Making Mars a Reality
written by Daniel Hay on January 22, 2004 | forum profile | contact me
number of views: 75108 | printable version (text) (PDF)
Somebody has to make the decision. Iíve made the decision to do it. Letís do it. Letís do it now.
Now what kind of opening statement is that? Where do you think it is leading and how can anybody spout off in that manner and expect to be listened to or read in any greater detail. Surprisingly I canít answer that, but I know that some folks will read or listen and will join. I know this because humankind has always had far-reachers who just had to go see over the mountain ridge, just had to cross the river, climb the glacier, sail the seas, visit other lands or travel to unknown areas in hopes of finding something.
Some did it for challenge. Others went beyond all limits for knowledge. Many did it for power or riches, and millions have done it for themselves and family. There were failures and there were successes and it has driven humankind to create the world as it is now. Itís not perfect and may never be but it evolves. We lovingly refer to it as Mother Earth. And yet, a mother is not complete with out a child. So lets give Mother Earth her first child.
Letís do it now. Letís not stop humankind from reaching beyond the obtainable. Iím ready to try and know of hundreds, or thousands, probably many thousands, who would also give it a chance. Letís do it. It is time for Mars.
Since about my 12th birthday I have wanted to go to Mars. Not to go and return. To go to Mars to live or die. At that time I figured the oceans would have been explored and humans would be living below the seas in the next decade. Yet, the sea was not what I wanted to do. I can remember the excitement of the Moon having watched all the space projects, both failures and successes. You can begin a pro/con list for Mars and be utterly overwhelmed with reasons to go before you could ever fill a page of reasons not to go.
Somebody has to make the decision. I am making it and expect enough others to be interested that this desire will no longer consume our thoughts but will become a drive and an attempt. Win or lose, we can try. I expect to begin now and be landing on Mars at our next closest orbital pass. Do you realize that means in less than two years? Will you help it get done? I will. With your help, and many others, both volunteer and professional, it can be done.
Why Red Colony?
There are so many sources of information and so many driving forces for colonization of Mars that it can become confusing and frustrating to the mildly interested viewer. Some of the sources are one-person spoutings, or veiled capitalistic attempts to bilk innocents from their money. There are many very good sites of information and with varied goals that sometimes seem to overlap and sometimes are conflicting. In the USA we would expect NASA to be our prime source of information with a firm goal of being on Mars. It is an excellent source and their research and expertise pays off.
Yet no single source seemed to provide as much hope and seriousness with fact and hypothetical grasping at the same time and still seem like it was a valid site. It is and has proven itself from its founding.
Red Colony first caught me with its mission statement. Then in the opening paragraph of its Home page is the comment "While other organizations care only to get to Mars, Red Colony strives to live there." Red Colony wants us to live there! Do you see the difference? They want to see us do it for all the reasons humankind has ever wanted to reach out. The viewers, and submitters, all know it can be done but nobody has done it and they are contributing their ideas and their intellect and their very hearts and souls.
And I say, "They are right and we can do it now. They donít have all the answers and we donít have the answers yet, but the answers are there to be found. Thank you, Red Colony."
Where are Martians?
Martians are not on Mars. Perhaps in some form there were Martians at some point in time. In some life form they may have existed, and perhaps life still does. But real Martians are those who go to make Mars a reality. They are the members of humankind who take the chance and get the opportunity to go to Mars.
Martians are Terrans who insist on crossing the next void. Individuals who willingly go where no earthling has gone before. Dreamers, thinkers, the people who will go and risk heartbreak and sorrow, injury, illness and death to prove that Martians have always been aroundÖ they have been struggling to fill earth and now are ready to fill Mars.
Life Beyond EarthÖ
Life is such a difficult concept to describe. Humans are spoiled and believe they are the epitome of life. They believe life just has to be similar to human life or to the other varied life forms found on earth. And in fact they may be correct, but humans have no basis for such a belief and at present have little chance of proving one way or the other the existence of life beyond Earth.
Was there ever life on Mars? Is there any form of life on Mars? Would we recognize life in any other form then what Earth has been allowed to develop?
