Ants are interesting creatures in their own right. They are found in deserts and rain forests, mountains and valleys, from the Arctic Circle to the tip of South America.  Their lifespan is about 45-60 days. They are quite social, and live in groups or colonies.

What do ants know about this blog, which you are reading right now? What do they know about the Internet?

Nothing. Absolutely nothing. It’s so far removed from their daily lives that they can’t possibly imagine that it exists. They have no concepts in their world to address such things.

How would you tell them that it exists? The task is absolutely enormous. There’s so much technology involved, where would you start?  Would you have to make it so simple that it sounds like a fairy tale? And even if you explained it like a fairy tale, how would you get them to listen to you long enough without them dismissing you as far-fetched, crazy, or merely an entertaining storyteller?

People are found in deserts and rain forests, mountains and valleys, from the Arctic Circle to the tip of South America. People have a lifespan of about 60-100 years. People are quite social, and live in groups (families), or colonies (cities).

How like ants we are.

Our understanding of the existence of alien peoples is similar to the ants’ understanding of the Internet. Our resistance is similar as well. We think we’re one up on the ants because we can imagine it, and we try to observe them, but it doesn’t matter much. For example, NASA’s Kepler spacecraft has been busy monitoring stars and found 706 potential alien planets. Do you think it will it change many minds? Probably not. We have stories of alien contacts and even abductions. Do people believe them? About as often as they believe fairy tales.

To quote City of Angels, one of my favorite movies, “Some things are true whether you believe ’em or not”. Personally, I’ve believed in the existence of alien peoples for a very long time. I think our problem is that that we act like ants trying to understand the Internet. And when we happen to find something of real interest, we repress it, squash it, or otherwise censor it.

In the Victorian era, people put special coverings over chair legs because the shape of the chair legs suggested sexuality. In today’s world, most of us find this idea funny, silly, and ridiculous. And it is. Today’s response to this type of thing is “yewww got issues”.

When it comes to alien peoples, “we’ve got issues”. We need to see that our ideas about them are just as funny, silly, and ridiculous as putting coverings over chair legs.

I think we don’t hear from alien people because we’re too much work – we’re so backward, repressed, and we’re too busy putting coverings on chair legs. Basically, we’re just too much of a pain in the ass for them to bother with us.

We need to grow up.