By Evan Plant-Weir, Senior Writer, Red Planet Bound
For the past few weeks, an article has been circulating throughout the Mars science and exploration community that serves as a sharp reminder of how much work remains to be done in educating the public (and apparently journalists) on the subject of the red planet.
‘Mars Is a Hellhole’ seemingly aims to characterize the objective of a long term human presence on Mars as folly. By couching scary-sounding Mars factoids within a blatantly ad hominem swipe at Elon Musk, it dismisses a profoundly consequential vision for humanity out of hand.
I believe that the author’s intentions are good, and that – like many of us – they share in a justifiable concern for the future of humanity and our fellow Earthlings. Further, history teaches that it is always wise to question the intentions of the most rich and influential amongst us.
Setting aside for a moment the bone this author has to pick with Musk, the conclusions reached therein regarding the plausibility of living on Mars are puzzlingly misplaced.
The first eyebrow-raising claim we encounter is that the only thing Mars and Earth have in common “is that both are rocky planets ...