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"People of America, it's untrue that I'm 'hedging the country's bets,' as someone recently put it. What is true is that I believe in America, and everything that America stands for: truth, democracy, and the freedom for each and every individual to pursue his or her dreams unencumbered by fear or want. That is why I have backed Colonism from the very first moment of my public life, that is why, with the help of my party colleagues, I pushed the necessary legislation through Congress in the first days of my first term, the legislation authorizing NASA to construct the facilities, both here on Earth and on the far side of the Moon, and to conduct the tests necessary for the Colonization of other hospitable planets.

"No, I have not given up on this planet, and I have not given up on America." Goodall half-turned and spread his right arm back to the exact replica of the Capitol dome destroyed by a terrorist attack more than eight years before. "Behind me today is solid proof of our nation's willingness to defy the evil in this world, our willingness to pull ourselves back from the brink of defeat and move on with our national life."

Goodall turned back. "But the proper course for this nation is not a renewed isolationism. No, quite the contrary: humankind's future is not only on the surface of this globe, but also in the stars, or rather, around them." He jabbed his finger toward the deep blue sky. "And I want to see to it that the American way of life, the way of truth, democracy, and freedom, finds its place among the stars!"

Now Goodall was forced into silence by the latest roar. His next sentence brought even more enthusiasm. "It is for this reason that, after extended consultations with the directors of the Space Colonization Program, the date of July Fourth, twenty twenty-one has been chosen as the launch date of the mission to the first hospitable, Earth-like planet found outside our own solar system, Forty-Seven UMa Gamma..."

First Star by W.R. Hammons:

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