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©Matt Davies/Newsday
NASA Tapped Out?
This week, the U.S. space agency NASA announced that liquid water has been found on the surface of Mars, boosting the possibility that life could exist on the Red Planet. But plans to send humans to Mars might be further delayed as NASA faces budget cuts.
  1. Who is the figure in the cartoon and what does he represent? What about the bucket he’s holding?
  2. What does the faucet represent, and why is only one drop of water coming out of it?
  3. What’s ironic about the cartoon’s title, “Traces of Water”?
  4. What point is the cartoonist trying to make? Do you agree or disagree? Explain.
  5. What might be some of the reasons the government has been steadily decreasing funding to NASA’s programs in the past 20 years?
  6. NASA has been conducting unmanned Mars missions for more than five decades. Do you think a human mission to Mars is worth funding no matter what the cost?