Some people believe we shouldn’t be going to space at all, but it is important we do. Not just for exploration, but our very survival as a species.
Reasons some give to not go into space range from: “We should resolve our problems here” to “we shouldn’t destroy another world, to money” (I will address the last one later.)
People think should wait until we resolve all our problems here, but if we do we will never go anywhere and likely die out as species sooner. Some of the problems that need to be solved like war, racial strife and religious issues have been going on for thousands of years and will not be resolved any time soon.
There are some who say we should fix the damage we have done to Earth before going to any other world. Again, this will take time, time we may not have. We can go to space and fix the Earth’s ecosystem at the same time. What we learn from trying to live on an alien world could help us find new ways to help Earth.
The benefits of going to space are many. Mainly new technologies and the most important spreading humanity beyond one planet.
Exploration helps us learn more about the Solar System and the Universe beyond. Going to space has helped us develop new technologies. Some of these include temper foam mattresses, artificial limbs, anti-icing protection for aircraft, and firefighter gear. We could also develop technologies to better detect and prevent asteroid and comet strikes. Both of which have been responsible to several mass extinctions in the past.
There are some who want exploration, but limit it to probes. Probes are fine for exploring the deep reaches of space for now, until we get better propulsion systems, but we should be sending people into to space. There they can learn to live and work on the Moon, Mars, space stations and some day extra-solar worlds. We should be spreading humanity beyond Earth, in case it’s ever lost due to asteroids and comets strikes, massive volcanic eruption or nuclear war.
Due to some setbacks SpaceX has had, some say we should leave it to NASA. While NASA has done a great many things, it is beholden to the government, which means it has to deal with politics and the will of the taxpayer. Space exploration is very expensive and many in the government aren’t willing to fund it. Private companies like SpaceX, Blue Origin and Virgin can spur a new space race. Companies will compete to go space and mine asteroids. This competition will create new technologies that will benefit us in space and here on Earth.
We can’t be short sighted and wait to go to space. The time is now or we risk the extinction of our remarkable (albeit flawed) species. It could also bring us closer as we learn to live and work together in space.
For more technologies created by NASA https://spinoff.nasa.gov/