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Interplanet Jerrie
SNFI 2011
[The 1.0 Release
Sophomore Scholars
Interplanet Jerrie AFF
[The 1.0 Release, Supplement(s) to Come]
Jerrie Cobb Should Go to Space Now .......................................................................................................... 2
Jerrie Cobb - Willing to Go ............................................................................................................................ 3
Jerrie Cobb’s Story Exemplifies Sexism in NASA ....................................................................................... 4
Jerrie Cobb’s Story Exemplifies Sexism in NASA ....................................................................................... 5
Jerrie Cobb – Coverup ................................................................................................................................... 6
Jerrie Cobb – Congress Angle ...................................................................................................................... 7
NASA - Rhetoric of Men Leading Women ..................................................................................................... 8
NASA re-enforces gender dichotomies and images.................................................................................... 9
NASA’s sexism degrades women ............................................................................................................... 10
Historical Male domination of Space .......................................................................................................... 11
NASA Excludes Female Astronauts............................................................................................................ 12
NASA excludes post-menopausal women ................................................................................................. 13
Pressure to perform better than men.......................................................................................................... 14
NASA Discriminates Despite Evidence of Competence ............................................................................ 15
NASA Discriminates Despite Evidence of Competence ............................................................................ 16
NASA and Media Ignore Qualifications ...................................................................................................... 17
NASA Creates Barriers to Block Female Astronauts................................................................................. 18
NASA Creates Barriers to Block Female Astronauts................................................................................. 19
NASA Uses Stereotypes Against Women .................................................................................................. 20
NASA Uses Women’s Health to Discriminate ............................................................................................ 21
NASA Manipulates Women’s Health ........................................................................................................... 22
NASA Uses Gender Binaries to Discriminate............................................................................................. 23
Critical - NASA Uses Gender Binaries to Discriminate ............................................................................. 24
Critical - Gender barriers in NASA must be broken down ........................................................................ 25
Critical – Discourse Key to NASA Discrimination ..................................................................................... 26
Critical – Gender, Identity and Risk ............................................................................................................ 27
Critical – Gender, Identity and Risk ............................................................................................................ 28
NASA’s policy extends beyond space and into society ............................................................................ 29
Government Complicit in Stopping Women Astronauts ........................................................................... 30
Science and the Space Industry are Patriarchal ........................................................................................ 31
Solvency – Study Women’s Health in Space.............................................................................................. 32
Solvency – All-Female Crew ........................................................................................................................ 33
Solvency – All-Female Crew ........................................................................................................................ 34
Solvency - NASA Key ................................................................................................................................... 35
Politics – Plan Helps Obama ....................................................................................................................... 36
NEG - NASA no longer sexist ...................................................................................................................... 37
NEG - Equal opportunities for women at NASA ......................................................................................... 38
NEG - NASA females don’t want special treatment ................................................................................... 39
NEG – NASA Reducing Age Discrimination ............................................................................................... 40
NEG – Criticism Not Enough, Action Necessary ....................................................................................... 41
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Interplanet Jerrie
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Jerrie Cobb Should Go to Space Now
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A geriatric study of Jerrie Cobb is ethically necessary and justified by the medical information that could be gleaned.
