Maybe trying to contact E.T. and his interstellar friends isn't such a great idea after all. That's the thought from a number of leading physicists, says physicist and science writer Mark Buchanan.
An article Buchanan wrote, touches on the recent excitement about UFOs and a forthcoming report from the Pentagon about so-called "Unexplained Aerial Phenomena" (UAP), according to The Metro.
In April 2020, videos were released by the Defense Department showing US Navy aircraft coming into contact with these UAPs. Flying in directions at speed impossible for human-made machines, many people online are suggesting this could be evidence of alien technology. But Buchanan says he, and others in his field, don't think contact with aliens is something we should be pursuing.
"Chances are, we should all be grateful that we don't yet have any evidence of contact with alien civilizations. The attempt to communicate with extraterrestrials, if they do exist, could be extremely dangerous for us. The search for aliens has reached a stage of technological sophistication and associated risk that it needs strict regulation at national and international levels. Without oversight, even one person — with access to powerful transmitting technology — could take actions affecting the future of the entire planet," Buchanan writes.
Buchanan makes the case that, if we did meet aliens, they would likely be far more technologically advanced than us. It would be like when Christopher Columbus came to North America and the native population was put at risk by the technologically-superior Europeans.
"Most stars in our galaxy are much older than the sun. If civilizations arise fairly frequently on some planets, then there ought to be many civilizations in our galaxy millions of years more advanced than our own," he explains.
"Many of these would likely have taken significant steps to begin exploring and possibly colonizing the galaxy. Our history on Earth has given us many examples of what can happen when civilizations with unequal technology meet — generally, the technologically more advanced has destroyed or enslaved the other," Buchanan warns.