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Alien Contact Illegal in US 97

Hard_Code writes "Apparently it is illegal for United States citizens to make contact with aliens and their vehicles. " This is bizarre as hell. Not much in the way of proof, but its still pretty interesting. I'll definitely be giving extra terrestrials the silent treatment next time they try to abduct me. Update: 10/30 05:55 by CT : several people pointed out that this is an Urban Legend. Pretty cool.
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Alien Contact Illegal in US

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  • No way I can say my thoughts on the government in here without cursing in all caps for 5 paragraphs, so instead I'll say that the fact that this was ever a law is just another sign that this country needs to be invaded, taken over, and then reclaimed by it's people, who then form a new and better government.
  • by Manifest ( 50758 )
    That might be correct .. but the point is .. Why in the first place was this law made in the first place, when the officials were steadfastedly denying any alien encounter and were ridiculing pple reported that they did make contact with aliens.. ??
  • (fyi, you can use the <TT> tag to print fixed-width text. Not as good as <PRE>, but it makes it a little easier to format stuff.)
  • Title 14, Section 1211 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR 1211 "Extraterrestrial Exposure") stipulates that it is a crime to be in contact with extraterrestrial beings or their spacecraft. This was repealed on April 26, 1991. It did exist; if you have any doubts, go to the library, find the CFR from pre '91, and look it up. For real laughs, also take the time to research the discussions which preceded the repeal.
  • by Ermit ( 27328 )
    This is really pathetic, Every time I read posts a little too late, the pages are /.'d. It's amazing to think what we could do to any box in the world simply by posting a story.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    <pre> tags would allow somone to do something silly, like post a 32,675 character wide line. Because Slashdot puts posts on the article page, this fscks with the entire page layout. It's still possible to do this with the allowed tags, but it doesn't seem to happen too often anymore (possibly because these posts get moderated down).
  • Yes, but does talking to aliens count as 'export'? If it does, then people in US can't talk to aliens securely (without breaking the law) , but those in the rest of the world can.

    The thing that worries me is that the US government has developed the same paternalistic attitude to other cultures that has lead to the downfall of empires (including the British empire).
  • There is only one thing that bothers me with this story.

    What do Rob mean by "NEXT time they try to abduct me"
    When was last time ???
  • Totally off topic, but hey....

    I took the TGV from Paris to Genève and experienced exactly the phenomenon you describe--the ride was so smooth it felt like I was going slower than on an Amtrak train at home (which typically don't go much above 110 km/h). I had to do some careful estimation using my watch and the spacing of the telegraph poles along the route to convince myself otherwise.

  • 211.101 Applicability. The provisions of this part apply to all NASA manned and unmanned space missions...

    I could dismiss this whole controversy as a tempest in a teacup if the above passage contained the word "only", so as to read: "The provisions of this part apply only to all NASA manned and unmanned space missions..."

    I read it. There is nothing confusing about it and there is absolutely no need to insert the word "only" in the text. The section applies to NASA missions. It does not apply to you and me. If you think that it does, you don't understand Federal Regulations. (You should note that this is a regulation, not a law.) If anyone tried to deprive you of your liberty on the basis of this section, any judge would release you faster than you could say "habeus corpus".

    If they want to illegally keep you far away from daylight, they don't need this bogus section to do it.
  • If you want to get somewhere fast, go via train or plane. Otherwise, be patient.

    No. Who are you to tell us what to do?

    I bow to the will of the majority, so if something gets a majority vote in the community then I'll obey it, even if I disagree with it. That's what belonging to a community is all about.

    But the speed limit on motorways was never put to the vote, and they don't dare put it to the vote because they know they'd lose. That's why the normal free-flowing speed on British motorways is over 85 mph, despite a legal limit of 70. (Even the Metropolitan Police recommend raising the limit, without effect.) In a democracy, when politicians don't listen, their laws get ignored.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Speaking of reliability.... WTF is that site?
    Doesn't seem to be very reliable to me...
  • by Anonymous Coward
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I agree that this has been removed from the CFR so it's all moot. Just for argument's sake, according to the terms of the regulation, it only applied to NASA space missions. The NASA Administrator had no authority to quarantine anyone who made contact with aliens on their own. It seems perfectly reasonable to me for the NASA Administrator to have quarantine authority over their missions.

