Truthers, Birthers, Lizard Man enthusiasts and all their ilk drive me nuts. I am a big believer in Occam’s razor so when people take the long way around the barn to get to an idea I am skeptical. Most of these folks present their beliefs without any proof and more than a few of them actually expect you to believe that the lack of proof is itself proof. So I am not a fan of conspiracy theorists at all. That said, I do believe there is a world of difference from simply suspecting something and holding it as absolute truth, so if you have a notion, and only present it as such, then I am OK, I have a few myself.
One of those notions, one I am going to share here, has to do with our exploration of space, or more accurately, or lack thereof the last thirty years. I understand that Challenger made us gun-shy for a bit, but all this time later, we should have been building semi-permanent structures like labs on the moon. We should be exploring the possibility of more of us setting out into the final frontier.
The benefits cannot be understated. Learning how to create living environments on alien worlds will help alleviate our overpopulation. Learning how to mine asteroids will make mining and destroying the Earth a thing of the past. We can explore new energy technologies, new medicines, and even the nature of life on Earth in labs built hundreds of thousands of miles across a vacuum from any other living being. Not to mention, we are talking about living in space. How cool is that?
I suspect, however, that there are those who are emotionally invested in it not happening. They do not want us to look out across the vastness of space and see anything but a tiny cage where they rule. They do not want us to know our potential when we come together because they need us to be separate. They do not want us to look back on this beautiful, blue-green orb we call home and recognize our common humanity. They gain too much from keeping us at each others throats. They would rather rule in hell, a hell they create, than server in the heavens along the rest of us.
I have no proof, of course. I do not know what is going on in the minds of those that influence policy. That is why it is merely a notion, and frankly I hope I am wrong. I would hate to think that anyone could look at that potential for all humanity and merely see their very tiny sacrifice of status. There may be more practical reasons for this neglect of space exploration, but regardless of the reasons I hope we get over it.
Because there is a magnificent, gigantic universe out there to explore and metaphorically speaking we have not even left our bed. I think it is time to wake up, look lovingly at one another and then up at the sky and dream. Look up and dream of a place for us all. Dream of a world where we explore and learn for their own sake, and not for what it gains us in material wealth.