On this day when Iran has launched a rocket into space we have to ask ourselves if it is wise for the Obama Administration to cut funding to NASA and cripple our ability to put people and equipment into space. I’m old enough to remember how I felt when we first went to the moon and I was one of those people who skipped school holding my breath for 4 1/2 minutes to watch Apollo 13 made it back from an in-flight explosion on the way to the moon.
In the 60s the space race defined our national identity as explorers. TV shows like Start Trek inspired a new vision of the future. Yet now we have money to bail out banks, insurance companies, and auto makers. We have money to give tax breaks to the rich. We have money to fund war. But when it comes to our national identity as explorers, there is no money.
I want the Star Trek Future. I want America to explore strange new worlds; to seek out new life and new civilizations; to boldly go where no one has gone before. The idea that the Iranians are more interested in space than we are tells me that we have lost our national vision.