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This is partly because it is not clear what we would fight them over, and partly because they may have an alarmingly high TECHLEVEL, making war with them a dangerously one-sided proposition. See COSMIC BACKGROUND HISTORY.2) Aliens with Forehead Ridges.
Much more common - especially in HOLLYWOOD SCIFI - than Really Aliens, these are species that look almost exactly like Earth Humans, except for some distinguishing visible feature such as, well, forehead ridges, or odd-shaped ears, or whatever.
More specific and etymologically correct than sentient.
Still less common than that term, but has been used by multiple writers..
It would be expecting much of anyone to guess that an oyster were alive if he came across one (for the first time) with a closed shell.
Could a glance at a clump of trees in midwinter, when all are standing leafless, easily distinguish those which are alive and will bear leaves in the spring from those which are dead and will not?
Yet what if the caterpillar were crawling over the trunk of a tree?
For that matter, is it always easy to tell whether a man is merely unconscious or quite dead?However, Aliens with Forehead Ridges continue to thrive in Hollywood Scifi. In casual encounters with the material universe, we rarely feel any difficulty here, since we usually deal with things that are clearly alive, such as a dog or a rattlesnake; or with things that are clearly nonalive, such as a brick or a typewriter.This is for an obvious reason: the audience wants aliens of One of the first ways in which we learn to classify objects is into two groups: 1. Nevertheless, the task of defining "life" is both difficult and subtle; something that at once becomes evident if we stop to think. The caterpillar is alive, but the rock is not; as you guess at once, since the caterpillar is moving and the rock is not.(Or else Earth Humans are descended from them, though this raises troublesome questions about chimpanzees.)Perhaps because of these awkward issues, Aliens with Forehead Ridges have become much less common in written SF (save for media tie-ins) than they were some decades ago.In written SF, the KNOWN GALAXY seems increasingly to be inhabited only by Earth Humans.