The Escapism of Space

I mean. I don’t even have to try to make fun of it.

The Bootleg Fire is generating is own weather. Animals across the world are dying. Rising waters, combined with a “wobbling” moon will cause extensive flooding in 2030. Europe is experiencing record rains and flooding. The Pandemic is still here. And our billionaires are shooting themselves into space.

Jeff Bezos, Richard Branson, Elon Musk, they are all selling you the allure of space. Tired of this planet? The pandemic got you down? Live in a flood/fire zone and in danger of losing your house? Don’t worry folks! For just the low low price of a couple hundred thousand dollars, you can get away from it all.

And look. It’s hard not to get caught up in the drama. Jeff Bezos, the villain of Amazon, recently divorced from his (seemingly better) wife, got himself the Ferrari of all Ferrari’s and shot himself into space in a penis shaped rocket.

I mean, my God, if that’s not just a rich midlife crisis, I don’t know what is.

In reality, what all three of these billionaires are doing is mass marketing for what may (eventually) be commercialized space flight. Their companies will become luxury space travel suppliers, like PanAm on steroids. Beautiful Space waitresses will bring you and your partner space themed cocktails while you orbit the Earth, laughing at all the people below who can’t afford to “really” travel.

There’s been a lot of praise, and backlash, from these space flights. But honestly, I don’t really care about them. I think these white, wealthy men are looking to commodify something most people can’t reach, in a time where people won’t trust science enough to get a life saving vaccine, let alone believe in climate change.

OK, so what?

Far from inspiring, it’s concerning. It’s almost like an acknowledgement that our Earth is dying, and we have to get out now while the getting is good. Like every good apocalypse story, some people will have a way out. People like Bezos, and Branson, and Musk. Most of us though, we won’t. We’ll have to figure out how to live on an ever changing globe while the wealthy in our society flee.

Even if no one actually creates a Mars colony for the wealthy elite, the wealthy are still better set up to weather climate change, and billion dollar corporations (like Amazon) are contributing to it. So maybe we should focus on the problems we’re facing now, and find solutions, before launching ourselves into space for 8 minutes.

By mshipstory


I'm Lindsay Adams. I'm passionate about history, teaching, and writing.

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