I’ve been interested in extraterrestrial life practically since birth. Being born only a few months after the release of Star Wars Episode 4: A New Hope, my early childhood was heavily influenced by the concept of space exploration. The 1970s and ‘80s were jam-packed with lovable aliens and inter-galactic diplomacy.
Science-Fiction becomes science fact.
It’s hardly a secret that we humans are exploratory beings. Since the dawn of time, we have been searching out new lands, ideas, and pushing the boundaries of what is possible. What once was only a fantasy, a dream of exploring unknown frontiers, and hopeful projections of technology has become reality in many facets of modern life.
We have evolved technologically so quickly in a single century that it’s almost shocking. Concepts that were mere flights of fancy 100 years ago, such as instant visual communications between people on opposite sides of our planet, are commonplace today.
How close have we come to finding extraterrestrial life?
There’s no denying that pop culture has made the concept of contact with alien life forms a norm in modern society, but is there any scientific data to base this on? You might be surprised at just how seriously the scientific community and the government take this question. Various organizations and scientific think tanks have been created to discover the possibilities and realities of space exploration.
A brief history of extraterrestrial research and responsibilities
The Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence, or SETI, era effectively began in 1959-1960. NASA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, an independent organization that works with the government, has been involved with SETI research since the 1960s, through efforts like Project Orion, and the High-Resolution Microwave Survey, among others.
In 1992, NASA initiated a formal SETI program, however less than a year later, Congress cancelled it. There isn’t an official governmental agency or military branch that deals with space exploration just yet, although there is talk of the implantation of such a Space Force. Currently, the U.S Airforce and U.S. Navy share the military’s input and responsibilities toward space exploration and extraterrestrial life. The FBI and CIA are the governmental agencies that investigate reports of sightings.
Have extraterrestrials already found us?
Since 1947, only 34 years since the Wright brothers successfully completed the first flight at Kitty Hawk, N.C., there have been reported sightings of extraterrestrial visitors. In the years between the first reported and investigated sighting and today, the belief in intelligent life outside of Earth has never faded out completely, and at times, has become a cultural phenomenon around the globe.
Each decade since 1947 has had its own wave of sightings and pop culture has fueled this speculation as much as scientific study has. The topic is absolutely embedded in the fabric of society nowadays and can be found in everywhere today.
Ambassadors of Earth
When it’s all said and done, we represent our planet. Let’s make a good intergalactic impression if contact is made some day.