    Here's the relevant section:

    1211.101 - Applicability The provisions of this part to all NASA manned and unmanned space missions which land or come within the atmospheric envelope of a celestial body and return to the Earth.

  • True, and yet, many viruses frequently mutate, such as the common cold. And, as for not being similar, that depends on what theory you accept. Some would say that certain conditions must exist for a planet/whatever to develop life of any sort (I am not one of them, I'm simply playing devil's advocate). As such, it might also be argued that there is a good chance that these aliens would be quite similar to us.

    However, I believe that it isn't a serious threat for an entirely different matter: the incredibly unlikelihood of aliens showing up on our doorstep, much less ones genetically similar to us, is enough to outweigh any paranoia about alien epidemics wiping us out. So, in a way, I suppose I agree with at least *part* of your point.
  • I know Rob can't personally verify every story before he posts it.

    It takes hardly any time to look up a law. This would be the simplest type of story to investigate. He should do at least some research before posting a story.

    It is an interesting story, however, because this law did exist for some time. A good example of how the government feels they should treat us.

  • by Mr. X ( 17716 )
    The article says the law isn't just about encountering aliens, but having contact with anything extraterrestrial. (ie. the MOON)
  • Anybody remember the sci-fi story, "The Big Front Yard"? I read itas a kid and I loved it.

    The moral of the story: if a race is intelligent enough for practical interstellar flight, it's a fair bet that they're intelligent enough to pick who they want to contact. In fact, they're probably better qualified than any government.
  • It is true that viruses mutate frequently, but mutation requires energy. Energy that can only be acquired from a susceptible host species. If the virus does not have any energy input, then it will not live long enough to mutate enough to be able to infect a native species.

    As for the genetic similarity issue you raised, I think the notion that the systems by which life was established on earth are unique is hogwash. That is to say I agree with you, in non-devil's advocate mode, completely :). But to argue the point (i.e. to preach to the choir :), I think we can see from the vast diversity of species and methods of development on this planet, that the traditional formula for making life is not consistent or uncommon.

    My favorite example of this is that of the bizarre species that live in deep oceans. They live off of boiling hot water and sulfur, which are two things that would kill almost any other species on the planet. At this point, the only thing that can be consistently said to be necessary for life as we know it is good old Water, and hydrocarbons. Now, it may very well be that these are not fundamental requirements, but it's all we can go off for now. Even if those are fundamental requirements, water and carbon are all over the universe (take a glance at a passing comet for example :).

    So, life is out there. The only question in my mind is whether that life is capable of communicating with us and whether it would even want to if it could :).


  • If you think it's such a big issue, why not try to bring down the government over it?
  • before anybody flames, I saw this on Ars Technica, and it was too bizarre not to submit. Usually I don't submit things and then see them here days later and kick myself.

    In any case, even though it was repealed, it is interesting that it even made it into law in the first place!
  • From the article:

    "On October 5, 1982, Dr. Brain T. Clifford of the Pentagon announced at a press conference ("The Star []", New York, Oct. 5, 1982) that contact between U.S. citizens and extra-terrestrials or their vehicles is strictly illegal."

    I saw this link on memepool a little earlier. Notice the reference here: The Star. That tabloid newspaper you try not to look like you're reading when you're in the checkout line at the supermarket? Any article that uses that rag as a "source" is worthess.
  • Strictly speaking, in the UK it is illegal to receive any radio communication for which the broadcaster does not have a license from the government (Wireless Telegraphy Act).

    Taken to the extreme, this includes shortwave stations such as Voice of America, Radio France International etc. Theoretically it also includes extraterrestrial transmissions and RF noise from other stars!

    Some bands, such as walkie-talkies, are open to all, but they're few and far between.

    Unsurprisingly this law is only very rarely enforced (you can buy all-band radios and set up antennas at home pretty much as you wish). In the 1960's two suspected pirate radio DJ's were fined because they had a pirate radio bumper sticker- thus they must have listened to the radio station; although there was insufficient evidence to prove they were DJs.


