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Author Topic:   Kennedy's challenge

Posts: 821
From: Sandpoint, ID, USA
Registered: Mar 2003

posted 05-25-2006 08:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dss65   Click Here to Email dss65     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
On my way to work this morning, I was listening to ESPN radio. They always have a blurb about "this day in history" by The History Channel. Today, they announced Kennedy's challenge. Inspired, when I got to work, I sent out an office-wide email:

"On this day in 1961, John Kennedy challenged this nation to put a man on the moon and return him safely to earth by the end of the decade.

It was one of the craziest, stupidest challenges ever made. The Wright brothers had made the first heavier-than-air powered flight less than 60 years earlier.

Americaís experience in manned space flight consisted of Alan Shepardís 15-minute suborbital flight 20 days earlier. To go to the moon would require facilities that hadnít been built, materials that hadnít been invented, technologies that hadnít yet been dreamed of.

Although Kennedy didnít live to see it, America met the challenge on July 20, 1969."

I realize that I borrowed freely from my memory of things like episodes of FTETTM, and that you could argue the exact accuracy of my comments (for example, they had not "returned him safely to earth" by 7/20/69), but, hey, I'm not perfect.

I got a few responses, all positive. A very important day in history, IMHO.



Posts: 888
From: UK
Registered: Apr 2005

posted 05-27-2006 05:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for issman1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I heard from some radio or TV programme a while back that before he was assassinated, Kennedy wanted to end the space race in favour of co-operation with the Russians.
If that is true then the last 40 years of human spaceflight have been a missed opportunity.
A space programme driven by national prestige is truly myopic as Apollo showed.

New Member


posted 05-27-2006 05:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for trajan   Click Here to Email trajan     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
"Truly myopic as Apollo showed"...?

How can going TO THE MOON be shortsighted?!!!!


Posts: 1705
From: Newnan GA (USA)
Registered: Aug 2005

posted 05-28-2006 01:29 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for capoetc   Click Here to Email capoetc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Originally posted by trajan:
"Truly myopic as Apollo showed"...?

How can going TO THE MOON be shortsighted?!!!!

Websters defines "myopic" as "lacking in foresight or discernment."

If the point is that a space program based on national prestige (rather than a long-term plan for exploration) will meet its goal and then stop, then myopic might be exactly the right word for it.

John Capobianco
Camden DE

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