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Author Topic: RIP John Glenn  (Read 1375 times)

pwhodges

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RIP John Glenn
« on: 08 Dec 2016, 14:35 »

The first American to orbit the earth in space, later a senator, has died, age 95.

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/john-glenn-first-american-to-orbit-the-earth-dead-at-95/
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Neko_Ali

Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #1 on: 08 Dec 2016, 14:43 »

#fuck2016

Stop taking all our heroes away.
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pwhodges

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Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #2 on: 08 Dec 2016, 15:32 »

Eh, 95's doing pretty well, even for now; but yes, sure...
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"As long as we're all living, and as long as we're all having fun, that should do it, right?"  (from: The Eccentric Family )

LeeC

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Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #3 on: 08 Dec 2016, 15:32 »

My friend got a picture with him during her graduation from.. well grad school.
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BenRG

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Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #4 on: 08 Dec 2016, 23:43 »

There was a time when 'Astronaut' and 'John Glenn' were synonymous but the life of a publicity symbol is not an easy one and made it politically impossible that he would ever be allowed to go into space again.

In some ways, it is his political career that will more define the legacy of the man - He was chief author of the 1978 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act. On the negatives side, was involved (or even implicated) in many of the defining American political debates of the late 20th Century, especially improper corporate influence on Congress and the Senate as well as the looming fear of Chinese financial interests influencing politicians as highly-placed as even the President.

Like all real people, John Glenn was imperfect and could make mistakes but, at this time, it is worth focussing on the good that he did try to do in his life.
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Akima

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Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #5 on: 09 Dec 2016, 14:37 »

I cannot forget that John Glenn threw the weight of his fame and heroic status decisively against the participation of women in the USA's space programme, even to the point of making a condescending sexist joke in his testimony before the House Space Committee. Of course he was not alone in his sexism, which was even more ubiquitous then than today, but it is the responsibility of our heroes to move us forward, not hold us back, so he was no hero to me.

"I think it gets back to the way our social order is organized really. It is just a fact. Men go off and fight the wars and fly the planes and come back and help design and build and test them. The fact that women are not in this field is a fact of our social order." And never mind the fact that women had demonstrated that they could quite competently build and fly aircraft throughout the Second World War.

"If we can find any women demonstrating better ability than the men going into this program, we will welcome them with open arms." <the committee room erupts with laughter> "For the purposes of my going home this afternoon, I hope that will be stricken from the record." Ha bloody ha...


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pwhodges

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Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #6 on: 09 Dec 2016, 14:55 »

"If we can find any women demonstrating better ability than the men going into this program, we will welcome them with open arms."

And how will you find them if you keep the doors locked against them?  That question was not often asked back then, and is not asked every time it should be even now.

Sad; I didn't know about that aspect.
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Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #7 on: 09 Dec 2016, 16:11 »

For me, it is the business of heroes to swim against the current of injustice and oppression in their time, rather than use their position to reinforce it.
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Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #8 on: 12 Dec 2016, 03:14 »

and so does the perfect become the enemy of the good
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Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #9 on: 15 Dec 2016, 09:17 »

1 of my earliest memories was watching Apollo 11 lift off from the Cape. I was almost 4.
I thought things would be different by the time I got to be this old.
And I guess they are.
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Akima

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Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #10 on: 21 Dec 2016, 17:05 »

Well, he got an obituary in The Economist.
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Re: RIP John Glenn
« Reply #11 on: 28 Dec 2016, 07:58 »

"If we can find any women demonstrating better ability than the men going into this program, we will welcome them with open arms."

And how will you find them if you keep the doors locked against them?  That question was not often asked back then, and is not asked every time it should be even now.

Sad; I didn't know about that aspect.

Charles Yeager was quite vocal about Jackie Cochrane's achievements - IIRC, in his autobiography, he did mention that it didn't hurt Cochrane to have a billionaire husband and both of them being good friends with Mr. Right Stuff, as well as a host of the top Air Force Brass of the time (and he did make fun of her complaining of a fighter's cockpit stinking of men's sweat & bathing it in perfume), but he was adamant that he hadn't "dragged her around the course", as other pilots insinuated, and that her records were self-accomplished without a doubt.

Given that Yeager is only two years younger than Glenn, and not really known as a bleeding-heart liberal feminist (IIRC, the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School was investigated by a Congressional Comitee  due to an NAACP-complaint during Yeager's stint as Commander), the latter's attitude cannot even be explained as "sign of the times".
« Last Edit: 28 Dec 2016, 08:03 by Case »
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