The space shuttle Columbia exploded this morning on its way in to land. Seven astronauts died. It's a horrific tragedy, and these brave men and women deserved a longer life.
But something else causes me to despair. I don't know if you guys remember when the Challenger exploded, but NASA basically ceased all manned space flights for a very long time. And when the spaceflights came back finally, after like 4 years, NASA seemed much more timid in its goals. Indeed, NASA has never really recovered its former glory. Budgets kept getting slashed, and public interest never picked up again. Only just in the past month was it announced the ill-fated "Teacher in Space" program was going to be re-instated. What are the chances that will still happen?
Maybe I've read too many science fiction books (I have) but I really feel that the exploration of space is vitally important to mankind. And this may very well kill it for the foreseable future.
But that's all speculation. For now I'm just pissed and saddened that 7 of the people who pave our future are dead.