Whether there is or is not life beyond Earth, especially in Mars, is a moot point. It does not matter. Humankind is not ready to fulfill the prime directive of not interfering with intelligent life nor the task of seeking out new life. It is probable that somewhere there is life in forms we would recognize, and it is even more likely that there is life in forms we would not understand.
It is not yet time in our evolutionary progress to worry about whether there is or is not life beyond earth. Our concern can be encapsulated in a tiny shell with an attached tag that says, "Live with what you find." Our prime goal in knowing of other potential life forms is to learn from it, to benefit from it, and to not create a need to harm it. Within that context we can hope to find life on Mars.
Terrans to Mars
Earth has some very inhospitable places and life has managed to grow in and around much of those areas. Life has invaded some of the most difficult habitats and humankind has gone right along with it. Terrans have lived in the worst conditions they could imagine and yet continue to progress into even more difficult habitats. We have an innate desire to prove we can do more then we did before. The driest, wettest, hottest and coldest we have encroached upon. With difficulty we can handle Mars.
Take away the need to make a personal living to pay bills, to feed family and to succeed against commercial pressure and you have Terrans able to live in the remotest parts of earth, to live on earthís moon, and to live and develop on Mars.
It is not a matter of "can" we do it. It is simply a matter of "will" we do it.
The cost to be considered is from the Earth-side because that is how society developed. Everything has a cost. There have been estimates of a Mars project in ranges of 50-500 billion dollars. In actuality it can be done for far less once specific goals are set, and milestones are reached. If handled properly, it can be done for so much less that some individuals or companies could fund a Mars colonization effort by themselves. Combine enough financial sources and success can be achieved.
It is no longer a process that requires developing the means to live on Mars. The means are there. It is more a matter of making a decision and saying, "This is how we are going to make it work. Now discover how to make it better. Explain how to make it easier. Show us how to make it safer." And then we say, "Show us how we are going to do it immediately instead of 20, 30, 50 years."
Terrans can live on Mars if they have the desire to do so. They can fulfill that desire if they can find the funds to make the required needs feasible.
Many ideas have been put forth for the means of getting to Mars, of living on Mars, of making Mars a profitable endeavor. There will be many social tenets to be reviewed, reconsidered, and perhaps revised to fit Martian needs. It is not earth and will not allow development of life as on earth.
In general the controversial points will solve themselves once one single point is clarified. No feasible trip to Mars makes any sense if it includes making a return to Earth. All Martians leaving Earth will have committed themselves to a one-way trip. Supplies can be delivered and even more Martians can arrive. Product can be returned, exchanges can be made, but it is not feasible to base colonization on the premise of cycling back to earth, or returning after a short visit. There is no round-trip tourist class.
Current technology does not make it possible to give consideration to any project that requires making a return to Earth a necessity. In 20, 30, or 50 years, perhaps technology will have shortened the time and eased the requirements so that return trips can be assured. That is in the future. Presently, we have to be willing to commit to the project knowing that if we go we do not return.
This view causes many people distress and today nearly all project considerations have had to include the return of earthlings to earth. We have to realize that if we go we are not returning. If we have children on Mars they are not visiting Earth. Their children wonít visit earth. Once a Martian always a Martian. It is highly probable that no Martian will ever do more then see Earth from space. Time and technology will make it feasible for short visits from earth to Mars in the reasonable near future.
If we accept this then we are able to immediately prepare a trip to Mars because we have the technology. We can build a new future. We can become a child of Mother Earth.
The Next Step
One great step for Terrans becomes the first step for Martians.
There is always one more step to take. All first steps for projects require funding. Today the intellect to go to Mars is brewing. The technology is available. Funds can be found in time. It takes money to make more money and it takes money to find more money.
There are people who can provide the funds needed to begin the greatest trip, the largest step of all humankind. What we need now is that seed, that first person. The individual willing to say, "I have the money. Letís do it." Make that money available and Martians can show you how to make the rest appear and how to leap from earth to Mars.
Where is that first person? Where are the thousands of others ready to join? Where are the companies willing to help? Where are the few who can help us all succeed? I know that there is at least one willing to make that historical step. Where are you?
Be the first face on Mt. Mars. Be the leading name of those who said, "Letís Do It." Be the name in future history that says, "They took one small step and launched a planet. They made Mars happen."