I’m as big a “Star Wars” fan as most others obsessed by the nearly 40-year old science fiction tale, but even I wouldn’t sign a petition currently making the rounds.
This petition, which has already been signed by 4,000 people, calls for the U.S. government to construct the Death Star.
Yeah, I’m referring to the Empire’s evil man-made planet that has enough firepower to destroy make believe planets, as Alderaan discovered in the original “Star Wars” movie. That Death Star.
The petition can be found on the White House’s official petition website, “We the People.” The creator of the petition, “John D” of Longmont, Colo., posted the petition Nov. 14, calling for 25,000 signatures by Dec. 14.
He’ll need a lot of signatures in a week’s time to reach that goal, as he’s collected less than 20 percent so far. Those who wish to sign the petition can do so online at petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/secure-resources-and-funding-and-begin-construction-death-star-2016/wlfKzFkN.
What would they be signing if they choose to do so? It’s short, and it reads:
“Those who sign here petition the United States government to secure funding and resources, and begin construction on a Death Star by 2016.
“By focusing our defense resources into a space-superiority platform and weapon system such as a Death Star, the government can spur job creation in the fields of construction, engineering, space exploration, and more, and strengthen our national defense.”
While the petition’s purpose is admirable, let’s be realistic in four words: It can’t be done.
The U.S. Space Program barely exists right now, as all of its space shuttles have been retired, and the private sector has been encouraged to find ways to get people and ships to space. Heck, we haven’t even been to the moon in 40 years, so expecting the government to get enough material and resources to space to physically do this is less likely to happen than someone winning the Powerball jackpot who doesn’t buy a Powerball ticket.
Forgetting about the logistics for a minute and imagining it as being possible, would you want to give our government – or any government for that matter – the ability to destroy planets. The way our government operates it would probably accidentally destroy this one. That would be one big oops.
Getting back to John D’s purpose of creating more jobs raises a huge question. Wouldn’t such an endeavor be the biggest expenditure ever in order to create new jobs? In my by-no-means-accurate assessment of the cost, I figure it would cost at least 12,000 zillion dollars to fund it, and even if it created one million jobs, which is probably an overestimate, you’d still be spending way too much for the number of jobs it creates.
George Lucas was wise to sell the “Star Wars” rights last month to Disney for $4 billion, as no one person should be responsible for a creation that inspires people to petition the government to create the make-believe items portrayed in it.
Disney, that outwardly lovable organization with a tough-as-nails inner dark side, is the perfect owner, as it simply won’t give the U.S. government the rights to the Death Star. Beware of Mickey Mouse, though, as you never know what might be up his sleeve. He might find a way to create the Death Star for a future Disney-themed park. Then we should all worry.