Opinion / Politics

American Astronauts on an American Rocket – Back in the Game!

americanWhen Americans put their minds, hearts, and souls into a mission – we get it done.  In that simple notion, not without backsteps but with resilience and determination, lies great hope.  Historians know this – from Yorktown to Normandy, Anzio to Apollo – we do not give up. We saw that again today.

A full 55 years after America first put two men in space on one rocket, Gus Grissom and John Young on Gemini 3, America has done it again – this time on a SpaceX rocket, and astronauts Doug Hurley (USMC, two time Shuttle pilot) and Bob Behnken (USAF Col, two time Shuttle crew).  Congratulations, power to America’s manned future in space, and onward!

 

Details matter, and this launch has at least five details worth contemplating.

First, America has not launched American astronauts from American soil on an American-made rocket since the last Shuttle mission, number 135 on orbiter Atlantis – in 2011. Fittingly, the mission’s pilot was Doug Hurley, former F/A 18 Super Hornet pilot – who now commands SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft.

President Trump recognized the two-man crew as pioneers in a new age of American human space flight, honoring them as heroes. From the Cape, he set the record straight – celebrating the moment, restoration of America’s capacity to launch men and women into space. We should never have lost it – and have now regained it.

In Trump’s 2019 State of the Union, he promised “Americans will go back to space on American rockets.”  Media guffawed.  After May 30’s SpaceX launch, the President noted: “A new age of American ambition has now begun,” and “those of us who saw the spectacular and unforgettable lift off this afternoon watched more than an act of history …We watched an act of heroism.”

To this he added: “The United States has regained our place of prestige as a world leader, as has often been stated, you can’t be number one on Earth if you are number two in space … and we are not going to be number two anywhere.”

That now settled, a second detail:  Beyond establishing the “National Space Council” and starting the national “Space Force” to assure space-based security, Trump’s 2020 State of the Union offered a different promise.

The President pledged America to press deeper into space – exploring that final frontier. “In reaffirming our heritage as a free nation, we must remember that America has always been a frontier nation,” he said in January 2020.

Echoing President John Kennedy – 59 years ago – Trump pledged: “We must embrace the next frontier: America’s manifest destiny in the stars,” funding “the Artemis program to ensure that the next man and first woman on the moon will be American astronauts, using this as a launching pad to ensure that America is the first nation to plant its flag on Mars.”  Now there is a goal –two goals – worth America’s focus.

Third fact: As the nation wrestles vexing, hard-to-fix challenges – a modern plague, international adversaries, economic woes, race relations – a moment of unity occurred today.

Not unlike the 1960s, when racial and cultural divisions wracked our nation, human space exploration again offers a chance for wide-eyed wonder, genuine curiosity, technological regeneration, common pause, and patriotism.

In a word, the launch today offered a moment of national unity, pride in shared heritage and common purpose. We are a nation of doers, as much as dreamers. We are a nation unbowed, undeterred, not to be driven off course, caused to forget who we are, or what we can do.  We live for these challenges and we surmounted one together – today.  America is back in space.

Fourth, the launch today offered a window into America’s future in another way.  The launch demonstrated America’s capacity for technical can-do. We will not depend on foreign partners to launch our astronauts, nor the Russian RD-180 engines to support our rockets.

We will not place ourselves at the mercy of a foreign nation for space exploration, any more than we will – in the future – place our health and security, pharmaceutical industry, information technology, supply chains, or destiny in the hands of Communist China.

America is coming of age, for a second – or perhaps a 244th – time.  From 1776 to now, we have been and will be composed of liberty-minded, self-reliant individuals.  We would rather fight for truth and find a way to it on our own, than become beholden to an adversary.  That goes for space – and for everything else.

Finally, today represents an inflection point in America’s understanding of ourselves.  When Mercury astronauts launched on dicey rockets, Gemini astronauts on Titan II ICBMs, and Apollo astronauts atop “the candle” of Saturn 1B and 5 rockets, Americans were in awe of what America could do.

With each new iteration and brave step into space – we came to know ourselves again.  We came to trust ourselves again.  We are doing so now, again.  As with Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo – not to mention Skylab, Shuttle, and Space Station – we are again in awe of who we are. The victory of American engineering – is a victory for all Americans.

So, in the middle of what seems an unending plague or nuisance – depending on where you live – and urban upheavals around race relations, remember that America at our best – is the best.

