Fourth grader Iris uber Alles has been ranting continuously about the moon landing being faked ever since "I had an ephiphany, Momdude: the moon landing was faked!"
Iris idolizes those noted skeptics, the Mythbusters, two wisecracking San Franciso stuntmen who attempt to systematically disprove urban myths, and last night we all watched the episode where the Mythbusters take on conspiracy theorists who claim that the moon landing was a hoax. Iris watched very attentively, screaming at little sister Lola when Lola talked loudly, but in the end was unconvinced. "All they proved was that they can use film equipment to duplicate the effects of the moon landing! So all they proved was that the moon landing could have been faked on film equipment!"
And as for the kind offer of an Australian blog reader to send us a cup from the remote communications station which handled the signals sent from the moon, an ungrateful child snarked, "I want a cup that says, 'The Moon Landing Was Faked!'" (I, however, would enjoy a commemorative Australian moon landing cup).
I even raised a part of my own history rarely spoken of these days, my first marriage, and informed Iris that my first father-in-law spent his life working at NASA. His life's achievement was creating the lunar rover used on the moon missions. Iris shrugged this off easily. The lunar rover he made could have been used in the film studios used for the hoax, she seemed to feel.
"Why do you believe in the moon landing?" Iris asked me. I told her that I remembered it. I was only a very small child at the time, and I have no memory of seeing the actual moon landing, but I do remember everyone hovering by the television all day long and how somber and important that day was.
Iris jeered. "You believe it because you saw it on TV! You're always telling me to doubt what I see on TV! You think the TV is an authority figure!"
whatever you do, don't let her watch that 70's movie with Sam Waterston & OJ Simpson....
funny coming from someone who uses 30 rock as a source for info!
Hey, at least you are raising a skeptical child who can think critically for herself. When I meet with my automaton-esque 20 year old business students, I wish for a bit of Iris Uber Alles.
If the language weren't inappropriate, I'd suggest that episode of B.S. with Pen and Teller about conspiracy theories.
If Iris hasn't seen the HowStuffWorks' dissection of moon landing hoax evidence she might find it interesting (though, ultimately, it doesn't support her theory, so she might not).
I challenge Iris to answer the following questions and to post her response here. I am sure it will make for amusing reading...
* Which aspect of the necessary technology (e.g. rockets, life support, communication, navigation etc) did not exist in the 1960's?
* Thousands of people watched the rocket launches from Cape Canaveral during the program. Do you doubt the rockets where launched? If not, where were those rockets going?
* At what point did the fakery begin and end? Were the Gemini and mercury launches also faked? How about the shuttle program.
* How do you explain the recent photographs of the hardware that remains on the moon? Are they faked too?
* Name one credible primary source participated in the hoax.
* Given the tremendous challenge of launching rockets, faking the photos, keeping witnesses silent, and keeping everything under wraps. Wouldn't it just be simpler to send a few people to the moon instead?
* If NASA was so successful in faking this program, why did they stop at the moon? Wouldn't we now also have fake missions to Mars and Venus by now.
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