If Extraterrestrials don’t exist, why are there laws against them?

If you know me well at all, then you know I believe it is entirely possible that aliens exist…and I’ll explain why in a second.

Knowing this about me, my friend Josh (@heyjosh on twitter) sent me this random fact he stumbled on this morning:

If the government has no knowledge of aliens, then why does Title 14, Section 1211 of the Code of Federal Regulations, implemented on July 16 1969, make it illegal for U.S.citizens to have any contact with extraterrestrials or their vehicles?

Good question.

I did a small bit of digging and found this Snopes.com posting about this law, commonly referred to as “The ET Exposure Law”. According to Snopes,

The purpose of Title 14, Section 1211 of the CFR was not to “make it illegal for U.S. citizens to have any contact with extraterrestrials or their vehicles”; the law allowed the government to prevent the possibility of biological contamination from pathogens carried to Earth by men and objects returning from space by enforcing a quarantine on any people, plant or animal life, or other material that had “touched directly or come within the atmospheric envelope of any other celestial body.”

Sure, the government could be using Snopes to help cover up the true meaning of this law…or it could just genuinely be a case of misinterpretation by alien enthusiasts.

As for me, I choose to believe in the likelihood that life exists beyond the bounds of our own celestial orb simply because it seems small minded and arrogant not to. In the great expanse of the cosmos, can you truly believe that we’re the ONLY life there is?

Maybe you do, which is cool. I just choose to reject your reality and replace it with my own.

[Image credit: Skott/flickr]