2. It's more likely it's a religious dilemma more than a scientific one
I trust that a fair amount of denial of life o Mars 30 odd years ago has to o with one's belief.
People now a days are much more likely to accept life outside our planet than back then, i think.
That's why i think the initial data is still being debated. I think it's the person's personal beliefs that color the evidence more than anything.
Granted I also feel that NASA filters a metric fuk-ton of what they show the public.
I've just gotten used to mistrusting the government when it comes to mind-expanding discoveries about the universe and our own little piece of it.