Every so often, there will be an old episode of Star Trek (The Next Generation) on and I can’t help, but sit and watch. The show, in my opinion, was one of the better shows of its time and even to this day, lives on. There’s something about the show that isn’t really dated. Well, if you ignore the “graphics,” the show could just have easily run in the mid-2000’s (while it actually ran from the late-80’s through the early-90’s.
Let’s take a step back into history (but not so far back as to invoke a debate of evolution and creationism). Humans on the planet started somewhere. Let’s call this somewhere land F. From land F, these humans began to explore outward. They began to explore the lands of neighboring E and G. So, where there were humans in only land F, now there were humans in E, F, and G. This continued until humans had explored all the land that they could by foot. Then, being an infinitely curious species by nature, humans built vessels by which to explore the seas. Soon, humans had explored every piece of land and every inch of sea on the planet.
What was next? Well, obviously, the sky. Humans sent probes out into the sky. Once they figured out a way to get a human up into the sky, they did that, too. Humans have been exploring the limits of their existence for as long as there have been humans. Something I find a little strange — how come we haven’t “conquered” space, yet? Or do we think that we already have?
It would seem that we have grown, exponentially, in our ability to explore. With the whole walking across the land-thing, that took awhile. Then, the boats. Then, the planes. If you look at the dates for which these sorts of things have been discovered/invented, it would seem that we’d be due to figure out how to pilot a plane across the galaxy. And then I take a step back and read some of the headlines…
- India sees new reason to distrust Pakistan, New York Times, May 3rd, 2011
- Can India pull off a covert strike?, Hindustan Times, May 7th, 2011
- Bombings in Iraq kill dozens, The Vancouver Sun, May 5th, 2011
- Bombing of Gadhafi won’t let up, Clinton Warns, CNN, May 6th, 2011
- Bomber rams Iraq Police station, kills 20, The Boston Globe, May 6th, 2011
And then it makes sense.
Instead of using our abilities to create, instead of peacefully cooperating with each other, we, where we is us as a species, would rather get into various brouhahas. This is troubling. Open any newspaper and I challenge you to not find something about political unrest somewhere in the world. How the heck are we supposed to come together as a species, come together and represent the Earth, when we can’t get a long?
Some people believe (and some people don’t believe) that there are other species on other planets. Forget for a second which side of this debate you fall on and just consider that there are. Consider that there are a species of intelligent beings out there who can look in on what’s happening in our world and see what we’re doing. Given that they are able to see what we are doing, there’s a good chance that their technology is far superior to ours. Do you think… as they watch us fight with each other constantly… do you think that they would want to help us out? Meaning, do you think that that they would willingly give us superior technology to help us send our people out beyond the galaxy? The answer is no. No, they wouldn’t. Because if they did, they know that our planet, or at least the majority of our species, would disappear in about 3 days. Humans with superior technology is not safe. Humans need to learn compassion. Humans need to learn empathy. Humans need to learn that killing each other is not a sanctionable act.
I hope that in my lifetime, if there are intelligent beings on other planets, we get to meet them.