33.4 HUMAN FEAR AND HOSTILITY
Besides the foregoing reasons, contacting humans is downright dangerous. Think about that for a moment! On the microscopic level our bodies reject and fight (through production antibodies) any alien material; this process helps us fight off disease but it also sometimes results in allergic reactions to innoxious materials. On the macroscopic (psychological and sociological) level we are antagonistic to beings that are "different". For proof of that, just watch how an odd child is treated by other children, or how a minority group is socially deprived, or how the Arabs feel about the Israelis (Chinese vs Japanese, Turks vs Greeks, etc.) In case you are hesitant to extend that concept to the treatment of aliens let me point out that in very ancient times, possible extraterrestrials may have been treated as Gods but in the last two thousand years, the evidence is that any possible aliens have been ripped apart by mobs, shot and shot at, physically assaulted, and in general treated with fear and aggression.
In Ireland about 1,000 A.D., supposed airships were treated as "demonships." In Lyons, France, "admitted" space travelers were killed. More recently, on 24 July 1957 Russian anti- aircraft batteries on the Kouril Islands opened fire on UFO's. Although all Soviet anti-aircraft batteries on the Islands were in action, no hits were made. The UFO's were luminous and moved very fast. We too have fired on UFO's. About ten o'clock one morning, a radar site near a fighter base picked up a UFO doing 700 mph. The UFO then slowed to 100 mph, and two F-86's were scrambled to intercept. Eventually one F-86 closed on the UFO at about 3,000 feet altitude. The UFO began to accelerate away but the pilot still managed to get within 500 yards of the target for a short period of time. It was definitely saucer shaped. As the pilot pushed the F-86 at top speed, the UFO began to pull away. When the range reached 1,000 yards, the pilot armed his guns and fired in an attempt to down the saucer. He failed, and the UFO pulled away rapidly, vanishing in the distance. This same basic situation may have happened on a more personal level. On Sunday evening 21 August 1955, eight adults and three children were on the Sutton Farm (one-half mile from Kelly, Kentucky) when, according to them, one of the children saw a brightly glowing UFO settle behind the barn, out of sight from where he stood. Other witnesses on nearby farms also saw the object. However, the Suttons dismissed it as a "shooting star", and did not investigate. Approximately thirty minutes later (at 8:00 pm), the family dogs began barking so two of the men went to the back door and looked out. Approximately 50 feet away and coming toward them was a creature wearing a glowing silvery suit. It was about three and one-half feet tall with a large round head and very long arms. It had large webbed hands which were equipped with claws. The two Suttons grabbed a twelve gauge shotgun and a .22 caliber pistol, and fired at close range. They could hear the pellets and bullet ricochet as if off of metal. The creature was knocked down, but jumped up and scrambled away. The Suttons retreated into the house, turned off all inside lights, and turned on the porch light. At that moment, one of the women who was peeking out of the dining room window discovered that a creature with some sort of helmet and wide slit eyes was peeking back at her. She screamed, the men rushed in and started shooting. The creature was knocked backwards but again scrambled away without apparent harm. More shooting occurred (a total of about 50 rounds) over the next 20 minutes and the creatures finally left (perhaps feeling unwelcome?) After about a two hour wait (for safety), the Suttons left too. By the time the police got there, the aliens were gone but the Suttons would not move back to the farm. They sold it and departed. This reported incident does bear out the contention though that humans are dangerous. At no time in the story did the supposed aliens shoot back, although one is left with the impression that the described creatures were having fun scaring humans.
33.5 ATTEMPTS AT SCIENTIFIC APPROACHES
In any scientific endeavor, the first step is to aquire data, the second step to classify the data, and the third step to form hypothesis. The hypothesis are tested by repeating the entire process, with each cycle resulting in an increase in understanding (we hope). The UFO phenomenon does not yield readily to this approach because the data taken so far exhibits both excessive variety and vagueness. The vagueness is caused in part by the lack of preparation of the observer...very few people leave their house knowing that they are going to see a UFO that evening. Photographs are overexposed or underexposed, and rarely in color. Hardly anyone carries around a radiation counter or magnetometer. And, in addition to this, there is a very high level of "noise" in the data.
The noise consists of mistaken reports of known natural phenomena, hoaxes, reports by unstable individuals and mistaken removal of data regarding possible unnatural or unknown natural phenomena (by overzealous individuals who are trying to eliminate all data due to known natural phenomena). In addition, those data, which do appear to be valid, exhibit an excessive amount of variety relative to the statistical samples which are available. This has led to very clumsy classification systems, which in turn provide quite unfertile ground for formulation of hypothesis.
