Saturday, November 17, 2007

Excerpt from Death on Mars

“Death was common on the first extraterrestrial colonies of man. The colonists and the crews of the pod ships grew so accustomed to it that they got to the point where they barely noticed it. Besides, the bodies of the dead were promptly disposed of in a manner that earlier civilizations would have objected to. Given the lack of organic material on the colonies, and the expense of shipping the bodies back to earth, the dead started to be looked upon as a viable source of organic material for the budding eco-gardens that were the heart of the new colonies. Basically, the colonists decided that the dead were good compost, something that would have appalled previous civilizations.”

--Chapter 13 (Composting the Dead). Life and Death Among the Stars--The Starfaring Citizen’s Guide to the Ethics of Life and Death. S.L. Spokane.

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