The Moon and the Future of Humanity

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin on the moon (Photo by Neil Armstrong).

“That’s one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind.” — Neil Armstrong, 20 July 1969

Today marks the 50th anniversary of something completely unprecedented in human history–a human being landing, and the next day setting foot, on another world.  Neil A. Armstrong and Edwin E. Aldrin Jr. walked on the lunar surface, while Michael Collins became the second person to orbit the moon alone.

But why should we care?

The desktops, laptops, tablets, and cell phones we use are partially based on developments made during the space program. Discoveries and technology have had a major affect on the development of a great number of fields including communication, transportation, and medicine. A number of people, maybe someone you know, maybe you, are alive because of that.  It even led to the development of seemingly unrelated inventions including the sports bra.

But there’s an aspect of the moon landing that’s often ignored, and that’s the fundamental human drive to explore. Whether we take the biblical Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden story literally or not, it portrays the first two human beings leaving their home and exploring elsewhere. Throughout history, exploration and development have gone hand in hand.

Medieval China sent ships far away and had a thriving culture; when the exploration stopped, the culture started to stagnate. We live in a time where virtually the entire Earth (with the partial exception of the ocean), has been explored. There’s one, final frontier left: space.

EDIT: The names of Aldrin and Collins had been mistakenly switched.  It is now corrected.

For author/astronomer David Lee Summer’s take on this, see here.

An opinion of an individual member of The Loveshade Family does not necessarily reflect the views of the whole family.

About Alden Loveshade

Alden is a philosopher, personist, writer, playwright, screenwriter, director, actor, poet, photographer, dumbek drummer, roleplayer, and educator. Worked for others and freelance as a journalist, investigator, columnist, reviewer, teacher, animal caregiver, photographer, and dishwasher. Claims e doesn’t care about money, but always needs more. Recognized by Phi Theta Kappa, Golden Key International Honor Society, the U. S. Jaycees, and groups of like ilk. They don’t necessarily like em, but they recognize em. Graduated summa cum laude from some university that apparently figured the best way to get rid of em was to graduate em. Alden has worked with Emmy, Oscar, Tony, and Pulitzer Prize Nominees and Winners but they never shared their awards! Alden has dual citizenship in the Principality of Sealand and the United States of America. His official title for Sealand is Lord Alden Loveshade. E thinks that makes em sound impressive.
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15 Responses to The Moon and the Future of Humanity

  1. Pet Girl says:

    If it meant inventing the sports bra it was all worth it! 😛

  2. Miley Spears says:

    I don’t really think about how much it changed things. But really I guess it did.

  3. Lorien Loveshade says:

    I guess I also do not think about all that changed because of it. It happened long before I was born but I know it has changed things. I guess we would not have this blog and the Internet if we did not go to the moon!

  4. TawTew the Naturally Perfumed says:

    I didn’t know all those things came from it. But the greatest exploration is in the soul and the mind.

  5. Bill Cox says:

    You left out weather prediction. With satellites and computers we can predict the weather days ahead better than they could 12 hours ahead.

  6. Mindy Yuko says:

    So many things happened in the 1960s. It’s like everything was totally being recreated. Not like now when it’s all done for money!

    Can you miss the good old days even if you weren’t born then?

  7. Great post and thanks for the shout out! You make a lot of great points. We definitely gained a lot from the Apollo program. Developments continued coming during the shuttle program. Other examples of things we gained from the space program include microwave ovens, household smoke detectors, and scratch-resistant plastic lenses. One minor correction. Edwin J. Aldrin was the one who walked on the moon with Neil Armstrong. It was Michael Collins who orbited alone, waiting for them.

    • Thanks for pointing out my goof–fixed it! I know better, but apparently when I was editing and moving stuff around, I got the names switched. Had I written it as “Buzz” instead of “Edwin” I probably would have caught it–I tend to forget his first name is actually Edwin.

      Weird thing is I was just telling somebody today about how I wondered how Collins felt getting so close to the moon but never actually walking there.

      Thanks also for your other examples of space-inspired technology!

  8. Tom T. Trucker says:

    I don’t think we had to go to space to do all that. We could have used the money to build things here on Earth instead of traveling all the way there to pick up rocks.

  9. K'taden X. Peas says:

    The landings did not happen and NASA employees lied. There are so many gaps and inconsistencies in the historical record of the missions. The whole crewed landing program was a hoax from start to end. My outdated smart phone is smarter than 1969 computers. The technology to send men to the Moon was lacking and the Van Allen radiation belts, solar flares, solar wind, coronal mass ejections and cosmic rays made such a trip impossible.

    The conspiracy involved more than 400,000 people who worked on the Apollo project for nearly ten years, the 12 men who walked on the Moon, the six others who flew with them as Command Module pilots, and another six astronauts who orbited the Moon. That should be obvious.

    The real moon landing was in 1953 by a group of rocket engineers hand-picked by J.R. “Bob” Dobbs. They found Yeti already there.

  10. XRumerTest says:

    Hello. And Bye.

  11. Pope Hilde says:

    Do not forget that Russia, really the Soviet Union, virtually invented the space program.

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