Standing Rock as an Earth-based example of interests colliding, where you have indigenous people opposing a large-scale project that, much like space exploration, features cooperation between private industry and the government...
Private-public partnership isn’t a new thing. It’s baked into the history of space exploration. Today, a lot of the rhetoric about new space companies is that people have the impression that the billionaires at the helms are dumping their own money into it, which might be true in part, but they’re also contractors getting money from federal governments to fund what they’re doing. It’s harmful for them to imply that they’re not working with public funds.
There’s a matter of inclusion—space exploration is something that we all take part in. That’s true of public missions and not private companies. Their aims are often different from what people think about. We have to think about the way we talk about who goes to space—who’s included in the conversation in who’s not. One of the fundamental things to do is just include [those normally left out of these discussions] in the conversation in a real way, such that they’re actually listened to.