Friday, January 28, 2011
25th Anniversary of Challenger Disaster
Twenty-five years ago, President Reagan consoled a shocked nation with an elegant speech that reiterated support for the space program in spite of the dangers. "The future doesn't belong to the fainthearted; it belongs to the brave" he said.
Those words still ring true. We live in an America paralyzed by litigation, lack of leadership and political correctness. We are risk-averse to the point of inaction. We generate endless studies from endless commissions which present endless recommendations that go nowhere. Many, perhaps most, of our problems have solutions we've known for years, but our leaders were too fainthearted to implement them. Instead, they were left to fester and grow until they existentially threaten our republic.
It's ironic that 25 years after the Challenger explosion, the final flights of the US manned space program are taking place. Later this year, the shuttles will be grounded forever, with no replacement in sight. China, on the other hand, has stated plans for three space stations, and to be on the Moon by 2022 on the outside.
The future belongs to the brave.