Spirit-WWW: NewsGateway Article <news:alt.paranet.ufo.131426>
Date: Mon, 02 Feb 1998 09:38:20 -0800
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Subject: ET's: What If They Liked The Taste Of Human Flesh?
All Follow-Up: Re: ET's: What If They Liked The Taste Of Human Flesh?
Sent in from Francisco Lopez
EXTRATERRESTRIALS: What If They Liked The Taste Of Human Flesh?
The following opinion piece was originally published in the Globe &
Mail, Canada's largest national newspaper, in August 1991...
EXTRATERRESTRIALS: What If They
Liked The Taste Of Human Flesh?
by Dr. Michael J. West
The possibility that life might exist elsewhere in the universe has
fascinated human beings ever since our ancestors first gazed into the
starry skies. Could life also have arisen on other worlds, or is the
Earth unique? Are there other intelligent beings in the cosmos with
whom we might someday make contact?
As long ago as 400 B.C., the Greek philosopher Metrodorus of
Chios reasoned that "It goes against Nature, in a large field to grow
only one shaft of wheat, and in an infinite universe to have only one
living world." Such speculations have sparked lively debate among
astronomers, and fueled the imaginations of innumerable science
The idea that human beings may someday travel among the stars in
search of extraterrestrial life remains only a dream at present, far
beyond the capabilities of existing technology. Yet it is certainly
conceivable that advanced civilizations of other worlds, if they
exist, may already have learned to navigate the vast expanses of
interstellar space, and perhaps already set out to explore the cosmos.
The possibility, however remote, that highly-advanced extraterrestrial
beings might someday come to Earth raises some interesting
philosophical and ethical questions. What if one day extraterrestrials
really DO arrive here? Just imagine the possibilities....
What if extraterrestrial beings someday came to Earth and found that
they liked the taste of human flesh? Would alien "farmers" raise herds
of human "livestock" to be slaughtered for meat? Might men, women, and
children end up baked, broiled, or barbecued to satisfy some hungry
extraterrestrial's appetite? Perhaps certain "strains" of humans
beings would be selectively bred to produce especially tender meat.
Suppose extraterrestrials discovered that they liked the taste of
human milk. Might female humans be imprisoned on alien "dairy farms"
where they would be regularly impregnated so that their breast milk
could be gathered for little alien children to drink? After these
women "cows" were no longer productive milk producers for their alien
owners, might their fate be similar to that of dairy cows here on
Earth -- ground up to make a few kilograms of human hamburger?
What if it became fashionable on some distant planet to wear
coats made from human skin? A "human fur" coat made from the scalps of
a few dozen earthlings might keep some fashion-conscious
extraterrestrial warm from the chilly night air on a far away world.
Might extraterrestrial "trappers" someday lay traps for unsuspecting
humans walking the streets of our cities in order to satisfy the
demand for human pelts?
What if leading extraterrestrial scientists and doctors began
performing experiments on live human subjects in order to advance
their own medical knowledge? Perhaps they would undertake large
medical studies, infecting hundreds or thousands of human "guinea
pigs" with their most dreaded diseases in the hopes of finding a
Many unfortunate humans might spend their entire lives imprisoned in
tiny cages in alien laboratories, enduring years of painful
experiments before death finally ended their misery. Others might be
dissected while still alive so that alien vivisectors could study
their anatomy or experiment with new medical techniques.
Although such experiments would cause tremendous stress,
suffering, and eventually death for their human subjects, perhaps
alien researchers would simply ignore their cries of pain, convinced
that human experimentation is essential for medical progress. Alien
lives are obviously worth more than any human life, because as every
highly-intelligent extraterrestrial knows, those dumb humans aren't
really capable of anything but the most primitive feelings and
To an advanced alien civilization it might seem that sacrificing
thousands or millions of human lives for medical research is a small
price to pay if it could eventually save the life of even just one
cute little extraterrestrial child. What if the idea that human beings
possess fundamental rights of life and liberty seemed as absurd to
them as the idea of animals having these same rights seems to many
What if the Earth were to become a favorite vacation spot for
extraterrestrial hunters who would come here for the "sport" of
hunting humans? Is it possible that killing other living creatures
simply for fun is a favorite pasttime enjoyed by all advanced
civilizations in the universe? Will future generations of human beings
live in fear of having their heads blown off by some extraterrestrial
yahoo with a gun? Might the walls of alien hunters' homes someday be
decorated with the heads of humans they had "bagged" while on a
hunting trip to Earth?
If we human beings believe that we have the right to be treated
humanely by any extraterrestrial beings that we may someday encounter,
even those more intelligent or technologically advanced than us, do we
not then also have a moral obligation to likewise treat other sentient
creatures that we encounter with similar compassion and respect? Does
this not also apply to our treatment of other animals with whom we
share our planet?
As Albert Einstein, the greatest astrophysicist of this
century (and himself a vegetarian) said:
"Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of
compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and
If extraterrestrials ever come to Earth, let's hope that they will
have developed a deeper sense of compassion and respect for all living
creatures than Earth's supposedly most intelligent species seems to
have developed so far.
Michael West is a professor of astronomy and physics at Saint Mary's
University, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.
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