by Jason Burch
The Kepler Telescope developed by NASA is one of the most adept instruments that man has ever created to look through our solar system in an attempt to uncover habitable planets or even life on another planet.
Scientists have determined that there are Earth-like planets within the realm of our solar system.
According to NewScientist.com, the amount of Earth-like planets is the closest projection they could make because they are still analyzing what is orbiting in space.
Unfortunately, even with the highly efficient $600 million device, we are still unclear as to whether or not there is indeed life on any of these other planets.
It is narrow sighted to think that we are alone in this vast Universe.
With NASA’s latest reports, it is not a question whether we find life, but how to handle it if found. It is critical that we continue to advance science and technology here in the United States.
To impede our scientific progress at this point would be a terrible mistake. I do not buy the argument that NASA is a budgetary burden, considering we spend more per year on our defense budget than we have spent over the past two decades on our exploration program.
Life on other planets is a fascinating yet terrifying concept for many to contemplate.
Some think that we are just not ready for such a concept.
Ready or not, I believe that we will find life beyond Earth and when we do, it will forever change our existence.
All of the reasons to abandon our search, are based upon fear.
Fear of repeating the same mistakes we have made in the past, of what we might find, and of what it might force us to do or consider.
One of the most critical points that will be brought to light has to do with faith.
Finding life on another planet could force people to rethink their faith. Forcing people to rethink or re-evaluate their faith has never been an easy task. History has taught us this.
The advancement of science has been met with extreme opposition in the past.
Galileo, one of the earliest astronomers, was met with stern and fierce opposition by the Catholic Church.
I like to think we have evolved and learned from that fearful and ignorant logic that was used 4,000 years ago.
It is 2014 and luckily today, we have moved past this type of misguided decision making.
We understand that science like astronomy is nothing to be feared, but something to be studied.
We should not just sit by idle and leave the Universe to the imagination.
If there is something else out there in space, it would behoove us to know what we are dealing with, whether it is a threat, resources, or even a habitable planet with similar organisms to what we experience here on Earth.
There is absolutely no way turning a blind eye to our solar system is the appropriate action to take now.
Let us leave our prejudice, our fear, and all other horrible social practices in the past where they belong.
Support for the advancement of science is tantamount to the growth of our nation and our society.