Precker 98 ( Michael Precker, Dallas Morning News, September 20, 1998, Shooting for the Stars: They passed the tests, but these women never got
their change at space, Lexis Nexis, TJB)
Would sending Jerrie Cobb on the space shuttle help right an old wrong? Five U.S. senators and many women's groups, among others, have written
NASA saying yes. In a recent newspaper editorial, Florida Today declared, "We think she deserves it. Heaven knows, she's better qualified than many
others who have made the trip." Ms. Cobb's latest campaign began in March, when she returned from the Amazon and found a letter from Don Dorough,
offering to lead the fight. "The last time around, it was a pretty lonely battle," she says. "A lot of interest now is coming from men. It wasn't that way
before, and I'm just delighted." There's no strategy or timetable. Ms. Cobb is asking friends for help, giving interviews and informal talks, and recently met
with NASA administrator Daniel Goldin. "I don't want a joyride," she says. "I have 55 years' experience flying. I would be perfectly capable of handling any
one of a number of jobs." And if there is scientific value in studying an older man in space, "They need the same studies for women. Most of the older
people are women, and 80 percent of people in nursing homes are women." But Mr. Goldin, according to Ms. Cobb, offered no encouragement. NASA's
responses to letters on her behalf praise Ms. Cobb, but say there's no need and no space for her on the shuttle. "It would be nice to be able to fly Jerrie
Cobb as a consolation, but that's not going to happen," says Ms. McCarter at NASA. "We've honored these women. Nobody wants to slight their
accomplishments. But they were misled into believing they would become astronaut candidates. We weren't the ones who misled them, and we can't
make up for it." Ms. Cobb still doesn't see those answers as final. "I'll be here as long as there's a glimmer of hope," she says. "I wouldn't be spending this
time and effort if I didn't believe it. But down the road, if there's absolutely no way it's going to happen, I'll go back to the jungle and do what I've been
doing." Of the Mercury 13, 11 are still alive. Seven of them, including Ms. Cobb, have stayed close since a 1995 reunion at Cape Canaveral, where they
watched Eileen Collins become the first woman to pilot the space shuttle. When Miss Cobb decided to make a final try for a trip to space, she wrote the
others to ask if they were interested as well. The women talked it over and agreed that their time had passed, but that they'd gladly support Ms. Cobb to
make the trip for all of them. From a file of memorabilia, Jerri Truhill pulls out the letter they all signed: "If you pull it off, we'll be there to cheer you on," it
says. "If you don't, we'll be here to cheer you up."
John Glenn’s recent trip to space sets a precedent for Jerrie Cobb to complete the same kind of study.
Precker 98 ( Michael Precker, Dallas Morning News, September 20, 1998, Shooting for the Stars: They passed the tests, but these women never got
their change at space, Lexis Nexis, TJB)
Just like John Glenn, 13 women endured grueling physical and psychological tests in the early days of the U.S. space program and proved they were
qualified to become astronauts. And just like Mr. Glenn, many of the women never lost their love of flying, their fascination with space and - despite
advancing years - their eagerness to rocket away from our home planet. But unlike Mr. Glenn, those women never had the chance in the first place. And
now that the 77-year-old senator is going back into space, they're finding it a little hard to cheer. "Yeah, I resent it," says Jerri Truhill, 67, who's lived in
Richardson for 35 years. "It wasn't fair then, and it's not fair now. There's not a one of us who wouldn't go in a heartbeat." Wally Funk, 58, a resident of
Trophy Club who's still an active pilot, is more diplomatic. "My feelings are "Godspeed, John Glenn,' " she says, echoing the famous comment from
Mission Control when the first American to orbit the Earth blasted off in 1962. "But I feel badly that he took a spot away from a young astronaut who had
probably waited three or four years for that slot. He's already had his ticker-tape parade. You just hope we learn something from it." But the women who
never got to space, and the people who admire them, aren't just grumbling. They're mounting a campaign, however quixotic, to send one of their own on
the space shuttle as a belated validation of their part in aviation history. Her name is Jerrie Cobb, a trailblazing pilot who never gave up. "They shouldn't
send Glenn again without sending Jerrie," says Don Dorough, an instructor at Fresno Pacific University in California who's heading an effort to lobby the
National Aeronautics and Space Administration on Ms. Cobb's behalf. "They turned her down once because of her gender, and they shouldn't do it
again." On the phone from Florida, Ms. Cobb sounds a little sheepish about all the attention, and has nothing bad to say about NASA or Mr. Glenn. But at
age 67, the dream of space has lured her back from South America, where she has spent most of the past four decades flying humanitarian missions. "I
was probably born with stars in my eyes," she says. "I'm a pilot, and to fly in space is the greatest flight of all. I was willing to lay down my life 38 years
ago for this, and I still am." "Astronette'? Naught!
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Jerrie Cobb - Willing to Go
Jerrie Cobb would give her life to go to space
The Globe and Mail (Canada) 02 (Stephanie Nolen, October 12, 2002, “One Giant Leap Backwards; Women astronauts such as Canada’s
Roberta Bondar are now a familiar sight. But in the early 1960s, a forgotten corps, of extraordinary U.S. ‘astronettes’ passed torturous tests and training
with flying colours-only to see a sexist society snatch their dream away. Today, The Globe’s STEPHANIE NOLEN exposes the long-secret scandal that
inspired her new book” FOCUS; Pg. F1. BR BB)
<Most of the FLATs went back to their lives - they found new jobs, and kept flying. Most still fly today. But four did not give up the dream. Wally Funk, for
instance, has contracted with a private space-tourism company that promises to launch her within a couple of years.