That is the truth, plain and simple.  History proves it, daily we live it, and we should pause to take heart from it.  When Americans put their minds, hearts, and souls into a mission – we get it done.  In that simple fact, lies strength. We saw that strength come to life again – last weekend.

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James Dix
1 year ago

Great article Mr. Charles! The United States of America is the greatest country in the world and will get through the recent self inflicted wounds – the Wuhan virus and riots.

artzymom
1 year ago

I am so thrilled that our space race is back in the USA…. Obama was a disaster to Nasa and all things good. I was a young teenage when Kennedy announced going into space and every time they showed the launches our family were glued to the TV. Loved every minute of it and we have so many things we use today because of the program. The most memorable to me as a kid was Tang orange drink…. it was not invented by NASA but it was taken into space and made famous because the astronauts drank it…..I still like it.

Barb
1 year ago

Thank you R.B. Charles for a very good article. I can’t believe this is the first I heard that we had launched. I saw nothing of this news on the tv. What a wonderful moment of reprieve to “good news” for a change. Thank you again.

Phil Hammersley
1 year ago

What a contrast! Our president accomplishing great things– return to space, growing (again) economy and stock market, standing up to Chinese communists. DIMM mayors and governors–allowing riots in the streets, prohibiting church services, obstructing progress.
We MUST get people out to vote against the DIMM House and Senate members!

James Gurley
1 year ago

The mention of President Kennedy is admirable as I have always felt from that unfortunate death that this was the beginning of a plot to overthrow our Constitutional values. The beginning of propaganda by the media to join in and begin the new world utopian government. Thank the dear lord for whatever reason Trump became president. The Democratic Party has taken a left turn into communism and because of their greed they have “in your face” antics and create a world wide planned attack on all of DEMOCRACY. People are using a term of republic but let us remember the only republic taught was the USSR and by no means does the US ever want or need to be compared to that republic, although many will ARGUE the point. I lived thru the era of drills in school hiding under our desks in case Kruschev pushed the button. Many people don’t know that President Kennedy visited him with his family and this is how we kept from being bombed. Russia has taken Kruschv out of their history for not bombing America and now this is not even taught in school since this is the movement toward new world order to have every American to hate one another and cause the chaos we now see within our own BORDERS!

Linda Colby
1 year ago

This is really good and uplifting !

Larry Watkins
1 year ago

Thank you AMAC, and Mr. Charles !!! for standing with our President ? and your readeres.

Brenda Blunt
1 year ago

Well done USA. thank you Mr. President for pushing Americans to do more and to be the best again!!

Patriot Will
1 year ago

On C-Span I listened to a Costa Rican woman who lives in America speak enthusiastically how proud she was for the USA in its successful space launch. She was so full of emotion and enthusiasm it moved me to tears of joy. On the other hand, I think of all the thugs and hard core punks who are attacking and killing our police and innocent civilians — all the innocent merchants whose stores are being looted, burned, and destroyed — I cry tears of sorrow and disdain.

Sergio Olivares
1 year ago
Reply to  Patriot Will

Will I am very sad with as you also thank you for the courageous person you are, to let us know why you cry for and sorrow in disdain, I’m have something to telling to those to act-like-mobs. Those who choose to violate the Eternal law and that choice there inevitably will fallow consequences and they earning the wages of sin are spiritual and physical death .

HelenC
1 year ago

Best advice from woman in Nashville to violent protestors. Stay away from Nashville. We don’t want you here.

aluminum head
1 year ago

D. T. is the best since Geo. Washington. But we need to pay down our debt and live by the Constitution. Obama wasted enuff’ of our money over 8 years.

Larry Jones
1 year ago

great job America and Space X great job Mr. President.

SheilaP
1 year ago

Wake up people! Why are we going to space? This is just another distraction from our government to keep us from looking at what the real agenda is. Be very careful about being too boastful and so proud of being number one. History shows that the proud and boastful are destroyed by their own ambitions. Do not be deceived!!

D. James
1 year ago
Reply to  SheilaP

Sheila, This is not a distraction but an example of what America needs which is pride and hope in a better future.

SheilaP
1 year ago
Reply to  D. James

I thank you for your reply and I respect your opinion. Please let me share the following with you: Proverbs 16:18 “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.” May God bless you.

