posted 05-25-2006 08:37 PM
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.