The first part of Neil Armstrong's "rehearsed" speech upon setting foot on the moon was the only part that was accurate.
It was a "small step" and I cannot find it within myself to mark this anniversary with the accord it is due.
Beyond walking on the surface of another world what has mankind achieved in the last 50 years?
Where it really counts almost nothing!
People across the world still die in their hundreds every day from hunger.
People across the world still die in their hundreds every day from disease.
Species become extinct so quickly it barely registers on our radar anymore.
As Iran shows we still haven''t lost our taste for conflict.
As Yemen shows we still have a startling capacity for genocide.
No great rise for the ordinary man as every major city across the world has an army of homeless on it's streets.
Mankind still judges another on the colour of skin, sex, religion, sexual orientation blah blah.
We (all of us) are killing OUR planet with slow poisoning and torture.
Our children's future now looks like a return to medieval times.
But we have a ballpoint pen that pumps ink to the tip!
On the same day that those words were uttered we could sit down and watch the Jetsons for a possible glimpse of our future and we have spectacularly failed to make any progress towards that future, we might as well have been watching the Flintstones!
Who is to blame? Easy to blame the politicians but in truth we are.
The giant leap could have come if we had demanded that we go to Mars and beyond but instead we sat on our backsides while the Apollo programme atrophied to its ignominious and inevitable death of earth orbit and reusable short range craft.
We have allowed war to be the innovator of technology instead of a peaceful collaborative exploration where we advanced by the scale of problems to be solved not the genocide of everything.
It's time to take a long hard look at ourselves as a race in the light of those words, examine our potential and conclude that the only giant leap has been downwards.