29 October 2006
Are We Alone?
Since humans first walked the earth we have looked up and wondered if it is possible to be alone in the vast universe in which we inhabit just one small planet. Often while gazing up the skies man has seen things he could not explain, and for the last fifty years or so these things have taken on the label "UFOs." As years passed, sightings and other extraterrestrial encounters became progressively more common around the world; igniting the UFO phenomenon and controversy which surrounds it. Many skeptics and non- believers say the sightings, testimonies, and photos are hoaxes. I feel the existence of aliens and proof of their visitation to earth is clear. The countless sightings, abduction cases, evidence, and the government conspiracy that is slowly being uncovered leaves little doubt.
UFO was originally an abbreviation for the Air Force term "Unidentified Flying Object"; UFO has become a synonym to most people for an "Alien Spaceship." A UFO or Unidentified Flying Object is any flying object that isn’t recognizable or can’t be determined by the observer. Though UFOs come in all shapes and sizes, sightings are commonly described as geometrical objects, disc or oval shaped, maneuvering or whirling lights, and cigar-shaped or rocket-like objects. Sightings and alien encounters were once regarded as almost exclusively an American phenomenon; UFO sighting have now been reported from every country in the world. In fact, many of us would be surprised to learn the number of UFO sightings that have occurred. In modern times there have been approximately 120,000 documented sightings, of which 20,000 have been described as landings (UFOEvidence). There isn’t a region on earth that hasn’t had reports of UFO encounters. More importantly, “Almost 50 percent of Americans, according to recent polls, and millions of people around the world believe that UFOs are real” (Jennings).
There are accounts of these unexplained objects in the sky throughout history, but Kenneth Arnold started the modern UFO controversy on June 24, 1947. Arnold was a search and rescue pilot from Boise, Idaho in Washington State searching for a downed military aircraft. He was flying his plane near Mount Rainier in Washington when he spotted nine silvery, crescent-shaped objects flying in a pattern over the mountain at an estimated speed of over 1,600 miles per hour. Arnold later described the craft as moving like "a saucer skipping across the water," and thus the term "flying saucer" was born (Berliner). Since Kenneth Arnold’s encounter, there have been over 3,500 documented sightings of Unidentified Aerial Phenomena by military, civilian, and commercial airline pilots (UFOEvidence). Pilots are among the most experienced observers of the sky; few occupations require more knowledge of weather, other aircrafts, and unusual activities that might occur in the sky. Therefore, it is significant that pilots have reported such a large number of unexplained UFO sightings.
Reported sightings and encounters with extraterrestrial aircraft were so common that members of the science community wanted more to be done in order to study this phenomenon. Accordingly, on Sept 1, 1968 five famous scientists recommended to Congress that they seriously plan to give its support to an intensive international study of UFOS (Ufologie). Theses five scientists brought their testimonial to a UFO symposium sponsored by the House Committee on Science and Astronautics. The scientists included Dr. Robert L. Baker Jr of the Computer Sciences Corporation; Dr. Robert L. Hall, professor of sociology at the University of Illinois; Dr. James A. Harder, professor of civil engineering of the University of California with Berkeley; Dr. James McDonald, senior of physics at the University of Arizona, and Dr. Carl Sagan, astronomer from Cornell University. Dr. McDonald spoke about what he learned while studying more than 300 UFO cases: “The...