Ms. Cobb ran away to the Amazon jungle to serve as a missionary pilot shortly after the congressional hearings and has lived there ever since. But she
is now, at 71, the subject of an international lobby directed at NASA, whose supporters include Hillary Clinton and the National Organization for Women.
"I would give my life to fly in space," Ms. Cobb says. "I would have then. I would now.">
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Jerrie Cobb’s Story Exemplifies Sexism in NASA
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Chauvinism has been deeply rooted within NASA from the 1960’s up to current society, as demonstrated by the Cobb
case
The Independant, ’99 (7/3/1999, Arthur, Charles, The Independent, “NASA breaks its final frontier- The gender barrier”)
[Scores of American men have been astronauts, but Nasa has sent only four women into space - despite its 1959 train-ing programme for women, begun
months after the one for men, and cancelled abruptly in 1961. When the appointment of Colonel Collins, 42, was announced last year - to the space
shuttle launch on 20 July - she said: "Since I was a child, I've dreamt about space. I've admired pilots, astronauts and explorers." Of the women in the
early training mission, she said: "I couldn't be here today without them. I'd like to say a special thank you to them." The 13 women picked and dropped by
Nasa don't feel like thanking the agency. Jennie Cobb, 28 when she started training in 1960, has agitated to go on a space mission. At 67 she points out
that John Glenn, one of the original seven Mercury astronauts in 1962, flew again last October aged 77. If him, why not her? "A 120lb woman uses less
oxygen and eats less than a 160lb man," she says. "Women can do a boring task for longer than men. A woman's reproductive organs are on the inside that makes us less susceptible to radiation. And we can withstand pain, heat, noise and vibration better than men." Is there anything in men's favour?
"More physical strength." And that's what Nasa seemed to decide was more important in an astronaut. The women's astronaut programme was cancelled
after Nasa said it wanted people with experience as test pilots in jets, a position rarely held even now by a woman. The first woman into space was a
Russian, Valentina Tereschkova, in 1963. The first American woman was Sally Ride, in June 1983. In 1995 Shannon Lucid set a record on the Mir space
station, spending 188 days aloft. The same year, Colonel Collins was the first woman to pilot the shuttle. But the culture of chauvinism appears deeply
rooted at Nasa. In its pecking order, women appear to be clearly ranked: behind even geriatric men such as Glenn and John Young, who was still listed
as having "active flight" status in 1998 at the age of 67. Of Nasa's 119 active astronauts, 49 are women. They don't go into space much and, if they do,
they're usually kept from the controls: only four are qualified as shuttle pilots. Places are reserved for males and females to assemble the International
Space Station. Cobb is not among them.]
Jerrie Cobb and other women in the Mercury program were held to a higher standard than men in the same program
and thus cruelly denied from deserved space flight.
Ackmann, Senior Lecturer in Gender Studies, 98 (November 5, 1998, Martha, Senior Lecturer in Gender Studies, Christian Science
Publishing Society “Right Stuff, Wrong Time: Mercury 13 Women Wait”)
The nostalgic glow that has permeated so much of the recent news coverage of John Glenn obscures a past that is tarnished by denied opportunity and
discrimination. While Mr. Glenn's courage in being hurtled into orbit at his age is laudable, NASA's sexism in the early 1960s certainly is not. No one
understands both the space program's courage and discrimination better than Jerrie Cobb. Ms. Cobb was poised to become the country's first woman in
space 37 years ago. Long before the name Sally Ride was forever yoked with female firsts, Cobb was plucked from the ranks of the nation's top women
aviators to be considered for a trip into space. But just as she was slated to begin final astronaut testing, NASA changed its mind. It seemed Cobb had
the right stuff but it was the wrong time. At age 67, Cobb is still waiting, wondering if Glenn's Discovery mission will open doors for her long-awaited trip
into space. Most Americans are surprised to learn of the Mercury 13 - a group of top-flight women pilots selected for secret astronaut screening in 1961.
