Voice from the Commonwealth
Commentary, World Views and Occasional Rants from a small 'l' libertarian in Massachussetts

"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and leave us in peace. We seek not your council nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." - Samuel Adams

Saturday, February 01, 2003

I don't think I have anything really meaningful to add to the very smart folks out there talking about the shuttle disaster today. Maybe just some reflections and thoughts. Born in 1971 I grew up with cool space toys and Star Wars and the beginning of the Space Shuttle Age. Sure I had the kid dreams of being an astronaut and going into space, but the earth and ground and our past always exerted a stronger tug (plus I hated math) and I went tocollege to study Archaeology and History.

I remember the day of the Challenger explosion vividly. I was a freshman at Bishop Waterson High School in Columbus, Ohio. I was listening to the launch on my little yellow Sony Sport Walkman. I was devastated and for the rest of the day in school it was all that we talked about.

I think the President did fine today. As he has since becoming President. I'm sure the hate-God (and by extension hate-Bush) crowd were upset at Bush continuing insistence on sharing his faith with us and his references to God today probably further inflamed their hatred. "Why does he have to bring God into the shuttle blowing up?" But, one of the things that has always struck me about astronauts is when you see interviews with them and their families and even ground crews you become intensely aware of how strong their faith is. These few who have seen more and gone further and pushed more boundaries than the rest of us combined saw something that reinforced their faith in God and I think that is pretty impressive.

My favorite Sci-Fi write is William Gibson. He already has something up about today. Well worth reading.

The Monogram Space Taxi was a particular favorite, and I kept the space-suited figures long after the taxi itself had broken up and vanished.

Broken up and vanished. In the sky over Nacogdoches County. And I’m sad all the way back to the little boy with his stiff black book and his Bonestell rockets.

But Willy was right, and nobody ever said it would be risk-free.

If it were, it wouldn’t be glorious.

And it’s only with these losses that we best know that it really is.

< email | 2/01/2003 05:01:00 PM | link

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