A People's History of the Federation and why I joined the Space Corps
I think a lot about why I joined the Space Corps rather than serving in the Space Patrol (those intergalactic "peacekeepers" you may have heard about) like both my dads did. I've always had a rebellious streak. By this I mean I was rebellious in the only ways that a data junky like me can be as a kid: I built secret communications receivers in our attic.
I picked up lots of stuff with my DIY equipment. Learned stuff I wasn't supposed to know. Through a databurst I picked up that I believe was called a People's History of The Federation, I learned that the initial growing pains of the Solar Federation look a lot like the ways the Federation is still struggling to uphold it's stated values today.
The Space Patrol didn't always have the "peacekeeper" branding it does now. In the beginning, they were sent to squash dissent on worlds on the outskirts of the Federation's territory. People on the outlying worlds felt that the relative utopia the Federation was able to achieve in the core worlds wouldn't ever make it all the way to the outskirts and they were better off on their own. I'm no economist but from what I've seen, they weren't wrong. With a bare minimum standard of living established across the Federation, even the outskirts, they declared scarcity a thing of the past. However, the problems those brave rebels shed light on still persisted. The bare minimum was not enough but it quieted the people for the time being and the Federation moved on. The Space Patrol has a more sanitized and glorified image nowadays. The authors of that datablast believed that those issues and the way the Federation dealt with them back then were coming back to haunt us.
The Space Corps, from what I've pieced together over the years, seems to have started, in part, as a means to clean up the aftermath of the Federation's inadequacies. It was a bandaid. It probably still is. I don't know how much I believe the conclusions that datablast came to but I do know that I want to help make things better for folks and maybe right some wrongs. Seems to me like even a bandaid would help more than a lasergun, metaphorically I mean. If a space worm is trying to eat your ship, guns are probably the way to go. Anyway, I think, on our best days, the Space Corps is doing work that extends beyond the imaginations of even the "utopic" Federation and their Space Patrol.