Is There Life On Mars?

I have just discovered gold! Where? In a box full of crap that I have had sitting in a shed for about ten years. In 2003, I wrote a speech as part of a Lion’s Youth Of The Year competition. We had both prepared and impromptu speeches and had to debate on topics and share strong, teenager, hormone-fuelled opinions. I am sharing my speech with you because I find the topic I chose interesting: The Future. Also, part of me feels nostalgic for the fact that my writing style was so strong back then, with the exception of a few different tense issues that I still have today, but that is what The Literary Gangster is all about, man!

In particular I love how sarcastic I was being without even knowing it. This to me now, reflects the society I was in and its values – the most prominent being, fear. I was ridiculing politicians in a political speech without even knowing it! I blame – no credit! – my raging teenage hormones for this. Australia, what was a fairly laid back country then, was projecting fears on to my seventeen year old mind to control me. I love how I fought back! Anyway, here we go!


Is There Life On Mars?

By Tracie Lark, 2003.

Is there life on Mars? Will the world be led to destruction by human action? Will technology be the essential main principle in our lives to the extent that the role of the man and woman of the house becomes invaded and imposed upon by robots connected to power points (which also come battery operated!)?

Good evening chairman, ladies and gentlemen. As a seventeen year old girl, one of the subjects I am emphatically interested in and concerned for, is the future. And when I refer to ‘the future’, I mean the next twenty years or so. My speech tonight will leave you filled with a sense of curiosity as I question the vision for the future in twenty years time. What is is store for our future?

As a child, my small, ready-to-learn mind captured many pictures and words creating images of our future being invaded by green, goggly-eyes aliens from the planet Mars, or, of robotic beings doing the housework. Now I think that they were just misinterpretations in my imagination (though the robotic being doing the housework could be an idea conceived from watching my mother clean the house on a stressful Saturday). But the question frequently asked: ‘is there life on Mars?’ is the fundamental idea from which the concept of green aliens was created. Scientists are forever placing high technology on the planet Mars, in outer space and on the moon. Will these scientists take anther step in research and another giant leap for humankind by discovering that life forms found in outer space are the necessities for man to live outside the perimeters of earth?

As a young teenager, I looked through the telescope with thoughts that the environmental issues would surely destroy the world. I saw our neat environment carelessly turned in the world rubbish dump. I was certain that I would live to see the explosion of the sun, and the ozone layer’s depletion having its effect causing the polar ice caps to melt away, resulting in higher sea levels sucking towns beneath waves like a vacuum.

Then I panicked that the world would become so populated that we might have to live under the sea and, or, the surface of lakes might be divided and sold in shares just like land. These are ideas that came about because I was so eager to know what was in store for the future.

As I continued to grow, my mind was exposed to more ideas which made me believe that the world would surely end in twenty years time. Amidst my teenage years I saw death and hate, I saw drug infested streets, alcohol intoxicated lives, no care – but dare, car crashes, plane crashes, murder, suicide, rape, pure insanity! All of which led my train of thought casually cruising down the alley of world destruction.

As my mind develops further now as a young adult, I can clearly see clean up Australia day, recycling methods in use, I see drug injection rooms, I see breath testers, I see law and police, I see care, I see government, education and employment. I can see how the good helps the bad and that I have every right to feel safe and I can confidently see that the world isn’t going to end in the next twenty years!

But there are two important things in the future that concern me. One is cancer and the other is war. Will the cure for cancer ever be discovered? Will patients who are diagnosed ever have the luxury of knowing that something can be done about it? Scientists are forever trying to find how to save cancer patients from this terminal illness which is caused by harmful UV rays from the sun, smoking, and radioactivity. What really stuns me about our future is that it is ironic that whilst scientists are developing ways of helping cancer patients with radiotherapy, they are at the same time using radiation to construct nuclear weapons to use for killing people in wars. How does that work?

And will that nuclear warhead ruin the chance of life for millions, for all? At the present time, nobody really knows what could happen. But with recent terrorist attacks, religious demonstrations and war declarations, one thing is for sure; world war three is just around the corner. So hold on to your hats ladies and gentlemen because the next few years could be a rocky ride of confusion and many lives are at risk. Many of our lives are at risk. This is our future.

But over the next twenty years nothing may change too dramatically. No living on water, no living in outer space, no cure for cancer and no war. Probably just a few extra taxes, a new Australian Prime Minister and a Sony Playstation 3!!!! After all, its only twenty years from now.

So is the future in our hands? Is the future our responsibility? Or will fate take its place? Will God be at the steering wheel? And if he is…does that mean that we should lay back, relax, enjoy life and let that heavenly spirit guide us through the years? Or do we act now?! Save the trees, rid of the druggos, imprison the serial killers, put in all of the hard work believing that the work we put in now will benefit our future and what if in the end after all of that work, God might decide to change the direction and go North instead. Who can we ask? Where do we find the answers? And after those twenty years, after man has learned everything intended to know? What then? Do we carry on living every day of our lives like the Sunday that pops up once a week?

And so, we will never know what the future is until it is the past. And we can learn from the past to create our future. As a youth it is important to set our interest on an equilibrium of the past, present and future.

The question I asked in the beginning ladies and gentlemen – ‘what is in store for the future?’; I wonder if it should really be: ‘what has the future got in store for us?’