Today is the 50th anniversary of the realization of President Kennedy’s dream of landing on the moon. It is all too easy to overlook the vision and courage it took to achieve this remarkable accomplishment, both on the President and the brave astronauts. Tragically, the President did not live to see this “giant step for mankind.”
In the 1960s, reputable scientists believed that the moon was covered by a thick layer of dust that would engulf and swallow up anything that landed on the surface. Despite this, the President set a goal to land on the moon by the end of the decade.
Kennedy quoted William Bradford, speaking of the Plymouth Bay Colony’s founding in 1630—”All great and honorable actions are accompanied with great difficulties, and both must be enterprised and overcome with answerable courage.”
The astronauts could not be sure they would even survive the landing. Once there, they had no guarantee that the lunar module would even start; thus, they also risked death by being stranded.
John Wayne once said that real courage is when you are scared to death and still saddle up and ride in.
America has always found heroes like Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins.
They represent the very best of what we battle to save today, our nation as founded, the last best hope of man on earth.