1 November 2022

  A friend sent me the following story from his local newspaper:

    “A U.S. ecologist has claimed that humans are not from Earth, but were put on the planet by aliens tens of thousands of years ago.

   “Dr Ellis Silver points to a number of physiological features to make his case for why humans did not evolve alongside other life on Earth.  They range from humans suffering from bad backs – which he suggests is because we evolved in a world with lower gravity – to getting too easily sunburned and having difficulty giving birth. Dr Ellis says that while the planet meets humans’ needs for the most part, it does not perhaps serve the species’ interests as well as the aliens who dropped us off imagined”.


   Dr. Ellis is, of course, correct in his hypothesis that Humans did not originate on Earth. However, his “proofs” are just circumstantial, and have nothing to do with what actually occurred, and why. Here’s the story, as I’ve heard it all my life.


   Aeons ago, in a galaxy far, far away, an animal species lived . They had a nice planet, which they occupied with a variety of other species. Although they seemed a little more advanced than the others, all lived peacefully together, with few conflicts and no harm done to one another. That state of affairs lasted for a long, long time, and seemed like it might go on forever.

   However, as other populations in other galaxies have found out, genetics can play some mean tricks. One was played on this species by one little mutation of a gene that didn’t seem that important. The first children produced by the couple with the mutation seemed normal enough, as did the generations that followed. It was only when “mutants” started marrying other “mutants,” and producing “double mutants” that the problem became evident.

   Progeny of mutants had always looked just like the rest of the species, and that didn’t change when the so-called “double mutants” arrived. Neither did their general social behavior change. The differences were in the way they thought - and acted on their thoughts. After a few generations, it became clear that new members were somewhat cleverer than their parents and ancestors. They could think up – and then construct, and put into effect – amazing things. This new “technology,” as it came to be called, began to make significant changes in the ways that communities functioned. Some of the changes were deemed “good;” some were questionable. The problem seemed to be not in the development, but in the follow-through: the new generations seemed to have no interest, or even awareness, of what happened after they put their new inventions into operation.

   The differences between “normal” and “genetically challenged” were becoming so evident, that the latter came to be regarded as a race, or subspecies. To differentiate them from pre-mutation stock, they were called Humans – a rough translation into English would be “The Stupids.” Some of the elders became worried. As one old grandfather put it, “These kids have no concept of the future. They just do what they want to do, and I don’t think they even hope that things will turn out all right. The future doesn’t matter. If we let them continue to run wild like this, they could end up precipitating something like climate change – or, worse yet, they could invent political parties! I say we have to take definite action, and soon.”

   It was a long, tough debate but it was finally decided – for the good of the species and the planet – that the mutation had to be completely neutralized. Even though they were talking about children and grandchildren, there was unanimous agreement that all double mutants, and products of double mutants, had to be removed from the population. Any single mutants would be allowed to remain, but only if they were medically deprived of their ability to procreate.

   Travel between galaxies was difficult, but not impossible, in those days, and it was decided that the only safe thing to do was get the Humans completely out of this one. In a small, remote one – with a small, remote solar system - they found a planet that seemed much like their own. They couldn’t bring themselves to exterminate the Humans, and they didn’t want them to just die out, so most hoped their selection would be hospitable. (There were some – like the old grandfather that I mentioned – who harbored secret dreams that those giant things [Humans called them “dinosaurs”] would eat them all the first year. Not many wanted that, however.)

   Back on their own planet, the second phase of the process began – to complete erase the Humans from the record, and to never speak of them, again. In a few generations, Humans were little more than a fairy tale, and soon not even that. With all those remaining who carried the mutant gene unable to procreate, population growth declined significantly. (That proved to be a good thing, in the long run.) Another result was that this species was one of the first to learn that there could be a lot of fun in having sex without having babies. That was eventually memorialized in a national holiday. What they started calling Nature (in their own language, of course) stayed in balance, century after century.

   Although Humans were completely forgotten, in recent years strange transmissions have occasionally been intercepted. Oddly, they were in a language much like their own. The content, however, was mysterious. One was that over 60 percent of the World Bird species were declining in numbers. Another talked about all of Earth’s Wildlife populations plunging by an average of 69% in just under 50 years. Of course, the words World, Earth, Birds and Wildlife meant nothing to them, but it sounded ominous.

   The two latest were even stranger: “The Proud Boys had executed a Coup,” and “Florida is now completely under water.”

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 © Sanford Wilbur 2024