Friday, July 13, 2012
I ran across this quote from Apollo 14 astronaut Edgar Mitchell, and I enjoy it for its poignancy and bluntness:
You develop an instant global consciousness, a people orientation, an intense dissatisfaction with the state of the world, and a compulsion to do something about it. From out there on the moon, international politics looks so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, 'Look at that, you son of a bitch.'
Sure, astronaut Edgar does indeed endorse UFO myths, but that shouldn't detract from the general direction of his quote. Perhaps someday, as space travel becomes easier and more common, more people will get a chance to see Earth from space. Every astronaut ever quoted seems to have the same theme to their quote, just like every astrophysicist who studies this stuff: when you look at us from the perspective of "up there" instead of "down here," all this petty crap dissolves; politics, race, territory all seem insignificant.