After an independent medical research group tested Glenn and the rest of the male astronaut candidates, it wanted to find out if women could measure
up to similar mental and physical tests. Cobb and 12 other women were called to Albuquerque for the trials. They left hard-won aviation jobs and
scrounged up money to pay their way to New Mexico for a chance to be spun, submerged, poked, and prodded through 75 rigorous experiments. The
tests, while similar, were not identical to the men's. Researchers raised the bar for women. No test demonstrated this double standard better than the
"dog dip." For nine hours and 40 minutes Cobb was submerged in sensory isolation tank of warm water. There, without sound, smells, or stimulation of
any kind, Cobb was tested to see if she could maintain her calm and fight off hallucinations. She did. The men's sensory isolation test lasted but three
hours and was conducted not in the tank but in a silent room. Cobb and the other women did well on all tests. Perhaps too well. Faced with unexpected
results, NASA had to determine if women would compete with men for a chance to be launched into space. Before Cobb and the other women entered
final testing, NASA simply told them to go home.
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Jerrie Cobb’s Story Exemplifies Sexism in NASA
Cobb’s chance at flight was denied because women did not fit in the social order of NASA.
Dallas Morning News 98 (Michael Precker, September 20, 1998, “Returning to Sensitive Territory” TODAY; Pg. 6F. Lexis Nexis. VP CC)
<John Glenn, the space hero-turned-senator who will soon become a space hero again, has said a few things over the years that have rankled the
women who wanted to emulate him.
At a congressional hearing in 1962, just a few months after his historic flight, Mr. Glenn defended NASA's unwillingness to include women in the
astronaut program.
Astronauts needed to be military test pilots, he told the same hearing where Jerrie Cobb and Jane Hart, who had passed medical and psychological tests
given to astronauts, pleaded for an equal chance to fly in space.
"The fact that women are not in this field is a fact of our social order," Mr. Glenn said.>
Jerrie Cobb and the Mercury 13 women were crushed by the NASA’s patriarchal system and thus gave up hope.
Precker 98 ( Michael Precker, Dallas Morning News, September 20, 1998, Shooting for the Stars: They passed the tests, but these women never got
their change at space, Lexis Nexis, TJB)
NASA hired Ms. Cobb as a consultant, but when the appointment ended after one year, her dream seemed doomed. She has spent much of her time
since then in South America, out of touch for long periods. Friends describe her as heartbroken and bitter, but she says it's not true. "I'm too grateful for
this gift of life," she says. "I decided I won't sit around and mope about it. I'll get busy using my talent to help others." Ms. Truhill, who was divorced with a
young son at the time, came home to Dallas and went back to work, flying planes for a company she co-owned and racing planes for fun. "After a while, I
figured the hell with them," she says of the space agency. "I had to get on with my life." She later married her partner, Joe Truhill, and they retired from
the cockpit a few years ago. She's proud of her niche in aviation history and the thought she may have inspired other women. But with her blunt manner
and quick wit, Ms. Truhill has a hard time masking a lingering resentment. A new book about women pilots, Amelia Earhart's Daughters, quotes her as
saying that when Mr. Glenn blasted off in 1962, she muttered at the TV set, "I hope you bust your ass." She's not thrilled it's in print, but she doesn't deny
it. Wally Funk, meanwhile, says NASA's rejection was a momentary setback. "In flying, you're always preparing for an alternative," she says. "So I went to
my alternative. I'm still kicking in doors to keep on going." Her resume includes experience around the world as a pilot, flight instructor and lecturer, and
as an investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board. Her walls are full of honors and her scrapbooks are full and detailed, with just one
omission: her first flight. "I'm just disappointed the folks never took a picture of me when I was 5 years old, jumping off the barn into a haystack with my
Superman cape," she says. Ms. Funk has space dreams of her own, but they don't involve NASA. She has hooked up with a project to build a plane that
would rocket into orbit, part of the worldwide competition for a $ 10 million prize for the first private group that launches people into space. "My launch
date is Feb. 4, 2002," she says in the brash, confident tones of an aviator. "I'll have my nose pressed against the window, enjoying that view." She has
liftoff
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Jerrie Cobb – Coverup
NASA has always attempted to cover up the story of Jerrie Cobb and the Mercury 13
Precker 98 ( Michael Precker, Dallas Morning News September 20, 1998, Shooting for the Stars: They passed the tests, but these women never got
their change at space, Lexis Nexis, TJB)
The story of the Mercury 13, as the women pilots came to be known, was never secret. News accounts at the time tried - and failed, thank goodness - to
bring the word "astronette" into the language, and even included some of the women's measurements. From the beginning, Life magazine practically
