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The Best Among Us, Remembering Space Shuttle Columbia
NASA Web Site ^ | 2/1/04 | NASA

Posted on 11/01/2004 1:01:30 PM PST by Paul Ross

For those who have the time to quietly reflect, as we choose for our nation our leadership, I humbly submit that there is little better "signal" of character than this solemn memorial to fallen heroes...



TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; Philosophy; Unclassified
KEYWORDS: astronauts; columbia; memorial; nasa; shuttle; space; sts107; tribute
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1 posted on 11/01/2004 1:01:37 PM PST by Paul Ross
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To: Paul Ross

They are not heroes, they are victims.


2 posted on 11/01/2004 1:06:59 PM PST by Old Professer (About the hearty and haughty the humble harbor a horrid hatred that hobbles the heavy heart.)
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To: Paul Ross

with all due respect to those aboard columbia, and those aboard challenger, too, there's not one among them who would have gotten aboard if they had the slightest inkling that the shuttle was as unreliable and dangerous as it not only was but was known to be.

the lesson from those lamentable disasters is that congress should not micromanage the design of things like spacecraft, and certainly the design and choice of contractors ought not be pork-barrel items.


3 posted on 11/01/2004 1:07:19 PM PST by dep (No, we don't have editors. We ARE editors.)
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To: Paul Ross

4 posted on 11/01/2004 1:10:11 PM PST by Prime Choice (Laura Bush is like everyone's sweetheart. Teresa Heinz-Kerry is like everyone's mother-in-law.)
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To: Old Professer

It's not heroic to go into space for the improvement of humanity?


5 posted on 11/01/2004 1:10:15 PM PST by Pyro7480 (Sub tuum praesidium confugimus, sancta Dei Genitrix.... sed a periculis cunctis libera nos semper...)
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To: Old Professer
They are not heroes, they are victims.

So, by your logic, the firefighters who died in the Twin Towers on 9/11 are just "victims" and not heroes either, hm?

Either come out and say it or expose yourself as a hypocrite.

6 posted on 11/01/2004 1:11:15 PM PST by Prime Choice (Laura Bush is like everyone's sweetheart. Teresa Heinz-Kerry is like everyone's mother-in-law.)
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To: dep
with all due respect to those aboard columbia, and those aboard challenger, too, there's not one among them who would have gotten aboard if they had the slightest inkling that the shuttle was as unreliable and dangerous as it not only was but was known to be.

Then by your logic, the firefighters who died in the Twin Towers on 9/11 are not heroes either. So come out and say as much or admit your own hypocrisy.

7 posted on 11/01/2004 1:12:24 PM PST by Prime Choice (Laura Bush is like everyone's sweetheart. Teresa Heinz-Kerry is like everyone's mother-in-law.)
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To: Old Professer
he·ro ( P ) Pronunciation Key (hîr) n. pl. he·roes

1. In mythology and legend, a man, often of divine ancestry, who is endowed with great courage and strength, celebrated for his bold exploits, and favored by the gods.
2. A person noted for feats of courage or nobility of purpose, especially one who has risked or sacrificed his or her life: soldiers and nurses who were heroes in an unpopular war.
3. A person noted for special achievement in a particular field: the heroes of medicine. See Synonyms at celebrity.

vic·tim ( P ) Pronunciation Key (vktm) n.

1. One who is harmed or killed by another: a victim of a mugging.
2. A living creature slain and offered as a sacrifice during a religious rite.
3. One who is harmed by or made to suffer from an act, circumstance, agency, or condition: victims of war.
4. A person who suffers injury, loss, or death as a result of a voluntary undertaking: You are a victim of your own scheming.
5. A person who is tricked, swindled, or taken advantage of: the victim of a cruel hoax.

They fit the definition of the former far better than the latter.

8 posted on 11/01/2004 1:13:09 PM PST by pgyanke (What part of CHRISTian do liberals not understand?)
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To: Old Professer

you are entirely right. the difference between a hero and a victim is knowing ahead of time the nature and depth of the danger. the astronauts were lied to.


9 posted on 11/01/2004 1:13:20 PM PST by dep (No, we don't have editors. We ARE editors.)
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To: dep

Dep,

I disagree. If you know ANYTHING about space travel you know that every single one of them knew the risks. When you are riding a controlled explosion into space, not matter how "safe" we make it look, it still stares death in the face.


10 posted on 11/01/2004 1:14:02 PM PST by BoBToMatoE
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To: dep

Every astronaut boards the craft with the knowledge that their trip could be one way. You are incorrect.