ConnieP
1 year ago
Reply to  SheilaP

A haughty spirit can be seen in the rich and powerful but it can also appear in the poor and lowly. This can sometime go unrecognized because of the low status, but it will be seen in the bitter resentment as the person of low station will seethe at the misfortune and injustice that has led him or her to their low position. It is the certainty that they should be elevated that comes from pride.

Larry Jones
1 year ago
Reply to  SheilaP

I see you are using bible verses as a way to rationalize the hope and glory of America. look at the media and the far left who are ravaging this country and taking the life away from America. America is waking up to see the left try to destroy what made this country great. no body remembers who was second place. where is your pride. do you agree that the looting and violence is justified. I think your a wolf in sheep clothes preaching the downfall of America. The space race is back on and America will be a strong country again. It suffered a 8 year setback during the Obama/Biden years. We got change alright for the worse. the great divider caused more race problems than before. Antifa and black lives matter are just fronts for socialist groups trying to destroy America.

37Shannon
1 year ago
Reply to  SheilaP

You never say what you think the “real agenda” is … IMHO the only people with an agenda are the democrats who, when they are not trying to oust President Trump, are doing everything they can to obstruct his efforts to lead our country.

Mary
1 year ago
Reply to  SheilaP

Sheila stop watching fake news. Never take our liberty, freedoms, aspirations for greatness away from the American spirit. We do not take these blessings for granted or the cost of so many innocent people as they fought for their individualism. We are more than conquerors thru Him who loves us. We are pioneers, inventors, dreamers, individuals, charitable, good, and diligent hard workers. We are Americans and happy.

Patty L
1 year ago
Reply to  Mary

Well said, Mary!!

D. James
1 year ago

Great article. The space launch is just what this country needed to boost our morale. President Trump is THE man for our country in these troubled times. High time for America to kick ass and move forward. Unless Trump is re-elected in November America is headed for Third World status.
GOD BLESS AMERICA AND OUR TOUGH GUY PRESIDENT !!!

David Midkiff
1 year ago

Very good article. We need to keep a President with good leadership like our President.

Paul W
1 year ago

On one hand, it’s great to be putting Americans into space without having to buy a ride from Russia. On the other, we launched two Americans into orbit and docked with a target 56 years ago. Other than the fact that it’s Americans launching Americans, I really can’t get too fired up about it. We should be concentrating on space defense at this time in history. It will unquestionably be the the new military domain and we had better make it OUR domain.

Larry Jones
1 year ago
Reply to  Paul W

it takes Americans to be able to launch to complete the space defense. what country would let us hitch a ride to do that without stealing all our secrets.

TEXANll
1 year ago
Reply to  Paul W

We have to stay the course, the left is willing to destroy the country to have whatever they believe is the future??? which would be less than ZERO… if we let them, as we all are aware. I can’t even have a civil conversation about progress anymore without being beaten down verbally with leftist ideology and fake news and garbage and their theology. With the left there is no room for progress unless it is into the realm of socialism. What’s good for you is even better for me, as long as I get what I want out of the deal. amazing that so many have been brainwashed over these last 20 years to believe that history and success as a country is no longer valid. Ok, let’s just say they win, the left takes over someday? we begin a slow hard process of transition to socialism across the board and it, ” THE NEW AMERICA” fails as we see happening now in China, and China will fail the people will ensure that that happens even if it takes a civil war over there. what then?… anyone gonna be around to say I told you so. We can’t take that chance, we never have stepped off the path that the forefathers set that brought us to this great wonderful experiment called America. I was thinking back about an episode of The Discovery Channel a couple of days ago and the narrator said these native peoples lived in this continent over 1000 years ago. I began to think wow, 1000 years ago.
then I counted, 1492, 1592, 1692, 1792, 1892, 1992, 2022… only 520 plus years since Columbus sailed from Spain.
Wow, America has done so many great things that have helped to make the World a better place. So now we just stop and hand over the keys to the KINGDOM to those who would destroy it ??? Not on my watch…!!! I don’t have any grandkids. My family tree dies with me. but the spirit of America and what it stands for will be carried on for 200 more years and those kids will look back and see that it was good, probably the only good that was ever created. we have set great examples across the globe as to what it takes to be free, to be a place where people want to live and survive and be free. we can’t let the nay sayers take all that away. I only have one vote, but add it to yours and the others that read this and we move mountains every day.
Another will come along one day that has the backbone to stand with us as Trump has now. and we will move forward against all odds. Never say never, stay the course. MAGA… see you all in November… GOD BLESS AMERICA.

