Essay on NASA Budget Cuts

842 Words4 Pages
In July of 1958, President Eisenhower passed the National Aeronautics and Space Act, which established the National Aeronautics and Space Administration as a response to the Soviet Union's launch of Sputnik nine months earlier. That administration, now known worldwide as NASA, has become an icon of space exploration and mankind's accomplishments. Who would have thought that fifty years later, NASA's future would be so uncertain? Congress has recently proposed a bill that would significantly cut funding from the NASA's Constellation program. These budget cuts are unnecessary and are counterproductive to the original idea of the space program.
Congress authorized the Constellation program in 2005, assigning it multiple goals, such as
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After the Americans had won the space race of the 60's, space exploration plummeted on the nation's agenda. To this day, the world's leaderships generally believe that humanity should be focused on domestic affairs, instead of gazing of into the stars. In contrast, advocates of the Constellation program believe the opposite: that NASA should return to the Moon, and eventually to Mars.
One could argue that NASA is a waste of time, and that Congress's plans a good thing, but there are many benefits to continuing the Constellation program. Although NASA will still continue operation without it, the Constellation program, if continued, would result in major technological advances that would eventually trickle down to the commercial level and benefit humanity as a whole. So far, these "NASA spinoffs" include water purification methods, weather forecasting aids, personal alarm systems, radiation hazard detectors, along with countless others ("Spinoff"). NASA's programs also employ hundreds of engineers to design and test these technologies. Furthermore, NASA's explorations dramatically increase our overall knowledge base, allowing us to make sense of our surroundings. It is human nature to question and explore our environment. Furthermore, another one of Constellation's goals was to establish a permanent human presence on the Moon, and someday on Mars.
Despite NASA's immediate loses, the new
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