Would you volunteer to go to Mars? | The Tylt

Would you volunteer to go to Mars?

The idea of leaving Earth behind forever has never been more tempting. Between climate change, partisan politics and just about everything going wrong in the world, people are wishing they could start from scratch—because can things get any worse? Others think Earth is a fine place to live. It actually has an atmosphere and while people can be shitty, not everything is horrible. What do you think? 🚀

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Would you volunteer to go to Mars?
#GetMeOffThisPlanet
A festive crown for the winner
#RatherStayOnEarth
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Would you volunteer to go to Mars?
#GetMeOffThisPlanet
#RatherStayOnEarth
#GetMeOffThisPlanet

With the way things are going on Earth, leaving this place for a barren, lifeless rock in the middle of space has never seemed more appealing.

Of course, there are other reasons to go to Mars. Elon Musk is pushing for colonization to prevent humans from going extinct. The logic is pretty simple: in order to protect against an extinction-level event like the one that killed the dinosaurs, humans need to create a back up population on another planet. Writer Tim Urban says it's like a hard drive:

Now—if you owned a hard drive with an extraordinarily important Excel doc on it, and you knew that the hard drive pretty reliably tended to crash every month or two, with the last crash happening five weeks ago—what’s the very obvious thing you’d do? You’d copy the document onto a second hard drive.

On another level, colonizing Mars could inspire an entire generation of humans to strive for more. Colonizing another planet is the ultimate adventure. It's like sailing off to the New World but on steroids. 

"I think it would be the most inspiring thing that I can possibly imagine," he said. "Life needs to be more than just solving problems every day. You need to wake up and be excited about the future, and be inspired, and want to live."
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Others would much rather stay on Earth. Things can be bad here at times, but at least Earth has an atmosphere. It's inevitable that people will die in the process of going to Mars. A lot of people would much rather stay alive and deal with the usual craziness on Earth. 

Besides, all the effort and resources necessary to send someone to Mars would be better spent making Earth a better place to live. Climate change is a growing threat that has very real solutions. The time and money spent on Mars could be better spent weaning Earth off of fossil fuels and fixing global inequality. There are plenty of things to fix on Earth, so why waste our time with Mars?

Instead of creating a backup earth, many think we should make Earth a better place to live for all humans. Earth is a unique place—we haven't found any other planets that have the necessary conditions to support life as we know it. Doesn't it make more sense to preserve and fix what we have instead of attempting to recreate Earth elsewhere? In a TED talk, astronomer Lucianne Walkowicz said:

I worry — I worry that this excitement about colonizing Mars and other planets carries with it a long, dark shadow: the implication and belief by some that Mars will be there to save us from the self-inflicted destruction of the only truly habitable planet we know of, the Earth. As much as I love interplanetary exploration, I deeply disagree with this idea. There are many excellent reasons to go to Mars, but for anyone to tell you that Mars will be there to back up humanity is like the captain of the Titanic telling you that the real party is happening later on the lifeboats. 
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FINAL RESULTS
Culture
Would you volunteer to go to Mars?
#GetMeOffThisPlanet
A festive crown for the winner
#RatherStayOnEarth