Nothing To Fear But Fear Itself
Investigating anomalous flying objects (UFOs) has an extremely important aspect attached to it, one that is so crucial it is essential before any investigation can begin. The witness must be willing to tell the investigator what was observed; in other words, file a simple report. As basic as this seems, it is very often the stumbling block to pursuing a sighting which may have tremendous potential.
Over the last couple of months I had two instances where friends told me they knew someone who had a recent sighting. In each instance, after hearing what was seen, I asked if they would be kind enough to contact the individuals involved, give them my phone number (and/or business card) and ask them to give me a call. I insisted that the witnesses be told "all information will be held in the strictest confidence." Unfortunately, I never received the awaited phone call.
After more than fifty years of UFOs being officially reported in this country, there is still a high degree of ridicule attached to the phenomenon. The ridicule is, more often than not, imaginary, yet this doesn't deter a witness from not reporting what was seen. With more UFOs being observed worldwide than ever before, one would think that we should have overcome the "laugh-ability factor" a long time ago. We have not.
Something in the human makeup has taught us to feel comfortable in our beliefs and resist change at all costs. This concept hasn't fluctuated much as far back as man has been keeping records. Paradigms (or ways of thinking on a particular subject) are difficult to break. Galileo encountered this with the revolutionary (but factual) theory that the earth revolves around the sun. On a lesser scale, The Wright brothers were exposed to ridicule every time one of their "airplanes" failed. "If man was meant to fly, he'd have wings." And of course we need to remember the once widely accepted notion that the world was flat, and if one sailed too far from the sight of land it would mean utter destruction.
Today we are faced with the new paradigm that we earthlings are not the only intelligent life in the universe. The old argument is the same as with any degree of non-acceptance of a new idea: the other planets in our solar system are not hospitable to life. This is one statement that is often used to refute the possibility of life. Yet, my original statement was based on the "universe" and not limited to our solar system. Those who resist change will often argue from a very particular point of view . . . in this case the solar system. It may very well be true that intelligent life would find difficulty existing on one of our nine planets other than Earth. However, the same argument doesn't hold when we expand the possibility to ANYWHERE in the universe.
The other argument which is commonly used is "If there is intelligent life out there, it couldn't possibly get here from there. The distance is just too great." Again, the assumption that we know all the physics there is to know, and we possess all the knowledge in the universe. It is refreshing to recall that this statement comes from scientists who told us a few years ago that eating eggs is bad for us. Today the same scientists say they may have been wrong and eggs are OK, as long as we don't overdo it. Of course, the point is we really don't have all the answers, and just because our present way of thinking tells us that extreme distances in space travel are impossible, that doesn't make it so, in actuality.
With the Hubble telescope exposing our eyes to billions of galaxies we have never seen before, and each of those galaxies containing billions of stars of various sizes, the possibility of no other life except that on earth becomes ludicrous. Further, life on earth is relatively young. If life existed "out there" thousands, millions or even billions of years before us, the possibility becomes more tenable that intelligence exists greater than we can imagine.
Herein lies the rub. We humans see ourselves from an extremely narcissistic point of view. We believe that we are not only the epitome of creation, but also the most intelligent. We can't see anything except our own reflection. Unfortunately, what we may believe to be true stands in the way of our arriving at what may be reality.
Change involves fear of the unknown. Fear must also be dealt with in some way as we resist the change ... the change that makes us uncomfortable. One way to resist change and deal with our fears is to laugh at anything new. Ridicule is a powerful tools in keeping things status quo. What better way to resist the concept of extraterrestrial intelligence, aliens, UFOs, than to laugh at those who claim to have seen these otherworldly entities and objects. It seems to be working well, for as I stated previously, it still keeps witnesses from reporting anomalous events and consequently hindering investigation.
Truth will always prevail. Although there are many witnesses who remain silent out of fear, there are many who are able to conquer their anxiety and report what they have seen, regardless of consequences. If extraterrestrials are visiting us, concealing the evidence will not change that fact, anymore than ignoring an illness will make it go away. Sometimes we must face truth square in the face ... stand eye to eye with what seems impossible, and accept what may very well be not only possible, but probable. UFOs are the next challenge. They are the modern day paradigm shift which must be dealt with in a positive manner without fear of reprisal. As investigators seeking the truth, it is important that we help dispel the fears in reporting anything unusual.
Let us become worthy of the public trust. Let us respect the witness and seek the truth.