when in about 10 years; we detect a very very old and ancient galactic civilization that have been here far far longer than we ever have.... stay tuned.....
|Comment #5 by: Mr. Code X on 26 May 2009, 09:45 UTC|| reply to this comment|
I have to agree with what James has said about the religious folks. They think that their religion is so holy as to point the fingers at others and say "go to hell" if you don't believe in our god. Religion my friends is nothing more than a cult which brainwashes good folks into becoming segregated bastards. I listened to coast to coast tonight and they had this pastor talking about how aliens are the work of the devil and how christianity is the only way to go and screw all else. That there is no life on other planets, and that the stars were meant to light the earth. Man, what the hell happened to people? How does he know god exists, what, assumption, theory, the answer to that question my friends is that if it wasn't for our good old SUN, we wouldn't even be here on this planet to make upo this religious god mumbo jumbo. I am proud to say that I believe in aliens and when they arrive in the near future, I hope those racist religious freaks will live their worst fears, the fears which would explain how humanity came to be, not by way of their god (or invisible it), but by way of nauture.
|Comment #6 by: dragonlady on 17 Jun 2009, 22:41 UTC|| reply to this comment|
We are our own aliens...we are preparing to launch the human race out into the universe, why can't this have happened before? What if an ancient (alien) race launched itself out, found our unpopulated planet and played around with the genes from certain species, which in turn led to the human race? Life comes full circle and will continue to so. God could be real, perhaps an alien him/herself? Let's not forget, that the stories handed down through the ages, are just that, stories without proof except in our own belief. Who wrote these stories?... Men! Power and control are great motivators and humans are the most manipulating beings, however, there is usually a grain of truth in most yarns as well as exaggeration and distortion to fit circumstances, so why couldn't the aliens have taken the easy way to lead us by acepting the role of god/gods? If true, then it worked to a degree, didn't it? Every civilization, including theirs would have its break-away factions which could account for the diversity of religion. Man himself would have been very willing to take advantage of that situation to manipulate others, gain power and keep up the deception. Science might one day find out the truth, but whatever happens in the future, one thing remains constant,, there will be those who will seize any opportunity to rule the roost. Let's hope, that higher minded beings will take us in hand before we destroy ourselves or worse still, project our own small minded pettiness further out into the galaxies. Most of us would prefer to maintain our integrity, think before we condemn possibilities beyond our imagination and accept that maybe the answer really is out there.. somewhere. Whether there really is a god or aliens, let's not make the human race look quite so stupid as we now do, by pooh poohing those who are willing to stretch their minds. With a little luck, we might even have a better future... but I won't hold my breath! The real panic merchants are the non believers and the people who hide any truths. I think that most people would keep their heads and not panic at all. Time will tell!
|Comment #7 by: Sally Simmons on 03 Nov 2011, 15:09 UTC|| reply to this comment|
from everything we learned in the past years is that anything is possible, if these people choose to stay in there homes maybe it wouldn't be the greatest plan to tell them but if something were to happen there would be more panic in the streets then people staying at home. some people actually might be exited to learn that we aren't the only creatures that can habit a planet.
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