11 posted on 11/01/2004 1:14:21 PM PST by pgyanke (What part of CHRISTian do liberals not understand?)
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To: Old Professer
They are not heroes, they are victims.

Victims or not, the comment you made sucks!

12 posted on 11/01/2004 1:17:45 PM PST by Cold Heat (http://ice.he.net/~freepnet/kerry/staticpages/index.php?page=20040531140357545)
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To: dep

Re: Your first paragraph - I know a few astronauts and their families, and you're completely full of sh*t. They know it's a dangerous line of work, and recruitment has continued just fine since both Challenger and Columbia, so obviously these tragedies are NOT scaring people off.

Re: Your second paragraph - I happen to agree.


13 posted on 11/01/2004 1:18:58 PM PST by Frank_Discussion (May the wings of Liberty never lose a feather!)
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To: Paul Ross

Thank you for your thoughtful, reverential post.


14 posted on 11/01/2004 1:19:02 PM PST by Socratic (Kerry/Edwards - Forging a New Reality)
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To: Prime Choice
Either come out and say it or expose yourself as a hypocrite.

I wouldn't do either one. That's a dumb choice, you are "setting him up. Here's your choice: What's more important? Proven material for the insulating foam? or a "more environmentally friendly" alternative which caused the death of 7 astronauts?

I agree they were victims. Of ignorance over experience. Political correctness sometimes kills. Someone usually makes that choice.

15 posted on 11/01/2004 1:20:39 PM PST by Publius6961 (The most abundant things in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity.)
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To: BoBToMatoE
well, no, actually, you are entirely wrong. i've written extensively on the subject -- this won the aviation and space writers association award and a pulitzer nomination in 1988 -- and have interviewed numerous astronauts both post-challenger and post-columbia, and to a person they are enraged at nasa for understating the depth of the known hazards. the problem with the tps, for instance, was known from the first drop test of enterprise and from the first ferry flight of columbia. i wrote about that here. but thanks for playing.
16 posted on 11/01/2004 1:23:11 PM PST by dep (No, we don't have editors. We ARE editors.)
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To: Cold Heat

Why? The truth has no emotional compass.


17 posted on 11/01/2004 1:27:13 PM PST by Old Professer (About the hearty and haughty the humble harbor a horrid hatred that hobbles the heavy heart.)
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To: Paul Ross
Indeed. HEROES. Anyone who thinks not should be ashamed.

And these heroes would be proud of the new direction that NASA has taken under Bush, I can safely say that. Anyone who loves NASA and exploration knows that. To return to the moon, then Mars, and beyond. THAT is why they risked their lives.

Thanks for posting this. We cant remember these folks enough. They are the very best and they were not afraid to take the risks that benefit all humanity.

"The cause of exploration and discovery is not an option we choose, It is a desire written in the human heart." -President Bush

18 posted on 11/01/2004 1:28:14 PM PST by Names Ash Housewares
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To: Old Professer

I don't see anything antithetical between being heroes and being victims. They are heroes, and if victims also, so be it. But I think they are bigger heroes than anything else.


19 posted on 11/01/2004 1:31:06 PM PST by KellyAdmirer
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To: pgyanke
The semantic jungle is fraught with undergrowth, the childish attachment to the dead serves the living poorly.

Twice, the American public was lulled into a sense of the routine concerning "space travel" and both times a simple material failure proved the seriousness of the undertaking; shall we celebrate the next crew for their bravery or for their sheer follishness?

20 posted on 11/01/2004 1:33:29 PM PST by Old Professer (About the hearty and haughty the humble harbor a horrid hatred that hobbles the heavy heart.)
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To: pgyanke
Agreed, heroes all, who ride the barely-contained explosions to orbit...and God-willing, back again. The only fitting tribute to the heroes of STS-107, Space Shuttle Columbia, is to resume manned space flight. And not just Shuttle operations... but to fulfill the larger mission of exploration and development.


21 posted on 11/01/2004 1:35:39 PM PST by Paul Ross (Deploy Real Missile Defense NOW. Iran will have nukes in 4 months.)
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To: Old Professer
Ain't this a heck of a time to make a simple spelling mistake?

I am a dedicated cynic, by that, I mean that I believe in no greater purpose than the end of an uneventful day.

Proud demonstration begets remonstration, and pride is a curse upon us all.

22 posted on 11/01/2004 1:37:12 PM PST by Old Professer (About the hearty and haughty the humble harbor a horrid hatred that hobbles the heavy heart.)
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To: Paul Ross
What, exactly, is the larger mission?

When I used to farm, I always dropped a few extra kernals in the hill, is that it?

