Shuttle Diplomacy

I watched the latest shuttle launch on TV on the 4th of July, as earthlings continue their venture into the world beyond.  It also reminded me of the tragic plight of the Challenger shuttle crew 20-years ago, when Hawaii native son Ellison Onizuka and six others perished in space.  From that horrific moment and ever after, I have never thought of those voyagers as heroes, but rather as brave adventurers who knew very well the intrinsic risks of the task at hand when the countdown took place on that fateful day.

If you had asked them, the legacy of those astronauts and the unlucky school teacher who were aboard the Challenger 20-years ago would have been for mankind to continue its quest into the unknown, to continue to "boldly go where no man has gone before" and to "infinity and beyond", to borrow classic phrases from Captain Kirk and Buzz Lightyear.

I hope that Hawaii continues to provide astronauts and role models as kids here hopefully aspire to greater things.  As things are a bit crazy on the planet Earth these days, maybe the heavens and the international space station hold more promise than ever before.  Think about it...