One giant leap for mankind

It was 48 years ago today that Neil Armstrong became the first person to set foot on the moon.

moon1

In the following three years, five more successful missions to the moon’s surface were completed (and one, Apollo 13, that didn’t quite get there). By December, 1972, 12 people had walked on the moon. No one has been there in the 45 years since then. No one has even left low earth-orbit.

moon2

The primary reason we undertook the moon-landing adventure was to beat the Soviet Union and assert our dominance in the “space race”. To the lay person all these years later, it doesn’t seem like we got much out of it, though physicists, materials scientists, cosmologists, and others would disagree.

It all seems like it happened a million years ago. In fact, to a lot of people, it seems like it never happened.

This morning, when I googled “Moon landing 1969”, I got 1,620,000 hits. Pretty good. Then I googled “Moon landing hoax” and got 3,730,000 hits. Turns out, the whole thing was probably a big phony government cover-up. Thank God for the internet – I’d be walking around with all the wrong info without it.

Your president is keeping an open mind about it so far. One of his most trusted advisers, Roger Stone, knows that the moon landings were faked.

stone

But Tweety hasn’t taken a firm position, on the record at least. Campaigning in Sacramento a year ago, he seemed on the fence about it:

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump said today he believes the moon landing in 1969 was real but “many people” believe the whole thing was orchestrated by the federal government to impress the world and scare the Soviets. “I’m not saying I believe that, but many people have questions about it,” Trump said at a campaign appearance here. “There are people who know about these things who say they saw the interior of a warehouse in Los Angeles converted to look like the surface of the moon, complete with fine dust and craters and the whole thing. Lot of tinfoil lying around. Did NASA hire a Hollywood crew to distract us from Vietnam? I don’t know.”’

To paraphrase Armstrong: One step for a small man.

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