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Reading Script – Robert Lerner – Speech 2 – What is Safety

Robert Lerner – Speech

Speech 2 – Safety

People often say that it’s not safe in space. “It’s not safe!” As if safety were the measure of what we can and cannot do.
I say that the Earth is not safe.

Ten billion people on the Earth today. Ten Billion!

The Earth was never made to support that kind of population. We would have died out long ago if advances in science didn’t make miracles happen. Miracles happen every day here on Earth. Our Agricultural advances and computer-controlled supply and distribution systems are the miracle that makes our civilization happen.

But they are just that, miracles. We couldn’t have planned for them to happen. People predicted that the Earth would run out of food in the 1970s. That masses would starve to death. But they did not because our technology advanced just enough to save us from starvation. We were lucky. But we can’t rely on luck to take us into the twenty-second century. The odds are that our Luck won’t hold out.

Do you know what happens when you put too many rats in a cage with a limited food supply? They fight. They kill each other. They destroy themselves.

If miracles don’t happen. If things go in a logical, predictable fashion, then our food supply will begin to run out. That situation will occur here on Earth sooner than you might think.

We are at a delicate time in history. Today, we are doing fine. What about tomorrow? The smallest problem … a drought or crop failure…could be the stone that would cause civilization to spiral out of control. The problem that would make our overcrowded Earth into that rat’s cage.

And if civilization does fall, what happens to us then? What happens to the technological infrastructure that makes these miracles possible? We could lose the ability to go into Space at all.

You say that Space is not safe. The Earth is not safe. As long as we have no outlet for our population. As long as we have no horizons to expand to, humanity will never be safe.

Open your eyes. Space is the answer. Join us.

(Applause)

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