Problems and potential
Despite the attention all of this brings to the Space Force, if people are so deeply influenced by fiction that they find the USSF funny or absurd, it could lead to a disconnect between public expectations and what the USSF actually does. Space Force, and ultimately, reduce public support.
While missions such as surveillance and tracking of satellites and space debris may not be as interesting as “Star Wars” stories, they are fundamental to the global economy and national security.
While the Space Force has nurtured these perceptions to some extent – for example, by using the name Kobayashi Maru from “Star Trek” for one of its software – there are ways in which science fiction can be helpful to the new military branch. Science fiction can be inspiring, as it was in the space race of the 1960s and is for space leaders today.
Modern pop culture’s interest in space can also be used to leverage interest in the Space Force. Although he does not engage in any kind of “Star Trek” exploration, his tasks are nevertheless important and inspiring. Without the GPS satellites that the Space Force is now responsible for, we wouldn’t be able to get money from an ATM, coordinate financial transactions, or monitor things like volcanoes or earthquakes.
The reality portrayed in “Star Trek” is hundreds of years in the future. While Space Force could be a first step towards this reality; this is only the first of a long series. As General Mark Naird says in the Netflix comedy series “Space Force,” “space is tough.” While not as glamorous as Hollywood, the hard work to advance US national interests in space matters.
This story originally appeared on The conversation. Read the original here.