In case you have not looked at virtually any mainstream news outlet on the internet or television this week, today is the 50th anniversary of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin rolling up to the moon, walking on it, planting a flag, and saying some things your teachers might have made you memorize in third grade. While this is fascinating and a big milestone for space exploration at whatnot, I find it equally fascinating that so many conspiracy theories have accompanied this historical event.
The conspiracy theory that the U.S. did not land moon and, in fact, it was all staged by NASA and filmed by director Stanley Kubrick, is one of my favorite conspiracy theories, particularly the tertiary theory that Kubrick was trying to clue in his fans to The Truth via strategically placed visual cues in his 1980 horror classic The Shining. (For more on this conspiracy theory, I highly recommend the 2012 documentary Room 237, which highlights various wild fan interpretations of that film.)
I might have a conspiracy theory about the conspiracy theory, though. Maybe the idea of a couple of white men in the ‘60s being selected to execute a super rarefied—the most rarefied—task and becoming lifelong national heroes is simply too mundane and obvious for some to believe? I don’t know! But as these scientists from the American Museum of Natural History point out, it’s about time to send an all-woman crew to walk on the moon. “It’s actually kind of symbolic that Neil Armstrong chose to use the words ‘man’ and ‘mankind,’” Ruth Angus, assistant curator and astrophysics professor at the museum, told Billboard. “Even though at the time they were meant to be inclusive terms, today lots of people interpret those terms as being exclusive. Just to make it 100 percent clear, space exploration is for everyone. It would be really nice if we sent a woman of color to the moon next.” This is, of course, if we can somehow get past the genius idea of the Space Force.
Do enjoy your Saturday evening, and may one day someone shoot me to the moon, but not in the space travel way. Go forth and chat your shit in the comments below!