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Denver's ET Vote: UFO Commission Proposed

Update 10/3: The measure didn't pass.

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While midterm elections across the country are deciding between Democrats, Republicans and third-party candidates, voters in Denver, Colo., will get a unique opportunity to decide if they want to create a special government commission to study UFOs and extraterrestrial aliens.

The proposal, promoted by UFO conspiracy theorist Jeff Peckman, would create an ET commission charged with drafting "a responsible, common-sense strategy for dealing with issues related to the presence of extraterrestrial beings on Earth."

"It is important because if you're driving down the highway and you saw a crash of a small spaceship and a car or a bus full of kids, you really wouldn't know what to do," Peckman told the Rocky Mountain News. "Do you wait for the hazardous materials experts to show up because of potential contaminants from another solar system? What do you do? People really don't know."

The proposal, Initiative 300, appears on the ballot as follows:

"City and County of Denver Ballot Question Initiated ordinance 300 — shall the voters for the city and county of Denver adopt an initiated ordinance to require the creation of an extraterrestrial affairs commission to help ensure the health, safety, and cultural awareness of Denver residents and visitors in relation to potential encounters or interactions with extraterrestrial intelligent beings or their vehicles, and fund such commission from grants, gifts and donations?"

In 2008, Peckman held a press conference announcing that he had definitive proof of alien visitation in the form of a short video clip shot in Nebraska by a man named Stan Romanek in July 2003. At the time, Romanek was concerned that neighborhood Peeping Toms were looking at his teenage daughters. Romanek placed a video camera inside the house, aimed at a window. He taped several nights, and discovered that the Peeping Tom was not a horny local teen but instead an extraterrestrial that had apparently traveled across the universe to stop by his house and ogle his daughters. The video footage seen at the press conference shows a dark window, behind which a strange, indistinct head pops up and down several times. For Peckman, this is clearly rock-solid proof of aliens.

Peckman claims that the commission will be self-supported from private donations and grants, though if this is true then there seems to be little reason for the commission to have government sanction. Peckman and other like-minded UFO buffs, as private individuals, are free to spend as much time and money as they wish drafting plans for dealing with extraterrestrials.

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Peckman is convinced that Denver — and indeed the entire planet — badly need this UFO commission. Whether Denver voters feel the same remains to be seen. There's a chance that the proposal might pass by default merely through voter apathy — if UFO buffs turn out to vote, and the rest of the public doesn't take it seriously enough to vote against it.

Benjamin Radford is managing editor of Skeptical Inquirer science magazine; his website is www.RadfordBooks.com.

Benjamin Radford
Benjamin Radford is the Bad Science columnist for Live Science. He covers pseudoscience, psychology, urban legends and the science behind "unexplained" or mysterious phenomenon. Ben has a master's degree in education and a bachelor's degree in psychology. He is deputy editor of Skeptical Inquirer science magazine and has written, edited or contributed to more than 20 books, including "Scientific Paranormal Investigation: How to Solve Unexplained Mysteries," "Tracking the Chupacabra: The Vampire Beast in Fact, Fiction, and Folklore" and “Investigating Ghosts: The Scientific Search for Spirits,” out in fall 2017. His website is www.BenjaminRadford.com.