Originally created 08/02/97

Cites benefits of U.S. space program



In response to Roger Sanderson's July 30 letter, the money put into the space program has not been wasted. It has given mankind new insight into our existence in the universe and has brought about a long list of technological benefits that have improved the lives of every American.

Velcro and Tang aren't the only spin-offs from NASA missions. Satellites have revolutionized the world. People in coastal communities now have enough time to evacuate from approaching hurricanes, and anyone can watch live events from anywhere.

The notion that funding for NASA should be reallocated to increase the size of the military in peacetime is preposterous. Space research and development have created an entire industry and have given the United States a competitive edge in the world economy. If funding were to be eliminated, the Europeans and the Japanese would soon capture all of this lucrative market.

Intangible benefits should also be considered. A recent survey found interest in the space program to be the most significant factor in inspiring students in the areas of math and science. We must continue to look to the long term and how future generations will profit from continued exploration.

Jack Cohoon, Augusta