23 posted on 11/01/2004 1:38:37 PM PST by Old Professer (About the hearty and haughty the humble harbor a horrid hatred that hobbles the heavy heart.)
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To: Old Professer
Would you have ever launched the first Mercury and Gemini missions? Or sent men to the Moon? Would you have given it all up as an impractically bad idea simply because of bad weather in Florida?


24 posted on 11/01/2004 1:38:55 PM PST by Paul Ross (Deploy Real Missile Defense NOW. Iran will have nukes in 4 months.)
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To: Publius6961
What's more important? Proven material for the insulating foam? or a "more environmentally friendly" alternative which caused the death of 7 astronauts?

NASA operates at the whim of Congress. You got a beef over that issue? Take it up with the enviro-whackos and the jackwits they own in Congress, pal.

25 posted on 11/01/2004 1:39:10 PM PST by Prime Choice (Laura Bush is like everyone's sweetheart. Teresa Heinz-Kerry is like everyone's mother-in-law.)
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To: Paul Ross

I would have "nuked" Moscow and had it done with.


26 posted on 11/01/2004 1:39:56 PM PST by Old Professer (About the hearty and haughty the humble harbor a horrid hatred that hobbles the heavy heart.)
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To: Names Ash Housewares
Yes. HEROES.

And the new direction......lifts our spirit..

27 posted on 11/01/2004 1:49:33 PM PST by Paul Ross (Deploy Real Missile Defense NOW. Iran will have nukes in 4 months.)
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To: KellyAdmirer
They were all Americans and it was a tragedy that we all lived through under the leadership of President George W. Bush!

Nothing is ever mentioned of the emotional trauma that all Americans have gone through over the last four years, but some seem to think the President wasn't at the helm holding us all together.

I pray for Four More Years of Leadership from George W. Bush comes tomorrow evening.
28 posted on 11/01/2004 1:50:46 PM PST by not2worry (What goes around comes around!)
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To: Old Professer
The semantic jungle is fraught with undergrowth, the childish attachment to the dead serves the living poorly.

Gibberish IS the undergrowth in your semantic jungle. The poorly worded rant meant to obfuscate rather than illuminate serves conversation and debate poorly. The reverence afforded those who serve honorably and with sacrifice--especially in the most dangerous fields of endeavor--is a worthy human undertaking.

29 posted on 11/01/2004 1:51:27 PM PST by pgyanke (Balph Eubank? Is that you?)
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To: Old Professer
Twice, the American public was lulled into a sense of the routine concerning "space travel" and both times a simple material failure proved the seriousness of the undertaking; shall we celebrate the next crew for their bravery or for their sheer follishness?

We're not talking about the American public. We're talking about the heroes who knew the risks and dared the challenge. Sit at home and Freep... leave the real risk taking to the bold.

30 posted on 11/01/2004 1:54:03 PM PST by pgyanke (The Big Bang Theory=God spoke and BANG! it happened...)
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To: pgyanke

So, we've gone beyond respect to reverence, what's next, canonization?


31 posted on 11/01/2004 1:54:05 PM PST by Old Professer (About the hearty and haughty the humble harbor a horrid hatred that hobbles the heavy heart.)
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To: Old Professer

Wow... there's a real positive thought to add to the discussion. I'm pretty sure this was supposed to be a motivational/inspirational thread. If it's not your cup of tea, just skip it next time.


32 posted on 11/01/2004 1:59:23 PM PST by rampage8
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To: Old Professer

Reverence may be a stronger word than respect... but they are still appropriate synonyms. Your "canonization" is a poor straw man.

Old Professor? You may want to hit a few more books...


33 posted on 11/01/2004 1:59:38 PM PST by pgyanke (The Big Bang Theory=God spoke and BANG! it happened...)
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To: rampage8
Look, I'm not here to make friends or enemies; the guys in charge screwed up both times we lost space shuttles, the victims paid the price. The guys in charge are planning to try again in mid May.

Sure, it's tragic, and they knew the risk, but the rewards weren't expected to be discovery but were seen as celebrity and we have way too much of that as motive now for foolhardy behavior.

So, if it happens again, do we reuse the same hankies or do we ask the really important questions?

34 posted on 11/01/2004 2:12:43 PM PST by Old Professer (About the hearty and haughty the humble harbor a horrid hatred that hobbles the heavy heart.)
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To: Paul Ross

Another memorial (includes audio from George W.):

http://www.interviewwithgod.com/columbia/


35 posted on 11/01/2004 2:17:28 PM PST by kidkosmic1 (www.InterviewwithGod.com)
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To: dep; Old_Professor; All

With all due respect, I work at Kennedy Space Center. I had worked with two of those astronauts directly. They know there is risk and that things can go wrong that we don't know about and yet they get on that extremely complex vehicle to push back the boundaries of our knowledge. They take the risk willingly so I disagree with both of you. They are heros and they go knowing there is a risk.

