The One Thing Back to the Future Got Right

It’s October 21, 2015. Today is the day Marty McFly time traveled into the future. But, now it’s the present. Soon to be the past.

But, look outside. There are no flying cars, hoverboards, or holographic movies. In fact, besides vehicles being sleeker and shinier than their 1989 counterparts, a quick glance wouldn’t reveal too many changes over the last 26 years. We know this isn’t true. There are pocket computers operated by a series of wireless data transceivers. Autonomous cars roam the streets of California. Our thermostats detect our presence. We harness the sun and wind like never before.

Despite all of these improvements, do you know what Back to the Future got most right? We’re still here and thriving.

Only 7 days after the release of Back to the Future II, the spokesman for East Berlin’s Communist Party announced a change in his city’s relations with the West. ( The wall itself didn’t come down until the next year.

At the time the script was written, there was still a cold war. Countries were armed and ready to fire nuclear weapons. (They still are). But, despite the conflicts around the globe, there was still hope that we would survive and thrive!

There has been a chance that we would annihilate ourselves, but here we are, 26 years, several wars, a terrorist attack on American soil, a few recessions, and countless threats later, we are here. We survived. We thrived. We build infrastructure to carry our data through space, across oceans, and into each of our homes. We landed robots on Mars. We took pictures of galaxies at the beginning of time. We did things that we couldn’t have begun to imagine in 1989.

Ok, so maybe there aren’t 19 Jaws sequels, but we did get 4 more Star Wars! So, surviving and Star Wars. That’s better than any future predicted in 1989.