You’ve probably seen a lot of coverage of the mysterious interstellar visitor known as Oumuamua in recent weeks. It was (and still is) a pretty big deal for a number of reasons, not least of which is that whatever it is, it is the first object humans have observed visiting into our Solar System from deep space. Some think it’s an asteroid, some think it’s a comet, and still others believe that it’s actually an alien probe making its way from star to star in search of something interesting. Now, a new theory has begun to take root in the more cynical science fans, and it’s definitely my new favorite.
When scientists from the Breakthrough Listen revealed that their hours-long study of the object didn’t return promising results for it being an alien probe, some casual observers suggested that maybe that’s because aliens are intentionally ignoring us. I think they just might be right.
Just think about it: An incredibly advanced alien race with the technology to launch interstellar observation probes to neighboring stars probably already knows about Earth. They’ve seen it — just like our own scientists here on Earth have spotted far-off planets and figured out what they’re made of without ever visiting them — and if they’ve reached a level of intelligence to create star-visiting vehicles that mankind can only dream of, there’s a good chance they’ve known about us for a long time already.
Any self-respecting alien who got a call from Earth right now would screen it. #Oumuamua
— Musa Okwonga (@Okwonga) December 14, 2017
Depending on how much they know about us already, they may already have seen that we’re rapidly destroying our own planet, engaging in massive conflicts with one another, and killing off our fellow species (not to mention one another) in record numbers. With all that in mind, why would they want anything to do with us?
After monitoring our television signals, the aliens on the probe urgently switched to radio silence, hoping to slink away without being noticed.
— Gerry Manacsa (@gerrym) December 16, 2017
If Oumuamua is somehow an alien craft, perhaps its handlers just wanted to get close enough to Earth to confirm that we don’t have the technology to come visit them instead. I mean, if you were an alien who spent an hour observing humanity, would you invite us to come check our your place? I sure wouldn’t. That might be the best proof of intelligent alien life that we’ve ever seen.