Ending of Space Shuttle Program Proof of America’s Decline
I cannot think of a better ending to the Space Shuttle Program. Oh, wait, yes I can.
It would be that it never ended.
Today was the last launch of the last of the Space Shuttles. The wires, hot plates, engines, metal and brawn that went into the creation of this angelic behemoths is something of legendary status. Atlantis had the honor of streaking through the sky, hurling itself into orbit as exclamation point on a program that has done so much for American society.
Yet, this is the end of the program. It did have to end at some point, well at least this iteration of it had to end. The shuttles were beginning to show age, and the instruments and technology was getting a little behind the curve. I mean, the technology used is far advanced from anything we use in the consumer world of technology, but shouldn’t the shuttles be using holographic control systems or start looking like a Star Destroyer?
In the 1930s to let’s say the 1980s, we had a kick in the science. Why? Because we were competing with those dickhead Nazis and those crazy Russians throughout all those years. We had innovate and invent ways to be better than them. Early on, the inventions were used for war, then as the Cold War progressed, science and technology was invented in case we went to war.
But the NASA and other Space Program endeavors within the United States were created to defeat those pesky Russians in another area. The scientific advancement of our society.
Then something changed. We no longer had to defeat anybody in anything. America was No. 1 and everyone else sucked. Everyone had to learn English and we had to make up wars just so we could show off our new technology that kills people.
The thing that saddens me the most, is that with the proposed cuts the GOP has presented, Space Exploration could be a thing of the past. It could be a story I tell my children about one day. About how man flew into the heavens and continued to explore the unknown. About how our feeble little minds and tiny little bodies created machines and vehicles that allowed to travel and exist thousands and thousands and thousands of miles into the sky.
It could be the stuff of legends for my children.
Our ingenuity is what set us apart as a Nation. Many people will say it is our work hard mentality, or it is our roughness. Some will say it is our military mindset and world political prowess. But I believe is has more to do with our minds and willingness to stare at the void of space and say, “How do we get there?”
We no longer care about progress. We no longer care about ingenuity. We no longer care about extending a program that brought more understanding of our universe, of ourselves.
We care about the bottom line. We care about taxes. We care about being the ones who are right, as opposed to doing the right thing.
We have become too complacent. Our complacency is what shows our decline as a world leader more than anything else.
I can’t think of a better observation than our willingness to just say, “Yeah, we don’t need to go to Space anymore. I mean, Earth is all we need to know.”