One hypothesis which looked promising for a time was that of ORTHOTENY (i.e., UFO sightings fall on "great circle" routes). At first, plots of sightings seemed to verify the concept of orthoteny but recent use of computers has revealed that even random numbers yield "great circle" plots as neatly as do UFO sightings.
There is one solid advance that has been made though. Jacques and Janine Vallee have taken a particular type of UFO - namely those that are lower than tree-top level when sighted - and plotted the UFO's estimated diameter versus the estimated distance from the observer. The result yields an average diameter of 5 meters with a very characteristic drop for short viewing distances. This behavior at the extremes of the curve is well known to astronomers and psychologists as the "moon illusion." The illusion only occurs when the object being viewed is a real, physical object. Because this implies that the observers have viewed a real object, it permits us to accept also their statement that these particular UFO's had a rotational axis of symmetry.
Another, less solid, advance made by the Vallee's was their plotting of the total number of sightings per week versus the date. They did this for the time span from 1947 to 1962, and then attempted to match the peaks of the curve (every 2 years 2 months) to the times of Earth-Mars conjunction (every 2 years 1.4 months). The match was very good between 1950 and 1956 but was poor outside those limits. Also, the peaks were not only at the times of Earth-Mars conjunction but also roughly at the first harmonic (very loosely, every 13 months). This raises the question why should UFO's only visit Earth when Mars is in conjunction and when it is on the opposite side of the sun. Obviously, the conjunction periodicity of Mars is not the final answer. As it happens, there is an interesting possibility to consider. Suppose Jupiter's conjunctions were used; they are every 13.1 months. That would satisfy the observed periods nicely, except for every even data peak being of different magnitude from every odd data peak. Perhaps a combination of Martian, Jovian, and Saturnian (and even other planetary) conjunctions will be necessary to match the frequency plot...if it can be matched.
Further data correlation is quite difficult. There are a large number of different saucer shapes but this may mean little. For example, look at the number of different types of aircraft which are in use in the U. S. Air Force alone.
In is obvious that intensive scientific study is needed in this area; no such study has yet been undertaken at the necessary levels of intensity needed. Something that must be guarded against in any such study is the trap of implicitly assuming that our knowledge of Physics (or any other branch of science) is complete. An example of one such trap is selecting a group of physical laws which we now accept as valid, and assume that they will never be superseded.
Five such laws might be:
1) Every action must have an opposite and equal reaction.
2) Every particle in the universe attracts every other particle with a force proportional to the product of the masses and inversely as the square of the distance.
3) Energy, mass and momentum are conserved.
4) No material body can have a speed as great as c, the speed of light in free space.
5) The maximum energy, E, which can be obtained from a body at rest is E=mc2, where m is the rest mass of the body.
Laws numbered 1 and 3 seem fairly safe, but let us hesitate and take another look. Actually, law number 3 is only valid (now) from a relativistic viewpoint; and for that matter so are laws 4 and 5. But relativity completely revised these physical concepts after 1915, before then Newtonian mechanics were supreme. We should also note that general relativity has not yet been verified. Thus we have the peculiar situation of five laws which appear to deny the possibility of intelligent alien control of UFO's, yet three of the laws are recent in concept and may not even be valid. Also, law number 2 has not yet been tested under conditions of large relative speeds or accelerations. We should not deny the possibility of alien control of UFO's on the basis of preconceived notions not established as related or relevant to the UFO's.
From available information, the UFO phenomenon appears to have been global in nature for almost 50,000 years. The majority of known witnesses have been reliable people who have seen easily-explained natural phenomena, and there appears to be no overall positive correlation with population density. The entire phenomenon could be psychological in nature but that is quite doubtful. However, psychological factors probably do enter the data picture as "noise." The phenomenon could also be entirely due to known and unknown phenomena (with some psychological "noise" added in) but that too is questionable in view of some of the available data.
This leaves us with the unpleasant possibility of alien visitors to our planet, or at least of alien controlled UFO's. However, the data are not well correlated, and what questionable data there are suggest the existence of at least three and maybe four differnet groups of aliens (possibly at different states of development). This too is difficult to accept. It implies the existence of intelligent life on a majority of the planets in our solar system, or a surprisingly strong interest in Earth by members of other solar systems.
A solution to the UFO problem may be obtained by the long and diligent effort of a large group of well financed and competent scientists, unfortunately there is no evidence suggesting that such an effort is going to be made. However, even if such an effort were made, there is no guarantee of success because of the isolated and sporadic nature of the sightings. Also, there may be nothing to find, and that would mean a long search with no profit at the end. The best thing to do is to keep an open and skeptical mind, and not take an extreme position on any side of the question.
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