Men land on moon — and return

Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin train for their visit to the moon prior to the launch.Some Farmington residents weren't so sure God wanted humans to visit the moon and some thought it unlikely that Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin would make it safely back from their journey to the lunar surface.

This unattributed front page editorial from the July 17, 1969 issue of the Farmington News is reprinted in its entirety for the enjoyment and enlightenment of our readers. – Editor

Several years ago when daylight savings time was instituted in the area, there were many people who were critical of the plan. They argued that moving the clock forward or backward an hour was tampering with God's elaborate system of time.

Needless to say, daylight savings time has been beneficial to most, with the possible exception of cows, by allowing for longer summer and shorter winter days. With the progress being made by the three astronauts who are on their way to the moon, a similar argument is now being voiced.

In random questioning of several people who came into the Farmington News office during the week, a surprisingly large percentage of respondents expressed doubt that the lunar mission would succeed, or noted other criticisms.

First, there were those who felt that such an adventure is in direct conflict with the laws of God. As Sherman Province of Leadwood commented, "I kind of hate to express myself because I think the moon was put there by God. They once tried to build a tower to heaven and failed. If they land on the moon they'll never come back."

Milburn Graham also noted, "I'm afraid they won't make it. I don't believe any human being was meant to go up there. The Bible says that no many should tamper with His work. If there were supposed to have been men on the moon, the Lord would have made a way for him."

There were also those critical of the moon shot for practical reasons. Mrs. Betty Medley observed, "We should do a lot of things on earth before we go up there."

Ray Giessing added, "There's no doubt that it (the moon flight) has its merits. but the way conditions are now, the money could be better spent otherwise."

It seems that among the one million spectators of the Apollo 11 blast-off at Cape Kennedy yesterday were some poor people in a mule-drawn wagon, vocalizing a similar sentiment to that of Mrs. Medley and Mr. Giessing.

Then there were those who expressed approval of the flight, as reflected by Carl Rasnic's statement, "I think it's the greatest thing since sliced bread. I wish I were going."

However, despite one's personal opinions concerning the journey, it must be regarded as a great feat comparable to Christopher Columbus' voyage to the New World in 1492. As a matter of fact, the command Apollo ship has been given the radio call name of "Columbiad," after the national symbol, a statue of which stands atop the national capitol building in Washington, D.C. The lunar module has been christened "Eagle."

Fortunately, the exploits of Aldrin, Armstrong and Collins will be recognized by their contemporaries as being of great value, while the actual merits of Columbus' discovery were not realized until much later.

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