Go Support the Mars Generation!

For the past sev­er­al months, I’ve been a fan of Abi­gail Har­ri­son — Astro­naut Abby — an aspir­ing astro­naut who spends a lot of her time inspir­ing oth­er young peo­ple, includ­ing chil­dren, to appre­ci­ate and be involved in STEM edu­ca­tion and activities.

Two things stuck out to me about this astronaut-in-training:

  1. I’ve no doubt that she must be ridicu­lous­ly busy — school, space explo­ration advo­ca­cy, fundrais­ing, etc. — but she seems to respond to every­thing! For some­one shoot­ing for the stars, she sure is down to Earth!
  2. She hopes to be the first astro­naut on Mars! This is awe­some on numer­ous lev­els. There has, in my life­time, been no pos­i­tive event that rivaled that of decades before my birth: the moon land­ing. To bear wit­ness in my life­time to a human set­ting foot on Mars — espe­cial­ly one whom I’ve had brief con­ver­sa­tions with? WOW! More won­der­ful­ly, and more long term, my daugh­ter will get to watch Abby’s project grow, and in her teens or twen­ties, she will (I hope!) get to wit­ness Abby’s Mars land­ing as live as it pos­si­bly can be!

We need some­thing to hope for, some­thing to inspire us in the same way that the space pro­gram inspired us back in the fifties and six­ties. We need to see our­selves not as sep­a­rate peo­ples divid­ed by invis­i­ble bor­der lines but as a glob­al human species. 

The dream to put humans on Mars is a glob­al dream. A unit­ing dream. A reminder that we should not be divid­ed in wars and hate.

We are one peo­ple. One world. I hope for a suc­cess­ful human mis­sion to Mars just as I hope for a grow­ing sec­u­lar now. We need it, more so every day.

To that end (well, the suc­cess­ful mis­sion to Mars part of it), Abby has launched a new non-prof­it orga­ni­za­tion called The Mars Gen­er­a­tion which aims to enable the future of space explo­ration by inspir­ing and excit­ing but also by pro­vid­ing fund­ing for youth which meet cer­tain qual­i­fi­ca­tions to attend U.S. Space Camp!

I encour­age you to go like The Mars Gen­er­a­tion on Face­book and to be a part of inspir­ing the youth of the world to shoot for the stars.

These are excit­ing times to be alive, and peo­ple like Abby and Alyssa Car­son and many oth­ers are there to remind us that there is so much out there, not only on our own world but on worlds beyond.

Fea­tured image: source

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Rick Beckman