Tag Archives: Progress

Progress Requires Struggle 

frederick douglass

“The whole history of the progress of human liberty shows that all concessions yet made to her august claims have been born of earnest struggle… If there is no struggle there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom and yet deprecate agitation are men who want crops without plowing up the ground; they want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters. This struggle may be a moral one, or it may be a physical one, and it may be both moral and physical, but it must be a struggle. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.”


― Frederick Douglass

 

Organic Chemistry Takes Place In The Void Of Space

The excellent New Scientist Magazine reports that organic chemistry takes places on asteroids that are flying around in space.

(Above–The asteroid known as 951 Gaspra. Here are some facts about asteroids.)

From New Scientist—

“For the first time, rocks from an asteroid have been shown to power the synthesis of life’s essential chemicals. The asteroid in question fell to Earth on 28 September 1969, landing on the outskirts of the village of Murchison in Victoria, Australia. Tests showed it was laced with amino acids and some of the chemicals found in our genetic material. The discovery suggested that space was not the chemically sterile place it was once thought to be, and that organic chemistry was widespread. It hinted that the molecules life needed to get started could have been produced in space, before dropping to Earth.”

I find this discovery encouraging. Positive–even “creative”— things can happen in an environment as hostile as outer space.

I don’t know about you, but I often feel I must be on the moon or in another galaxy, because surely the crazy and mean-spirited behavior I witness and read about each day cannot be of this Earth.

I’m glad that even in what might seem to be a void, hopeful things can happen.

So when you feel you are in a void of decency because of some barbaric public policy idea, or in an intellectual void because everything you are hearing makes so little sense, just think of all those asteroids flying around brewing up various chemicals and amino acids.

It is almost always possible to make some kind of progress.