Contact could end all life on Earth
Quite simply, making contact with aliens could result in humanity being destroyed. Some scientists fear that sending honing beacons out into the vast unknown only paints a target on our back and that it’s just a matter of time before a more advanced society descends upon Earth and wipes us out. Yikes.
Mankind could benefit
Astrophysicist Lucianne Walkowicz claims that meeting aliens could benefit mankind, being “something that accelerates the ability to live quality lives on Earth”. With the assumption that alien lifeforms possess more advanced technology than us mere humans, the hope is that we’d work together, sharing resources.
We could be invaded
Stephen Hawking likened meeting extraterrestrials to Columbus invading America. The physicist believes that foreign lifeforms wouldn’t hesitate in trying to colonize our planet, beating humanity into submission, and that we should be doing everything we can to avoid making contact with species from beyond the stars.
We would attack them
Astronomer Alberto Caballero believes that we are far more likely to attack any alien species than they are to attack us. In fact, the scientist goes on to say that there’s a measly 0.0014% chance of Earth being invaded by a technologically advanced civilization – citing that other alien races don’t battle one another to back his claims.
We have no solid plan in place
If we make contact with aliens, we don’t actually have a set plan in place, according to Niklas Hedman, executive director of UN Office for Outer Space Affairs. He claims that the course of action we would take “boils down to the will of member states”.
Aliens could steal our resources
In a dystopian future that’s straight out of a sci-fi movie, some scientists fear that extraterrestrials would use Earth to plunder its resources, turning humankind into cattle. Physicist Mark Buchanan fears that aliens “may not be disposed to treat us nicely”. As a race that destroys its own home, who could blame them?
It could humble humanity
Seeing UFOs in our sky could unite humanity on a global level, leading to a Utopian society. Some theorize that meeting a life form from beyond our own solar system could dissolve borderlines, put an end to war, and connect the entire planet with a common interest. An overly optimistic outcome, perhaps, but not impossible.
Global mass panic would ensue
As humanity is, at its core, violent, destructive, and trigger-happy, a likely outcome from encountering an alien species is mass, global panic. With man turning against man, riots could erupt on the streets, while nukes could be launched out of fear and anguish. Not the prettiest picture.
Aliens could be granted rights
We already have laws and regulations for space. These treaties cover the prohibition of weapons and declare that each nation is responsible for its own space exploration. Currently, these laws are focused on humans and how our actions affect one another. These treaties could be extended to Martians if the need arose, potentially granting them with laws of protection.
We’d be ignored
If aliens had any sense, they’d steer clear of humanity. Some scientists believe that aliens are already aware of our existence, but see us as an inferior species unworthy of their time. Others follow the zoo theory – a hypothesis that proposes that aliens know that we’re here, but purposely leave us be in order to let evolution and biology play out naturally.