COMMENTARY: Why is the UFO community so divisive?

While general skepticism is key to studying anomalies like the UFO phenomenon, so is an open-mindedness to accept possibilities that seem out of the ordinary when compared to the status quo of science and general belief.

In the UFO community there has always been this intrinsic divide, which has basically done the job of debunkers and skeptics just by planting this seed of opposition from the start. For every story, case and expert there will be someone running it down, denying or attacking the credibility. Now the idea of “questioning everything” is a great journalistic instinct and something that was covered in “Punk rock and UFOs: Cryptozoology meets Anarchy”, and the idea of the division in Ufology was covered in “Punk rock and UFOs: True Believers,” all it takes is just a stroll down any social media platform to see the constant in fighting between believers and non. Twitter, Instagram comments and especially Facebook pages, especially those groups dedicated to specific areas of research are rampant with insults and constant back-and-forth.

The AATIP Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Group on Facebook features believers, experiencers, witnesses, researchers and those interested in the subject, and also daily battles between members. Debate in the UFO community is welcome, but it seems lately that the debates are more heated and antagonistic than usual. Take Jeremy Corbell’s latest doc “Bob Lazar: Area 51 & Flying Saucers,” for example. Lazar has always been a polarizing figure to say the least, and this film has opened up a firestorm of discussion.

To play devil’s advocate, let’s pretend Lazar is telling the truth and he was pegged to work for the government BECAUSE of his unorthodox education and mindset. OK, let’s see the other side and condemn his credentials or lack of, and use his elusive proof of degree and employment to discredit his story. Why is this so hard to land in the middle here, since the only person who really knows for a fact is Lazar himself. The ability to see the other side of the argument is important here, and this doesn’t mean concede your point, but at least be able to be open-minded about the opposing argument.

In a previous interview with Rick Doty (another divisive topic/ figure) made a point that is proven every day on every message board, Facebook wall or comment section on an article.

“The UFO community does more harm to themselves with all the in-fighting and discredits than anyone from the outside could do,” Doty said.