Calling occupants of interplanetary craft, we – the gays and the queers of earth – are your friends. This is the message I’d like beamed to KIC 8462852, a star approximately 1500 light years from here, that is currently displaying a strange pattern of dimming that’s causing some intrigue amongst international scientific communities. KIC 8462852 could be acting peculiarly for all sorts of reasons: yet, with every new theory tested, the boffins still can’t get to the bottom of what’s going on, and up until now none of the expected explanations pan out. Alien civilisation is, apparently, always a last ditch hypothesis when explaining cosmic anomalies, but in science you can’t rule anything out until it's been tested. Go figure.
Personally I don’t need proof that life exits in other parts of the known universe (never mind all the stuff we don’t know) for me it’s much more a case of it is out there and it’s only a matter of time before some kind of cosmic contact is made. I just hope I live long enough to see it. My only worry is that when the little green/purple/see-through people pop down to planet earth for a butchers, they choose to stop off at some huge edifice, or official building filled with important men or capitalists. What kind of message would the privileged power brokers send about the human race to a curious intergalactic neighbour?
And as soon as you start to think about it all sorts of questions pop up: might aliens have sex, gender and sexuality? Would aliens be capable of homophobia – would they understand and/or tolerate the homophobia here on earth? Or is our little planet so small and insignificant that any sensible alien race would just ignore us the way we ignore a fly on a windowpane? I can only hope that when ET makes a house call they happen upon a decent member of the human race. I am watching the skies and keeping my fingers crossed that the aliens don’t pass us by.