  • Title 14 USC applies to the Cost Guard *not* NASA.

    NASA is under Title 42, Chapter 26 - National Space Program.

    Some1 had too much time on thier hands to try and fake the text of a law :P

  • NASA is undet 14 CFR not USC, my bad :P
  • Well, i guess this means I can't e-mail my congressmen anymore :)
  • by pen ( 7191 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @10:55AM (#1575213)
    I guess I better not post on Slashdot anymore...

    P.S. Very interesting, I got some errors when I tried to post this message - my browser refused to talk to (tried all 3 IPs). THEY'RE TRYING TO SILENCE ME!


  • Stupid/senseless/blinkered/over-zealous laws are nothing new. As always, just ignore them.

    Heck, on British motorways, only about 15% of drivers obey the speed limit. That's not because we're a nation of anarchists, but simply because there is no other recourse (this was never put to democratic vote, and politicians won't listen anyway), and stupid laws deserve contempt.

    I sure hope that nobody who comes face-to-face with an extra-terrestrial is so totally lacking in gray matter that the first thing on their mind is whether contact is allowed by some politician. Sheesh. We'd lose all universe-cred.
  • I just checked out the Code of Federal regulations and that subsection they specify as containing this law doesn't exist. Take a look here [] for Title 14. It lists all the regs governing NASA.
  • by Kid Zero ( 4866 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @10:56AM (#1575216) Homepage Journal
    let's see if I can copy this right..

    This article says it is legal again, since 1991.

    Which means it's been legal to talk to me since I was, oh, 23 or so.
  • Just to let people know, "The Star" is a tabloid, so I wouldn't trust any of this information. However, like most tabloid articles, it's pretty humorous. :)
  • by kaphka ( 50736 ) <> on Saturday October 30, 1999 @11:01AM (#1575218)
    You can find Title 14, Section 1211 (or rather, the lack thereof) at r/14p1211.htm#14p1211s [] .

    I know Rob can't personally verify every story before he posts it. But shouldn't you be a little more careful with a particularly implausible and inflammatory one, like this one? It took me ten minutes on Google to find this information.

    (I hope this isn't a double post... my first version of this comment mysteriously vanished, along with about twenty other posts.)
  • by PD ( 9577 ) says that the regulation in question was repealed in 1991. It's now OK to touch aliens in any way you like.

  • by Tobor the Eighth Man ( 13061 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @11:02AM (#1575220)
    Well, in my opinion, I believe that this may actually be a good idea, to some degree. Imagine what happened to the native cultures when the Conquistadors landed in South America, but on a much larger scale. Any viral bodies that these "visitors" might be carrying could have devastating effects to humans.

    Now, while I don't think that this is necessary legislation (if indeed it's actually in existence), I think that it may indeed be a good idea to at least ask those aliens to wash their hands before you let them in your house.
  • by breser ( 16790 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @10:56AM (#1575221) Homepage
    Title 14, Section 1211 CFR does not even exist. Take a look for yourself [].

    *sigh* repost because /. lost my original post.

  • by hadron ( 139 )
    If the speed limits were higher, people would still feel the need to go faster than them. We'd end up with a lot more accidents.

    Read up on 'kinetic energy', and how it is proportional to the square of the speed.

    If you want to get somewhere fast, go via train or plane. Otherwise, be patient.

  • by breser ( 16790 )
    An even better question is why is almost everyone posting at Score 2?
  • I'm Agent Manhine and my Supervisor ( Agent Black ) Was able to confirm that this is indead ligit.

    That 1 year jail term is realy a cover so we can recrute the best of those contacteas and "reeducate" the rest.
  • by oblom ( 105 )
    On top of that my comment got eaten.
  • by Kid Zero ( 4866 )
    well... it did say they were reserving it again, and it was allegedly repealed in 1991.

    however the phone number of the contact person on the link I gave "is no longer in service"
  • by Manifest ( 50758 )
    That makes it more interesting.. That is taking things to the extreme.. Wow.. That means that SETI@Home if done then would have been illegal.

