Fifty-five years ago, humanity began its journey into the cosmos. The technological advances that were required to take our first steps came from a huge variety of fields, and many of these advances were subsequently co-opted for needs back on earth.
Their research, a hydroponic plant growth system that relies on centripetal force to work in microgravity, almost ended there, until they met someone with industry experience and an alternative way to raise capital.
Testing a truly new rocket has always involved failure. In fact, the development of any complex and innovative product should feature an iterative development process. By definition such a process is "failure driven."
We must contact our representatives and voice our opinions that NASA is worth it. The technological benefits resulting from our investment in NASA and her programs show up in Walmart, Target and Costco with time.
These missions don't present threats to life on Earth -- unlike the use of nuclear power overhead. Also, the production of nuclear fuel on Earth for use in space -- or in the atmosphere for drones -- constitutes danger, too.