Wednesday, July 15, 2009

We Choose to Go to the Moon . . .

Forty years ago, mankind achieved what had, up to that point, only been possible in the realm of science-fiction: we walked on the moon. On July 20th, 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped out of their LEM, the Eagle, and onto the lunar surface, and humanity was forever changed by the experience. After a very cynical and progressively pessimistic decade, people everywhere were filled with wonder and a new faith that anything truly was possible. Apollo 11, in spite of ridiculous odds and a deadline no one thought could be met, had fulfilled JFK's promise when he said, "We choose to go to the moon."

Once again, we live in a time where wars rage in almost every corner of the globe, children starve, pollution and climate change choke our cities, and people focus on every salacious foible and tabloid incident in the news. We are cynical and jaded, too angry, too exclusionary, too victimized.

And yet, we also live in a time where we are connected to other people by a thousand tiny threads, where news is instant, we can see our friends from across oceans with the push of a button, and can talk to anyone anywhere at anytime we wish. Technology expands our lives by leaps and bounds, and once again anything we choose is possible. We need to step back in wonder once more at our achievements, as people did 40 years ago, glued to their black-and-white television sets and awestruck that a human being was standing on the surface of another planet. We chose to go, and in a testament to what we are capable of even in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds, we succeeded. When we work together, we can do wondrous things. That was truly the giant leap mankind took that day, and to honor what we acheived with Apollo 11, we should remember that again.

Nothing is impossible, even peace in our time, or an end to hunger and disease, and freedom for those oppressed.

After all, we chose to go to the moon.
*Go to We Choose the for a real-time recreation of the Apollo 11 mission, including Mission Control/Spacecraft transmissions, progress tracking, restored video and audio of the landing, and more. Apollo 11 "launches" in just under 24 hours; be a part of those historical moments once again.

1 comment:

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