The BBC reports today that a wife and mother in Austin, Texas has signed up for a one-way ticket to Mars with the Dutch company behind reality TV show, Big Brother. Sonia Van Meter is currently on a shortlist of around 700 hopefuls to be part of a 20-40 strong team to set up a colony on Mars beginning in 2024.
The article is very interesting, particularly all the plans that various private companies have for Mars, however what propelled me to write this post is what Sonia is leaving behind – a husband and step children. I can not fathom why she would want to do it.
My idea of marriage is about dreaming together, growing together and reaching goals together.
Yes, of course I understand how cool this opportunity is – to be one of the first humans to inhabit another planet, not to mention all the potential contributions to science and learning.
But there is one problem – if Sonia is selected, she’s never coming back.
Here is what Sonia says about her choice.
“This is the biggest risk I’ll ever take, but some things are worth that risk,” says Van Meter. “If there isn’t something out there you’re willing to put down your life for, you haven’t really found what you want in life. I feel quite lucky.”
There is no risk here. It’s pretty much a suicide mission. Risk implies there’s an exit plan and they don’t have one. Also, I don’t think it’s something worth dying for at all – there’s plenty of causes right here on earth that are worthy of that.