Buzz Aldrin, G.I. Joe

Buzz Aldrin is an astronaut. Second man to walk on the moon. He’s one of the closest things to a real sci-fi hero we’ve got.

So to hear him slamming science fiction because it’s the reason people aren’t interested in the real space program–it’s a bit of a shock, frankly:

But, if you start dealing with fantasy and beaming people up and down and traveling seven times the speed of light, you are doing damage. You’re not helping. You have young people who have got expectations that are far unrealistic, and you can’t possibly live up to the expectations you have created in young people.

Anyway, I would submit that this is entirely the wrong approach. Doc points out that a lot of space geeks get sucked in because they’re sci-fi geeks. So slamming the genre isn’t the answer. Instead, I would say do the NASA equivalent of the Shatner “Get a Life” speech.

You want results from us? You’re disappointed in US? You still live with your parents! And forget making it to Mars in six hours–you’ve never made it to third base! It would cost more for you to go and get yourself a quality hooker than you pay out of your taxes to fund us trying to get this species off-world. We’re the reason you even have a joystick to waste your life playing games with and we’re the reason that an MRI will save your life after you sit on your ass for years and let your body turn to goo. So you can go to hell, buddy. Oh and by the way–you’re welcome.”

Slap that on YouTube and have done with it, I say. Put me in charge of PR, NASA. My rates are very reasonable.

Found via io9.