Paul W
1 year ago
Reply to  TEXANll

Amen, TEXANII .

J Double U.
1 year ago
Reply to  TEXANll

Congratulations to our Education system. Great job. Yeah right. Needs to be turned on its head, K – college!

PaulE
1 year ago
Reply to  Paul W

Yes, both the Russians and the Chinese have already showcased their means to attack and destroy orbital assets. All with the obvious intent to send a very clear message to the United States, that they would strike our orbital satellites to either blind us or render most of our high tech weapons inoperable as part of a first strike. Most Americans simply don’t focus on our current vunerability in that critical area. Good to see someone else out there actually acknowledges the existence of that threat. Sad that so few don’t.

Paul W
1 year ago
Reply to  PaulE

Yes it is sad, PaulE. What’s even sadder is that we even have to think along those lines. It is, however…what it is.

PaulE
1 year ago
Reply to  Paul W

Since the day the Russians first launched Sputnik, it was inevitable that space would be militarized one way or another. Those in positions of power in the United States in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s understood that reality. Which is why there was such a concerted effort during that time to perfect both our own satellite capability (communications, surveillance of hostile countries), as well as move to develop a means to reach both earth orbit and eventually the moon via manned missions.

Somewhere along the way, our national leadership lost sight of the fact the world is still a very dangerous place and those that despise our country would continue to seek means to neutralize our advantage in space technology. Given some of the comments here, it is clear many of our generation have apparently bought into the notion that if we don’t do anything to defend our space assets, those opposed to us will just stop the development and deployment of their own means to cripple us. Wishful thinking or burying one’s head in the sand hoping the danger just goes away usually doesn’t end well. Thank God that President Trump sees the threat and has taken some initial steps to address it.

Paul W
1 year ago
Reply to  PaulE

Yes sir PaulE. I agree completely. Until (if ever) foreign international relations change drastically, our “space budget” needs to be spent on military defense. We don’t have the luxury to, in my opinion, waste taxpayer money on sending people 200 miles above the ground to sing “kumbaya” with the Russians on the ISS. The space station, by the way, for which the U.S. footed (by conservative estimates) 63% of the cost of constructing. The other 10 countries pitched in a whopping 37% combined. After the shuttle program ended, the “grateful” Russians then charged the U.S. $81,000,000 a pop to give a U.S. astronaut a lift. Wow…P.T. Putin saw the suckers coming. Time to drop the naivety and get real. Russia, China, NorKo, Iran and several others hate our guts.

Judith L
1 year ago
Reply to  Paul W

One thing I’ve learned these past 3 years is that the President is many, many steps ahead of where we the people think he is. It’s been proven over and over. I didn’t like him as a “feel good” person. However, what he has accomplished world-wide as President has left everyone else in the dust.

Paul W
1 year ago
Reply to  Judith L

Agreed Judith. While he doesn’t always articulate it in the most elegant manner, he get’s it done. I’ll take a doer over a silver tongued orator any and every day!

BajaRon
1 year ago

Trump is a DOER. Yes, he talks a lot. And if I had my druthers, I’d ask him to cool his jets sometimes But when you consider what he has accomplished, against all the organized and well funded resistance, it is AMAZING! He’s been working very hard, and he’s almost always right. He has tackled things that have scared previous politicians into doing nothing at all. Trump is not just lip service. He is all about getting it done!

MAGA is working, though you’d never know it from the News Media.

They couldn’t beat him at the ballot box in 2016. They couldn’t beat him with Russia-gate. They couldn’t beat him with Quid-Quo-Pro. They couldn’t beat him with ‘Fake News’. And now they know Trump will beat them again in 2020. So, they have decided to destroy America with paid, professional rioters. The left is saying that ‘If we can’t have this nation, then no-body can have it.’

If we lay down for this. We deserve to be treated as the door mats we are.

Elton Yancey
1 year ago
Reply to  BajaRon

I only hope that there are enough strong Americans to keep the progress going strong.

T Taylor
1 year ago
Reply to  BajaRon

In my opinion NASA is a waste of money. We need to turn our attention to fixing our country.