    "The lame excuse offered by NASA as a sugar coating for this bitter pill is that extra-terrestrials might have a virus that could wipe out the human race"
    Dont tell me that EM waves can carry viruses.. man that is a cool idea that only the Govt would have tried out and maybe succedded.

    Am I being a bit too X-philish ??
  • More information, and a scanned image of the document signed by Richard Truly repealing the ET exposure law.
  • by quonsar ( 61695 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @11:08AM (#1575230) Homepage

    and here I am on my way out the door to meet the ambassador from Arbarkulous Maalb for lunch.

    "Rex unto my cleeb, and thou shalt have everlasting blort." - Zorp 3:16

  • by 8Complex ( 10701 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @01:09PM (#1575231)
    1211 Removed in 1991 and I think its a page next to it 19259, but who the hell would have a copy of this thing on their shelf with THAT many pages... e.cgi?WAISdocID=203086071+14+0+0&WAISactio n=retrieve

    That is the line where I found it... If you're too lazy to go see it I'll paste that small section here...

    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1991

    14 CFR
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .56 FR
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Page
    Chapter V
    1204.501 (a) revised........................................... ............57592
    1204.503 (b), (f)(3)(i)(D), (ii), (g) and (i) revised.............57592
    1204.504 (a), (e)(3)(ii)(B), (iii), (f) and (h) revised...........57592
    1204.1400--1204.1407 (Subpart 14) Revised................35812
    1205 Removed........................................... ...................14191
    1209.100--1209.104 (Subpart 1) Revised........................8910
    1211 Removed........................................... ....................19259
    1213.102 (a) introductory text revised..............................66787

    Hope the HTML works, I'm not too familiar with it on /.

    [after preview] Ok... so you can't use PRE on the board? What a pain in the ass... So I formatted with Period's by hand... hope you all can read it :-)

    - 8Complex
  • by phliar ( 87116 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @01:14PM (#1575232) Homepage
    14 CFR 1211 100 through 108 was removed by Richard Truly on 26 Apr 1991 (which in itself struck many people as odd, since theoretically only Congress can repeal laws

    There's a difference between Laws and Regulations, and CFR means Code of Federal Regulations. (14 CFR, for example, contains all the Federal Aviation Regulations: Parts 1 - 199.) Regulations are a civil, not a criminal, matter.

    You cannot be imprisoned for violating a regulation, but other sanctions and fines can be applied. But you don't necessarily have the usual constitutional protections of due process etc. in a regulatory process.

    The CFR's tend to be very technical, and the average congress person has no hope of understanding them. Try browsing Title 14 []. For example, 91.175 - Takeoff and Landing Under IFR.

  • by Scurrilous Knave ( 66691 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @01:37PM (#1575234) Homepage

    Hey, I mean, If you saw an alien who needed to use your phone what would YOU do?

    Probably the same thing Ed O'Neill did, and tell him about 1-800-COLLECT. Save fifty percent to all calls in the Orion Arm, sixty after Galactic Midnight.
  • Even if aliens where similar to us physically, that doesn't mean that their DNA would be particularly similar (assuming they had any).
  • I'm going to be very unscientific, because I have no data on hand. However there have been numerous stories published in the major Western-US newspapers (where the speed limits tend to be raised) that show that the average speed over the limit decreases when limits are raised. People still speed, but by less. The claim here is that most people only speed by a few mph, while a handful still drive 15 mph over the limit. This frees up the law enforcement teams to ticket those drivers who are most dangerous, without making judgments about moderate speeders.

    Take this with a grain of salt, as I don't have any studies or figures onhand to cite.
  • The way I see it, the only reason that law was ever in effect was because of the aliens that have already infiltrated the United States government, and wish to cover up their activities. They did this because the United States is simply too destructive, and they knew the Americans would kill them. Now, here in Canada, we can make contact with aliens any time we want, and we only have alien governments in Saskatchewan. :)
  • by wesmills ( 18791 )
    (Hope this reply goes much for fully bug-testing on the devel machine)

    Ah, nice catch. I'd been wondering what the major difference was between CFR and say, USC (United States Code) was.

    Question, however: Presidential Executive Orders take effect when published in the Federal Register. Is this the same as the FR in CFR? And, if, so, why do these executive orders carry the same "weight" as law? Is it because everyone's afraid to tick off the President?