Ravenstar


36 posted on 11/01/2004 2:42:29 PM PST by Ravenstar (Reinstitute the Constitution as the Ultimate Law of the Land)
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To: kidkosmic1; snopercod; Samwise

Ping.


37 posted on 11/01/2004 3:22:22 PM PST by Paul Ross (Deploy Real Missile Defense NOW. Iran will have nukes in 4 months.)
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To: dep
...there's not one among them who would have gotten aboard if they had the slightest inkling that the shuttle was as unreliable and dangerous as it not only was but was known to be.

You don't know much about human nature, do you.

38 posted on 11/01/2004 4:26:07 PM PST by snopercod (Inflation, it's how wars are paid for.)
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To: Paul Ross

Thanks for the great picture of my old office (I was up on the 4th floor of the LCC).


39 posted on 11/01/2004 4:29:28 PM PST by snopercod (Inflation, it's how wars are paid for.)
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To: XBob; bonesmccoy; computermechanic; wirestripper; tubebender; RightWhale

Nice tribute.


40 posted on 11/01/2004 4:33:36 PM PST by snopercod (Inflation, it's how wars are paid for.)
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To: Paul Ross

Great link. They are heroes!


41 posted on 11/01/2004 5:31:40 PM PST by Samwise (W4)
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To: Old Professer
They are not heroes, they are victims.

Wrong.

Many think that the Space Shuttle was some routine ride into space. It never was. Every launch and flight was a MAJOR risk where uncountable things could go wrong. It was never routine. What they did was extremely risky, they were truly hero's first, and victims second.

42 posted on 11/01/2004 5:35:46 PM PST by Joe Hadenuf (I failed anger management class, they decided to give me a passing grade anyway)
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To: Old Professer
They are not heroes, they are victims.

If there are heroes anymore, these are.

43 posted on 11/01/2004 5:40:22 PM PST by RightWhale (Destroy the dark; restore the light)
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To: dep
there's not one among them who would have gotten aboard

Yes, they did now and they went anyway. There are a million more who would do the same thing. Ten million.

44 posted on 11/01/2004 5:41:46 PM PST by RightWhale (Destroy the dark; restore the light)
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To: Prime Choice

thanks you for that post....as i was reading the posts, my first thought was "and slipped the surly bonds of earth, to touch the face of God." Contrary to what an earlier post said about them not being heroes but victims, all of these wonderful people ARE heroes - they have visited the new frontier looking for more than we have here on Earth. May God bless all of these true American Heroes. They truly did touch the face of God.


45 posted on 11/01/2004 5:44:37 PM PST by BamaDi
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To: dep
with all due respect to those aboard columbia, and those aboard challenger, too, there's not one among them who would have gotten aboard if they had the slightest inkling that the shuttle was as unreliable and dangerous as it not only was but was known to be.

This was not a mass produced flying Honda car where millions were made. A proven product so to speak.

Every launch, every flight was a big time risk to anyone on board. Shuttle flights were never routine no matter what the media may say. They all knew this going in.

Many of them don't go into prayer service before launch for nothing. They were hero's.

46 posted on 11/01/2004 5:47:13 PM PST by Joe Hadenuf (I failed anger management class, they decided to give me a passing grade anyway)
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To: RadioAstronomer; kattracks; Victoria Delsoul; buffyt

Ping.


47 posted on 11/02/2004 5:54:49 AM PST by Paul Ross (Deploy Real Missile Defense NOW. Iran will have nukes in 4 months.)
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To: Ravenstar
With all due respect, I work at Kennedy Space Center.

I worked at SAEF-II and the VPF. :-)

48 posted on 11/02/2004 6:13:11 AM PST by RadioAstronomer
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To: dep
there's not one among them who would have gotten aboard if they had the slightest inkling that the shuttle was as unreliable and dangerous as it not only was but was known to be.

Codswallop! I would have been first in line!

49 posted on 11/02/2004 6:14:29 AM PST by RadioAstronomer
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To: Old Professer
they are victims.

No. They were pioneers venturing into a "new land". Were the people who died along the western wagon routes victims as well?

Should we still be living in caves?

50 posted on 11/02/2004 6:19:14 AM PST by RadioAstronomer
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