MariaRose
1 year ago
Reply to  T Taylor

Dear T. Taylor–I guess you are not into SYFY adventures into space, to each his own, but you are missing the point here, the technology used in developing programs under NASA is helping to create better living environments. The people you need to complain to are the politicians (like Nancy Pelosi) who are using COVID-19 and rioting as a means to make themselves rich while blaming everything on Trump. I guess you like seeing her sitting there eating specialty ice cream while saying that it is an opportunity. Despite your negativity in space , we are going to invest into space exploration. And NASA is merely the umbrella, which PRIVATE ENTERPRISE is developing the need technology.

T Taylor
1 year ago
Reply to  MariaRose

What good is the development of technology when our country is going to hell in a hand basket?

T Taylor
1 year ago
Reply to  MariaRose

The only space I am interested in exploring for the purpose of seeing real change is the heart.

T Taylor
1 year ago
Reply to  MariaRose

The only thing that brings real change from the heart is Jesus Christ. I refuse to put my faith in science and technology; which has woefully let us all down.

T Taylor
1 year ago
Reply to  MariaRose

In light of all that is going on I ask what “better living environment?” Better for our nation to look within, faith that seeks God, then continue to searching for answers in space.

T Taylor
1 year ago
Reply to  MariaRose

What is your reply to MariaRose?

Steven G Doyle
1 year ago
Reply to  MariaRose

I’m afraid Mr. Taylor is correct. If the ISS teaches anything, It is that humans can NOT live indefinitely in that environment without health consequences. Neither government nor private industry will be able to realize positive return on human space exploration.

Lauren MacArthur
1 year ago
Reply to  T Taylor

Exploration has been always, and as long as we exist will be the path to improvement of the human condition. Once we stop exploring, we will die out……THAT is why it is important. Thank goodness, Trump has fulfilled another pledge.

Daniel Oehlert
1 year ago
Reply to  BajaRon

Well said, Trump 2020!

stephen russell
1 year ago

If we can get man 2 the Moon, build first nuclear sub, develop polio vaccine, why NOT a vaccine to cure Cancer & end Chemo?, Lupus, shingles etc
Why not Hyperloop nationwide or lunar base?
YES We can
Need manned space shots from CA FL TX HI VA USVI.
Jobs $$$$$
& redo Our Economy anew.

Bobby D
1 year ago

Two words. ” Money Greed “

Trg
1 year ago

Too much money in chemo and medications. Even if a discovery was made we wouldn’t see it. Doctors who recommended natural cures are ruined. Big pharma doesn’t want cures.

Trap
1 year ago

Imo building anything in California Hawaii Virginia would be a mistake again just my opinion

PaulE
1 year ago

It only took 11 years to correct the damage that the Obama / Biden years did to our manned space program. He discontinued the space shuttle program, without a viable American alternative ready to go and turned NASA into a Muslim out-reach organization. That latter decision forcing many of the most technically qualified people to leave NASA to either take early retirement or find employment in the private sector, if they were going to continue in a position where their skills were both needed and appreciated. Fortunately, many of those engineers and scientists found welcoming new employment at places like Space X and Blue Origin. The private sector often fills a needed gap every time the government makes bad decisions and the Obama / Biden years was chock full of bad and corrupt decisions in nearly every thing they touched. So yes, we should all cheer that we have finally restored a means of manned space flight to the ISS, that we had before the disastrous Obama / Biden years. Now the question becomes, what are YOU going to do between now and the election to ensure this country doesn’t end up with Senile Joe in the WH surrounded by scores of Obama people actually running the country on a day to day basis?

Elton Yancey
1 year ago
Reply to  PaulE

Could not agree more.

MICHAEL FAILLA
1 year ago
Reply to  PaulE

Could not have said it any better. We are back, we should always put the US number 1. It is so sad that we wasted the obama years, Nothing but bad, craven decisions and sorry excuses. We will be paying a painful price for that for a very long time. He could have been a healer, he could have been an asset instead he chose a different direction and it was the wrong direction. His fecklessness is manifesting itself on the streets of our nation as we see.

Frank S.
1 year ago

Finally, we get a piece of great news in the middle of all the strife and chaos America is enduring. As a student of history, I know that when a country stops pursuing lofty goals or ideas, they are on their way down. Though a child in the 1960s I still well remember the pride we Americans took in our space program, particularly the laser-focused effort to put men on the moon. I hope this is only the beginning of still greater things to come. Though not without it’s flaws, we still live in the greatest country on this earth. Let’s never forget that!

Barb
1 year ago
Reply to  Frank S.

GOD BLESS AMERICA !!!!!!!!!!! Amen and Amen.

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