    (Feel free to reply via e-mail if this is too off-topic)


  • If you actually read the text of the law, which was repealed about 8 years ago (see other posts), it's quite clear that it's a provision for quarantine of things which have been in contact with another planet, i.e. a space probe which returns from mars, a manned mission to the moon, etc, on the off chance they could bring back viral or other contamination (the original apollo 11 astronauts were quarantined for exactly this reason, probably under that same law).

    Nowhere does it mention contact with extraterrestrial BEINGS (maybe the confusion came from the use of the phrase "extra-terrestrial" in the (perfectly clear) sense of "beyond earth", but was interpreted in the E.T. sense by a credulous reader.
  • Okay, okay, I give you that point. It's more likely to not have many similarities on any level between us and hyperintelligent shades of blue from 3 parsecs away.

    ... But I'm still not letting the buggers in my house. ;)
  • On venus it might be 16 days local time =)
  • Yes, I am! Thanks for reminding me. :)
    "'Is not a quine' is not a quine" is a quine.
  • > I know Rob can't personally verify every story
    > before he posts it. But shouldn't you be a
    > little more careful with a particularly
    > implausible and inflammatory one, like this one?
    > It took me ten minutes on Google to find this
    > information.

    Oh, I don't know - I don't know Rob, but my guess is he doesn't have ten minutes, I know some days I don't, and I'm on vacation compared to him.

    Just my factorial of five over number base used by the Babylonians cents.
  • by twinpot ( 40956 )
    The Germans seem to cope on the remaining stretches of unlimited autobahnen. It is actually quite relaxing driving at 220kmh _without_ worrying about being nicked for speeding. Plus, drivers are _way_ better there than in Holland with its 100/120kmh limit on motorways (if you see someone doing something really dumb on an autobahn like pulling out in front of someone without looking, you are almost guaranteed they are dutch).

    However, most drivers sit at around 140-160kmh - that is a comfortable limit for many drivers/cars.

    (My apologies to the Dutch on this list, but driving here is frightening).

    But if you want to go really fast on land (320kmh), get on a French TGV. Problem is, it doesn't feel fast ;-)
  • I don't think you read it too carefully at all:

    1211.101 Applicability. The provisions of this part apply to all NASA manned and unmanned space missions...

    I could dismiss this whole controversy as a tempest in a teacup if the above passage contained the word "only", so as to read: "The provisions of this part
    apply only to all NASA manned and unmanned space missions..." However, it does not contain that one little word which would have made such a big
    difference. If the government was suddenly faced with the accomplished fact of an undeniable overt E.T. visitation, this regulation could therefore, be
    construed as being applicable to all space missions, NASA or non NASA, whether of terrestrial or extra-terrestrial origin. As it stands, this law is
    applicable to UFO contact. The meaning would have to be stretched, but the built-in loophole does exist.

    I agree with that paragraph. If you read it at all carefully, you would have remembered that paragraph, and said something about it.

    Just because they purposely worded the law in a confusing manner doesn't change what they would have been able to do with it.

  • I remember a study regarding the speed limits. It showed that for the most part, people find 70-75mph a "comfortable" speed to drive.

    When the speed limits were maxed at 55mph in the US, the majority of people still drove 70mph or so on the interstates. Now that the limits are 70mph in most places, people haven't increased their speed to 90mph (as many critics of rasing the limit said would happen) but rather kept in the 70-75 range.

    Of course, there are still a small minority who drive 90 but they would do that regardless of lower limtis.

    Now the police can focus on busting those drivers who are on one end of the bell curve, not everyone who is under the fattest part. (And people who hang out with aliens, of course. ;-)

    Number of accidents are at their lowest when everyone travels at more or less the same speed.
  • All I did was look up federal register on yahoo and it pointed me to the governments official search engine for the register. Just took a couple minutes...


  • by quonsar ( 61695 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @11:12AM (#1575251) Homepage

    Alright, about ten minutes ago there were about two dozen comments-- where the hell did they all go??

    Can you say "alien abduction"?

