As the great Billy Shakespeare once wrote, "To contact aliens, or not to contact aliens? That is the question."
Such is the current debate among scientists. We humans have made attempts to reach our little green cousins in the past (even using a Beatles song), but it's the scientific community that's really worked to bridge the planetary divide. Case in point? Recently, members of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence Institute (a totally real organization) spoke at the American Association for the Advancement of Science in San Jose. SETI members have been listening for 30 years with no luck, and would like to broadcast messages to nearby stars.
Needless to say, this turned into a fierce debate, and at the moment, an official decision has yet to be reached. The main concern: danger. "It is like shouting in a jungle. You don't know what is out there," as one put it. Seems like a solid assessment.
But Dr. Shostak, of SETI, disagrees. He noted that any society could waltz into America and blast our red-white-and-blued selves into smithereens (remember the Cold War?). Why fear aliens specifically?
My concern? We might not be on the same page evolutionary-wise. Aliens trying to communicate with us might be the equivalent of Stephen Hawking trying to chat physics with a hamster. And can you imagine their reaction to The Interview?
I think we can all agree that would be too embarrassing for any of us to survive . . .
Image: Men in Black. Courtesy of, Facebook