First contact with aliens could end in colonization and genocide if we don't learn from history

Mar 31, 2020
We are exploring new ground in this endeavor. Our history is tainted with the same cycle of social problems we deal with today. Tribal warfare. We have always been and continue to be a socially aggressive species. The human species is separated into different countries (or tribes) Our viewpoint is skewed as we would perceive any advanced form of life as a threat. It is reasonable to believe that this non- human race observing us has achieved unity as a species. This intelligent lifeform observing us has in no way been a threat to us. Their intent has been observation.

It is true SETI must dissociate itself from corporations and the military. A body representing a global government ( likely the UN) is both necessary and vital for both problem solving and decision making purposes. Experts from various fields including diplomacy are crucial. Any contact from earth must be unified.
Then there is the question of what an Extra Terrestrial Alien would be. IF there are intelligent ET Aliens, they might be almost unrecognizable as a species, and intercommunication might not even be a possibility. However, most discussions assume and ET Alien like this.

Anatomy Of An Alien

The popular vision of an ET Alien is rather the same everywhere, but with mass media, that is not surprising at all. In fact, it is to be expected, since media is largely involved in creating news, not reporting it.

Let’s look at ET. His head is large and bulbous, so that it can contain a larger brain. His fingers are long and slender, indicating that he no longer does manual labor because he has developed devices to do all of his work for him. He is small and fragile, because his technology has relieved him of the need for physical strength. His eyes are large, probably because he is into visual rather than physical activities. He wears no clothes, because he has progressed past the need for modesty. He carries no tools or weapons because his superior intellect allows him to control humans without physical interaction.

What can we discover about the ramifications of these physical properties? Look at our own evolution, and it is clear that each of these attributes is a natural evolutionary extrapolation of what we would look like if we continue to evolve along our current evolutionary path. Since it is natural for most people to assume that in order for ET Aliens to visit us they would have to be far advanced, this is then a natural expectation of what ET “should” look like.

If there had been no UFO flap, and no “sightings” of “abductions”, and people were asked to describe what an ET Alien would probably be like, they would all most likely come up with an “alien grey” or something very similar.

There is one other factor which is never talked about. If we assume that ET Aliens would naturally be far more advanced than we, it would be extremely unlikely that ANYONE would EVER propose that ET was “insectoid”, or “reptilian”, or a “bug-eyed monster”. It would be unthinkable, not to mention treasonable, to assume that any of those could be superior to us. The only entities which could possibly be superior to us is……….our own evolved selves.

Stereotypical ET Aliens are clearly the creation of the projection of our own advancing evolution. They are really the only likely form our imaginations would create, but they are certainly not what nature would be likely to create on a distant world. I would be greatly surprised if distant independent genesis and evolution produced beings that so closely resembled humans. There is no compelling reason that evolution should choose this form over the thousands of other possible forms in the complex chain of evolutionary development.
The history, and "pre-history" that was not written down, indicates that tribes of humans have been fighting each other for resources for a long time, probably for the entire duration of the human species. While the most recent colonizations by European ethnic groups provide a good history of how that can hurt less technologically capable indigenous groups, those groups hurt then were most likely themselves the colonizers of some other groups in the past, although they did not document it with written histories. The Americas show evidence of developed societies such as the Aztecs conducting wars with surrounding, less advanced tribes. The Carib "Indians" conquered the Caribbean islands from other groups, actually eating them in cannibalism. It is considered not unlikely that "modern humans" killed off the Neanderthals in ice age Europe by virtue of more advanced weapons and survival strategies, even though the Neanderthals were better physically adapted to the environment there.

So, our history has been self-destructive for a very long time.

But, we do seem to be making some progress in some places on some issues. Most nations have outlawed slavery, and most seem to at least pretend to be "democratic", even when they are totalitarian. Still, we have a very long way to go to become one peaceful society. I am not sure we will even get that done before we crash our technological civilization and revert to more beastly behaviors to survive.

So, do we really think that any other species that is technologically advanced enough to physically reach Earth will have by then achieved what we say we are still striving to achieve in the way of peaceful respect for others? Would their societies have self-destructed before attaining the technological capabilities needed to reach Earth if they had not achieved the ethics we say we want to achieve? Are we sure? Why are we sure? We don't even know what the necessary technologies are, so we don't know what is required of a society to develop them. Maybe they are one discovery away from us, today, and we will make that discovery before we evolve into "our better selves".

We really just don't know what we would be like if we were the ones going to another planet.

And consider that another species coming to this planet might be so different from us that the would not even consider us worthy of preservation. Earthlings step on bugs - why wouldn't a space faring bug species step on humans, especially if they see us stepping on bugs that remind them of their ancestors?
May 14, 2021
Chimpanzees and Bonobos separated a couple million years ago with the rise of the Congo River. The Chimps are more warlike, sometimes attacking other tribes when encountered. Bonobos are more like hippies. Make love not war. If only we had inherited the Bonobo personality traits. So, that’s not to say that all exocivilizations would be like us.
But, anyway, we seem to be spending a lot of time and energy conjecturing what aliens will be like when we have no clue what any kind of life is like out there besides us.
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Dec 29, 2022
I think man has tried to characterize himself as an explorer, seeking news lands, new resources and new peoples, where no man has gone before. I'm more cynical. I don't believe migration was due to lack of resources, famine or climate change. I think it was to get away from people. People change their nature when making groups. I think disease and conflict caused migration. The want of getting away from the screwy people. And taxes. And conscription. Servitude. You know.....the screwy people.

Societies run-a-ways. Awol-ers. People who don't want to put up with other people. And are willing to live in hardship to be free of it. Who had to grub much.

Maybe the first to visit us will be considered misfits from the home they come from. Hunter gatherer lifestyle.

And then some say the first would likely be machines and probes not living forms.
Aug 20, 2023
The aliens will be the ones who determine the parameters of a first contact, not us with our petty little divisions.

Any alien race advanced enough to accomplish interstellar travel will be so far ahead of us technologically and sociologically that we will be toddlers in comparison. They will set the rules regarding contact and we will follow them.

It is much more probable that our first evidence of alien intelligence will be found remotely by our radio telescopes. Giving us decades or centuries or even millenia to adjust to the idea that we are not alone before direct contact is made. If it is ever made before we destroy ourselves.
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Mar 31, 2020
Agreed. At the moment, they do not wish contact. But, we may be forcing their hand. For all the terrible things humanity has done (think back to back world wars) there is the other side of the coin, we do great good as well.
if a someone falls overboard on a boat, everyone around him will do all that they can to save him.
Do not discount the greatness of humanity. Give us any environment and we will adapt to it. They have been observing us, even the smallest of our inventions could be an enormous breakthrough in their society.
It is more like we are a wayward child or teenager and in the background we have a mentor, attempting to guide us.
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