CAPE CANAVERAL, Fl.- Although President Obama insists that trying to land on an asteroid would be much more interesting, NASA is pushing ahead with its plans to revisit an old friend: the moon.
Like a tipsy uncle at a family gathering, NASA is convinced that the voyage would raise public awareness about the moon and even engage young students in the subjects of math and science.
International test results released in December 2010 showed that U.S. 15-year-olds lagged way behind their peers in other countries. The pesky Chinese finished first in math, science, and reading while the U.S. finished as far behind as 31st (math).
Harfold State College instructor of astrology and astronomy Peterson Davids weighed in: "When the Soviets' Luna 2 landed on the moon in 1959, we figured we'd better teach more in schools than arithmetic.
"It's the reason why we torture our young people with algebra and geometry today. Instead of making our kids smarter, though, it seems to have only made it more difficult for parents to do their kids' homework."
The Obama Administration has long believed that landing on asteroids should be the focus of NASA efforts. Davids knows why.
"Asteroids must be more important as they all warrant a capital letter. Our moon, though, is relegated to generic moon status. Why fly to the moon when you could land on Abante, Spitzweg, or Tortali?
"Just sounds cooler, doesn't it?"