    "Rex unto my cleeb, and thou shalt have everlasting blort." - Zorp 3:16

  • This is just my opinon completely unbacked by any sort of scientific study. However I believe it to be reasonably rational and logical so here goes...

    The reason that the viruses the conquistadors brought with them were a problem was because ultimately the natives and the spanish were biologically very similar. The genetic differences between ethnicities are very minor and viruses don't require much if any adaptation to jump from one to the other.

    An alien virus would be adapted to effect the biology of alien species. The likelyhood that an alien species would be genetically similar to humans is INCREDIBLY slim. Thus the virus would get here, find no suitable host, and either die or go into some sort of hibernation state.


  • In some backwater, unenlightened regions, any sexual position other than heterosexual missionary (man on top, woman on bottom facing up) is illegal. This isn't something that people are normally arrested for, but it still happens from time to time as an excuse to imprison a known homosexual or BDSM type or whatever who speaks ill of their government. It also leads to horrific possibilities for the religiously-inclined leaders to deal with transsexuals, for example (define 'man' or 'woman,' and someone is always going to disagree with you since there are so many notions which are completely contradictory except in the most trivial cases).

    Want to know what some of these backwater regions are? Good portions of United States and Britain, for starters. There's a good list on Age Of Consent [] which lists when sexual relationships of varying natures become legal, if ever, though it doesn't list which positions are legal IIRC, though I know for a fact that in Virginia, everything but male-dominated missionary is illegal (you can get a heterosexual couple jailed with the right contacts by claiming that they enacted in fellatio or cunningulus, for example).
    "'Is not a quine' is not a quine" is a quine.

  • This makes me ponder .. why was that law made ??
    That is as long back as 1969 isn't it ?? Doesn't this mean that even then they thought that Aliens can contact men .. so much so that a law was made ??

    Hey on second thought.. that also opens up the chance that maybe, maybe even as way back as '69 Earthlings had made contact with Aliens.. oh maybe it is the other way around !

  • by margaret ( 79092 )
    well... it did say they were reserving it again, and it was allegedly repealed in 1991.

    "Reserved" just means that section is empty. At least that's what the johns hopkins university government library librarian told me and a friend when we went in there to look it up four years ago. I'm sure she thought we were nuts. My friend and I were fresh from reading some conspiracy tripe on the internet, and when we saw "reserved" we thought Ha! They're hiding it from us! The librarian calmly flipped to the back of the book where there was a list of changes, and it said that section had been removed. So now that the section is empty, it's reserved.
  • by gad_zuki! ( 70830 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @11:22AM (#1575256)
    Right now the ACLU is fighting to keep movies like E.T. and Starman, which glamorize criminal alien activities, from being taken off the shelves at local video stores.

    "1211, talking to aliens is no fun!" chanted an angry crowd outside of Blockbuster today. Debbie Smith, local protester, had this to say, "Look at Drew Barrymore, she played with that little brown alien and look what happened to her - drugs, booze, sex, is this what we're trying to tell our young people?!?"

    ACLU spokesman Kent Harris replied, "Talking to aliens is every man and woman's right. George Washington was a mason and all they do is talk to aliens, well sometimes they talk to scientologists but thats about the same thing."

  • by Chris Marlowe ( 79058 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @11:26AM (#1575257)

    The point about the Star being a tabloid is well-taken. Certainly it explains the bizarre slant given the story.

    The regulation in question was the enforcement for the biological-isolation régime observed after Apollo 11, 12, and (I think) 14. Astronauts returning from the moon had to wear respirators and (at first) suits; the command module had to be sealed, and anything exposed in the course of getting the astronauts out of it disinfected; the crew had to spend a couple of weeks in a negative-pressure lab; workers exposed to moon rocks were also put in the lab.

    It was done, not because anyone thought it likely that there were Moon Germs, but because if there were, it'd look stupid not to have taken precautions.

    As with any quarantine, this had the force of law, and the power to enforce it resided, not in the Public Health Service or USAMRIID, but NASA, in the person of its administrator. That's all the reg said.

