For the most part of history, humanity has not known of the existence of the infinity that is the universe right above the horizon and as such has lived sheltered and somewhat ignorant lives, away from the truth. Today however, there is no such luxury, the knowledge of what is out there is widely spread and this in turn has sparked many dreams of the future. It is impossible to miss it. Some of the most successful creations in literature, movies, games, art, music just to name a few, have as focus the cosmos and what lies within it. Countless children have grown up imagining to be astronauts and space explorers by watching Kirk and Picard in their role as fearless and brave captains.
It is easy to dismiss such creations as simple wishful thinking, but those two characters are meant to embody some of the virtues that most individuals aspire to. Kirk being brave and without fear, whilst Picard representing the scholar, explorer and the principled. It is no mistake that in most of the artistic representations of a future spacefaring human society, characters embody the best of human virtues, because that is what it will probably take in order to advance to that level.
The role that these creations play, be it movies, books, games, is to inspire future generations that the future is out there and it is up to them to reach out and grab it. It should be noted that the very survival of the human race may very well depend on it successfully leaving the cradle of planet Earth, for as long as it resides solely there, it is always one unfortunate cosmic event away from extinction. Luckily there are individuals in this world with wealth, brains and the vision necessary to set the course of a better future for humanity, and it is up to the rest to support them.