Recent posts have taken a short sharp look at some of the obstacles that would have to be overcome to get to another planet on which we might live. Basically, these are finding a habitable planet in the first place, the second is the task of actually getting ourselves there. Assuming we survived for what at this point looks like about 250 generations travelling in a space ship to get there, surviving on a new planet is also a daunting task.
The past is only partly encouraging. 120 thousand years ago, a band of humans left Africa, but the evidence is that within 20 thousand years they had all died. A second expedition about 90 thousand years ago is the one which succeeded. Even then, about 75 thousand years ago, DNA evidence suggests that the human population was reduced to less than 20 thousand people, and remained at that number for thousands of years. Challenging as it was, the trek out of Africa was on the same planet where we have always lived.
Similarly, it is only within the last 500 years that humans have really begun to move around the globe and returned to tell the tale. Some returned at least. Many never did. In some ways, going to the moon was less terrifying than setting out to circumnavigate the world, and is more instructive for imagining what life on a new planet might be like.
Like the earlier emigrants, people arriving on a new planet might be met with hostile inhabitants who are already there. Would they welcome us? To answer this question, it might be interesting to turn the question around: how would we humans typically respond to newcomers arriving from outer space? All the evidence is that we would response with fear. At the very least, we would try to control and imprison the new arrivals, and if in doubt would certainly be willing to kill them.
Assuming they were not killed upon arrival, the new immigrants would have to solve the basic problems of water, food, and shelter. If they had already survived 5000 years on a space ship, one would assume that the internecine warfare to which we humans are so pathologically addicted would be under control, and a workable, permanent social structure in place.
If all these difficulties could be met, my own guess is that human ingenuity and creativity could build another new world.
Do you think these problems are solvable? If so, would you be willing to be one of the first generation to step onto a space ship headed for a new planet in outer space with the hope that your distant offspring would someday land in a truly New World?