  • Hey moderators, why's this offtopic? The post was about something similar, stupid unenforceable laws and stuff. Jeeze.
    "'Is not a quine' is not a quine" is a quine.
  • Ok to touch them any way you like? You better check their genitalia and age, just to be sure. We still have other laws, you know. :-)

  • Heh, and that was supposed to be posted as AC. Slashdot is *really* quirky tonight. ;) Sorry for any offense towards moderators. Was just checking the system for bugs (no, really! :)
    "'Is not a quine' is not a quine" is a quine.
  • This was reported in the Dallas Morning News [] about 6 years ago (and the Times Herald earlier than that). 14 CFR 1211 100 through 108 was removed by Richard Truly on 26 Apr 1991 (which in itself struck many people as odd, since theoretically only Congress can repeal laws, but that's another matter).

    The reason the section says "RESERVED" is because of the text of the repeal document, which specifically stated that 14 CFR 1211.100-108 would be "removed and reserved." It is common practice to do this, since if the section were not reserved, laws below it would need to be renumbered in keeping with the CFR's layout.

    FWIW: This law was probably passed as a security measure in case we did find anything and ticked them off badly. I suppose the government thought the only way they could get the people who were "contacted" to come in for examination was by brute force.


  • Get a grip! A 1969 law, already repealed, that allows NASA to quarrentine people who, while on a NASA mission, encountered extraterrestrial material -- how is this an example?

    I don't know if you even bothered to read the text of the law that was posted, but it clearly applied only to NASA mission s despite the paranoid ravings of the authors of the page.
  • How nice to hear. Don't forget that it was Nov. 3rd, 1883 that the Supreme Court declared Native Americans "aliens". With my being a Miami "Injun", just replying to my post would be illegal, and also touching my car.... Who would have thought that an alien would drive a Ford Taurus. Hey, I'll have that meter maid arrested! ~Jason Maggard "It's almost dawn and the cops are gone, let's all get dixie fried!"
  • That this story was updated nine hours before it was posted?

    Let's do the Time Warp agaaaaaaainnnn...

    Zontar The Mindless,

  • I think tha aliens would know better than the Conquistadors that land in America (they landed in all America). They may find some dangerous viruses for them too..
  • by Mith ( 43921 )
    Isn't Quebec the 'Alien' province?
  • Slashdot has a history of welcoming alien contributors (such as the one who says 'meeept')

    If this story were true (which it isn't), Rob would have to stop the alien-generated posts being viewed by US citizens.

    OTOH, the aliens I talk to use strong (>4096 bit) encryption , so US people can't talk to them legally anyway (In Europe we can use any key length we feel like).


    (Apologies to T. Pratchett)
  • Well all I can say is the part giving them the ability to quarintine contactees is VERY logical. After all you don't want to wipe out the population because of some nasty alien virus. Yeah I know it sounds like something from a bad sci-fi movie but it is something to be taken seriously. Especially if you consider the fact that a virus from earth survived 3 years on the moon and was brought back home by the Apollo astronauts.

    This highly important aspect seems to have been ignored by the author, hoax or not.
  • Note that 14 CFR lists Part 1211 as [Reserved]. Note also that this page suggests that "NASA is removing 14 CFR Part 1211 since it has served its purpose and is no longer in keeping with current policy."

    So it might be legal now, but there were 22 years that made "ET Phone Home" illegal in America.

    So maybe Steven Spielberg was encouraging kids to break federal law if they encounter wrinkly aliens?


  • by lawn_ornament ( 99174 ) on Saturday October 30, 1999 @11:34AM (#1575272) Homepage
    of this, I think this little play is appropriate:

    "ET phone home... ET PHONE HOME!!"
    "Hell no.. I'm not allowed to have any sort of contact with you, I'll be damned if I let you use my phone!"

    Hey, I mean, If you saw an alien who needed to use your phone what would YOU do?

  • What is the age of consent on Mars? I would imagine that it's something like 8 years old or thereabouts.

    (Before taking exception, engage orbit period calculater)

  • by Signal 11 ( 7608 )
    Yes, don't you know that everybody who's made contact with aliens either winds up in counselling or disappears? That's strictly government only. If you have an ET in your basement you'd better return him now before the natives find out!


"There is no distinctly American criminal class except Congress." -- Mark Twain