The full Moon of July 16, 2019
This is the heritage of a country that undertook an audacious program of exploration under the leadership of JFK, and which succeeded through the exploits of courageous men like Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins. What do our children dream of today? Is our education system inspiring them to strive for incredible things, or is it teaching them to be unquestioning automatons in a factory or office? Are we teaching them to be curious about the world, or teaching them how to take a multiple-choice assessment test?
I had the privilege today of offering a lecture on "Space Rocks" at the public library in Hemet, California. The audience turned to be mostly young women 6 to 9 years of age, so I changed gears and made it more of a talk about the adventures of scientific research, and how anyone, including them, could be the vanguard of our next journeys into the unknown.
In the words of the immortal folksinger Lee Hays (and no doubt others), all things, like a kidney stone, will pass. I believe that adventure still awaits us as a people. As I start a new school year next month, I am as excited as I have ever been to have the opportunity to introduce my students to an incredible Universe. And almost every teacher I know feels the same way.
version of a post from August 25, 2012 marking the passing of astronaut Neil Armstrong.