At one time humans were trapped upon their planet. They didn't have any way to travel beyond their atmosphere, and the world they inhabited was glorious, but an intergalactic prison, of sorts. The people of earth could not even reach out to their moon, who hovered in orbit, watching over them, since the beginning of memory.
Jules Verne imagined our adventurous outreach. And some others did too, but few did so with a scientific outlook, most looked upon it as an adventure. Surely it was that too. But what makes our world interesting, is always the struggle between pragmatism and romanticism. We love heroes, but we need precision and science.
|Photo copyright NASA|
Some people view space exploration as a waste while their are humans living in poverty. That isn't a false concept, but, Christ said, there will always be the poor, so, you must make the decisions for the greater good knowing that our whole of society will move forward. I believe that the feeding and sharing with the poor can be done, along with any massive effort towards space. But, this isn't about my hippie views.
I will say, however, that the race to the moon, as well as outer space, came about due to the Cold War, and the desire to achieve an edge in the battle of wits and superior weaponry over the Soviet Union. When the Soviet Union launched the satellite Sputnik into orbit, the need to be on the moon was paramount.
Our move past the moon into further space seems distant, but Mars is necessary to reach before we expand. Will humanity make to space before it destroys itself with war, or destroys the planet with pollution and global warming? I don't know.
Comics have not fully embraced the amazing story of space, at least recently, but if you look you can find some. Some are even good. We are an amazing, frustrating, devilish, glorious, wonderful, fucked up species. Space exploration allows us to take a look at some of our finer moments.