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Like most other biological systems on this planet, humans are largely motivated by self-preservation and conflict avoidance.

As a species, we tend to avoid associating ourselves with anything that will isolate us from the larger group or make us sound strange, or that might draw negative attention from our peers.

In essence, stigma results in a paralysis of communication.

And when left unaddressed, it exerts a chilling influence over society and across generations. This is true whether we are trying to find the cause for diseases, reasons 
for environmental change, or primers for global conflict.

Throughout history, there are times when we, as a society, found it more convenient and socially acceptable to ignore uncomfortable topics. The results were often catastrophic both to our moral fiber and the health of our species. Stigma regarding certain psychological conditions once led to a life sentence in an asylum and forced lobotomies simply because stigma prevented families having a conversation about mental illness.

There
 has been similar social stigma in recent decades around the topic of Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAPs), or UFOs — a topic that has been relegated to conspiracy theorists, B-Movie villains, and the weird uncle no one wants to talk to anymore. As was the case with other topics that hold stigma, many people would rather look the other way than be associated with what’s been labeled “crazy,” or “fringe.”

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Category: Weird Desk