In the early 90’s, maybe even the late 80’s, my friend and I would DL files from a local BBS about UFOs and such. They were on other servers, and overnight they’d propagate out to local BBS’s. I can’t, for the life of me, remember what that was - It might have been the early days of Usenet newsgroups. Probably was. Anyway, these files were fascinating. Mostly text, but they told about gov’t programs, sightings, abductions, etc. My friend & I liked reading them, and we liked to keep an open mind.
Decades later, my mind is now somewhat less ‘open’, in that I don’t believe any of it. The Drake Equation, the Great Filter theory, a better understanding of the true distances involved, and a more pessimistic attitude towards the ability to achieve faster-than-light travel all lead me to believe there are no aliens visiting us. Even approaching the speed of light is problematic. Hell, the inverse-square law makes it unlikely that any other civilization would even have a reason to visit us - all those radio waves going out don’t really reach as far as some of us think. Of course, radio waves don’t travel faster-than-light either, so they couldn’t even have traveled all that far.
The recent video from navy jets released by the US gov’t has been gone over and reasonable, likely explanations have been given. Nothing earlier than that has proven to be convincing, either.The more you think about it, the more unlikely alien visitors are. And as smithsb illustrated in the XKCD comic above, even the overwhelming number of people who carry cell phone/cameras with them now have not added any new, convincing evidence. I’m pretty convinced that anyone seeing UFOs are seeing craft of human construction or natural phenomenon, are mistaken, or are lying.
My friend mentioned in the first paragraph hasn’t got there with me, and I don’t think he will. He watches those “ghost hunter” shows, still seeks out UFO info, and believes some of the more problematic conspiracy theories floating around politics today. I don’t know why, starting from almost the same point, we would diverge like that, but we have. In his heart, I’m pretty sure he believes there may be ghosts, and that one day soon we will develop warp drive and be Star Trekkin’ across the universe. There’s a lot of “agreeing to disagree” going on these days.