It is with great optimism that I view the human future in space. There is nothing that excites me more than participating in a grand effort to colonize other worlds, and sharing this experience with other sentient beings. It is at heart an epic undertaking to spread life—with all its perils and miseries—to new and more distant horizons, to ever-greater heights, to ever-more hostile realms of the unknown. Within the human heart lies a longing to take risks, for the rewards of the cosmos do not come with guarantees.
We are a species that is never satisfied with the current state of affairs. We seek improvements, growth, development, and enlightenment. How can we assess the state of affairs in the valleys of Mars, or in the lunar plains, without human hearts beating in situ, without human hands sifting through the soil?
The promise of spaceflight is to provide us with hope. We were born into a hopeful world because others made it that way—through their own blood, sweat, and tears they made the world that way. They eradicated smallpox so that humans may live to choose their own futures; they built internal combustion engines so that we may be liberated from the limits of muscle power; and they built great rockets so that we may know other worlds. It is up to us to carve a future in which a new generation of dreamers will find inspiration, and will carry the torch of hope farther than we can imagine. Is this not the key to our own fulfillment in this life? Is it not our highest hope to sail amongst the planets as lords of the Solar System?