Monday, May 11, 2015

I Don’t Get It: Why is Everyone Interested in Going to Mars?

When I watched the first man walk on the moon, the first question that came to my mind was, “Why?”

The years have sped by, and I’m still asking why, but in reference to Mars now.

What’s there that’s so valuable? I still haven’t read about a good reason for going to the moon yet.

Moon rocks are cool, but hardly worth billions of dollars in getting them. Moon walking hasn’t resulted in anything benefiting mankind (unless you count Michael Jackson’s cool dance step – the moonwalk).

So now it’s off to Mars, and more glory? 

Enter the Dutch-based Mars One venture. The idea behind Mars One is to jump-start Red Planet settlement, and fund the endeavor with billions of dollars' worth of sponsorships and media deals.

A colony on Mars? SpaceX's billionaire founder, Elon Musk, is due to unveil his own long-term plan for Mars odysseys by the end of this year.

Last week's meeting of the NASA Advisory Council, space agency officials provided the outline of their "Evolvable Mars Campaign," a long-term effort to develop the technologies needed for human missions to Mars.

Colonies. Numerous missions. So what?

I don’t see any benefit to planet hopping and forming colonies on inhospitable planets. If we end up polluting the earth so badly it becomes inhabitable, we don’t deserve another opportunity – even a less than desirable one.

Some advisers are even talking about grabbing a rock from one of Mars' moons, Phobos or Deimos, and bringing it back for study. Let me ask you, what have we done with moon rocks thus far?

Collecting rocks from planets is not my idea of advancing the human race.

Instead of settling for planets that aren’t human friendly, perhaps more emphasis should be directed towards other universes and planets that might be compatible with human life.

I know. Silly me.

Even if we don’t find one, it’s still a better idea than collecting samples from uninhabitable planets that appear to offer little, or no, advantages to exploring them and especially living on them!

Time for me to walk on down the road…




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