Everyone looks at the past and thinks how good we had it then. Times were simpler. We have lost those times, assuming we ever had them. Humans have always been a restless species. We are not like the wildebeest on the African plains always moving to areas where new shoots of grass grow. No, we are just moving.
Our earliest ancestors moved out of Africa into Asia and Europe. Why? We aren’t sure. They could have been following game, or just exploring. We are a curious species as well. Daniel Boone used to say that he wanted more elbowroom, as he packed up his family and moved them west. Maybe that’s what drove the emigration. The hunting territories were filling up. Whatever the reason, humankind went on the move and we haven’t stopped yet.
In colonial times, people moved from the Old World to the New World. Some were looking for freedom to practice their religion, but didn’t want to grant that freedom to anyone else. Others were looking to get rich and still others were looking for land and a place to live. It doesn’t matter humans were on the move. They spread like a disease over the world. Now we are looking to Mars, still on the move. This time, it’s for exploration, although I suspect we are looking for more minerals to consume as we consume this world. I doubt we will find oil on Mars, but we might find other minerals. We are also eying the moon again. We’ve been there once; several times actually, we know we can reach it. We know what minerals we can find there. We just have to come up with a reason to go back and stay for longer periods.
Humankind is looking for more elbowroom. There is no place, on Earth, where we can spread out. Added to that, the political climate is not conducive to expansion in any case. Well there is the Sahara, which is too close to a political hot spot to work with in complete safety. So, we have looked to Mars. Mars is a whole planet that is just similar enough to Earth for us to live there. There are problems of course, the atmosphere on Mars is just too thin to support human life and while there may be water there, it is probably locked in the rocks. We have to solve those problems first. We could build an underground complex on Mars, which would serve the dual purpose of allowing us to increase the atmospheric pressure in a confined space for us to live, work and play and the need we will have for protection from the radiation from the sun that bathes the planets. Earth’s atmosphere and magnetosphere protects us here, Mars atmosphere is too thin and its magnetosphere is either nonexistent or close to it.
Fortunately, there doesn’t appear to be any natives for us to push aside. There’s no life on the moon. If there is life on Mars, it’s microscopic and buried deep in the planet’s crust. Don’t worry though, we’ll figure a way to mess it up.