We need to stop glamorizing space


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Ty Mcphee, Columnist

Space and its portrayal in the media is something that I’ve looked up to for the longest time. Fantasy, horror, romance and even comedy movies have been on my back burner with science fiction shining above all else. Being able to imagine the world in the distant future and visiting alien worlds full of beautiful flora and fauna and unique landscapes shaped by time is my dream.

In more recent years, space exploration and space travel have been talked about more and more. There are plans for a Mars mission; SpaceX has had numerous launches with its remote controlled ships and even Jeff Bezos has joined in on the renewed space race. 

However, we can’t forget where we are and where we’re living until that point: Earth. The planet that every single human being has been born on is what we as a collective need to focus our efforts on saving and keeping safe, not only for ourselves but for future generations so they eventually can see space.

The Pacific Institute published an article talking about the drought that the western states faced during 2021 and the problems that arose because of it. Fish and wildlife are being harmed due to overuse and contamination, wildfire season is starting earlier and lasting longer, farmers need to look to alternatives when it comes to watering their crops and the types of crops they’re planting, families in certain communities need to watch how much water they’re consuming.

Homelessness is another issue that some of these people investing in space could focus on combatting. The National Alliance to End Homelessness reported that in 2020, there are over 580,000 people experiencing homelessness. In Washington alone, that number is around 23,000.

Niell Blomkamp’s 2013 film “Elysium” is one of the examples of a future I’m not looking forward to. The ultra-rich live somewhere other than Earth due to the way Earth has been abused and show a complete disconnect between them and the everyday person and a complete lack of understanding while hoarding valuable assets and resources that could lead to better overall living for everyone. 

So the next time you look up at the stars, the moon or some far off planet, please think about the rock you’re standing on. It needs help staying safe and flourishing instead of drying up and dying along with everyone living on it.