campaigned for them ("Soviet space girl makes U.S. men sound stupid," proclaimed the cover after cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova broke the gender
barrier in 1963). Publications from Ms. to George have picked up the story since. Newspapers and TV periodically rediscover the saga. Jerrie Cobb's
memoir is just one of several books on the subject, and Warner Bros. has bought rights for a movie. But a lot of people still may be surprised to learn, as
Bryant Gumbel put it on Dateline NBC several years ago, that NASA rejected women who "may have had the right stuff, but they were the wrong sex." If
you've never heard of her, says Jerri Truhill, don't apologize. "NASA didn't want anybody to know about us," she says. "They failed to acknowledge us
until they had to. It's just an embarrassing chapter for them." In a nutshell, this is what happened: In the late 1950s, NASA invited a select group of
military test pilots to undergo tortuous tests that might simulate what a man would encounter in space. From that group came the Mercury 7, America's
first astronauts, one of whom was John Glenn. But the doctor in charge of the testing, W. Randolph Lovelace, had heard that the Soviets might be
training women for space flight. In 1960 he invited Ms. Cobb, an Oklahoma native who flew her first plane at age 12 and had logged 10,000 hours in all
kinds of aircraft, to his clinic in Albuquerque, N.M. Dr. Lovelace subjected her to the same regimen the men had to endure, and she passed. Over the
next year, 25 more women - including some of the most experienced female pilots in the country - traveled to New Mexico at their own expense in hopes
of becoming astronauts. "We never said "ouch,' we never complained," says Ms. Truhill. "They said the guys bitched a lot, but we never did. We were
motivated and we sure weren't going to show any weakness." "The pain didn't matter," concurs Wally Funk. "I wanted this so bad." The testers sprayed
ice water into the women's ears and shoved 3-foot-long hoses down their throats. They administered barium enemas and stuck needles into skulls to
measure brain waves. There were strength and endurance tests, isolation chambers and a test that involved drinking radioactive water to track it through
the system. "When we walked out of there, we had no secrets from those people," Ms. Truhill says with a laugh. Of the 26 women, 13 passed and went
home to await the call from NASA. "We really thought we might go into space before the guys," Ms. Truhill says. "We were experienced pilots. We
weighed less and we used less oxygen, which was important because they couldn't launch very big payloads." The next phase, they thought, was set for
September 1961: more tests and jet pilot training in Pensacola, Fla. "We were so primed," Ms. Funk says. "I was fixing to leave the next day. So I was
kind of shocked when we got the telegram." The telegram, terse and without explanation, said never mind. Although NASA knew of Dr. Lovelace's tests,
he had conducted them privately. The next step was going to involve military facilities, government money and official acceptance. But NASA declared it
only wanted astronauts who had been military test pilots, and that was a club many years away from admitting women.
Women such as Jerrie Cobb have been historically omitted from media coverage of NASA’s space programs
The Globe and Mail (Canada) 02 (Stephanie Nolen, October 12, 2002, “One Giant Leap Backwards; Women astronauts such as Canada’s
Roberta Bondar are now a familiar sight. But in the early 1960s, a forgotten corps, of extraordinary U.S. ‘astronettes’ passed torturous tests and training
with flying colours-only to see a sexist society snatch their dream away. Today, The Globe’s STEPHANIE NOLEN exposes the long-secret scandal that
inspired her new book” FOCUS; Pg. F1. BR BB)
<When astrophysicist Sally Ride became the first American woman in space in 1983, there was a media frenzy. Canadian physician Roberta Bondar
won her share of headlines when she was launched in 1992. And reporters couldn't get enough of a gentle U.S. Air Force lieutenant-colonel named
Eileen Collins, who became the first woman to actually fly the space shuttle and then the first woman to command an American space mission.
But shuttle launches barely make the news today, and with women making up a quarter of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's
astronaut corps, there is routinely one woman on each flight.
Female astronauts barely made the news in 1960 either. And you won't find the story in American history textbooks. But just at the dawn of the women's
movement, a group of superbly qualified female pilots was poised to lead the country into space. As it turned out, the country wasn't ready for them. In
one of the great unreported scandals of the space age, 13 women were recruited in secret, and excelled in testing, but were abruptly dumped from the
program - and never told why.>
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Jerrie Cobb – Congress Angle
Jerrie Cobb faced sexist ridicule in Congress despite her qualifications
Ackmann, Senior Lecturer in Gender Studies, 98 (November 5, 1998, Martha, Senior Lecturer in Gender Studies, Christian Science
Publishing Society “Right Stuff, Wrong Time: Mercury 13 Women Wait”)
Deeply disappointed, Cobb was able to force Congress in July 1962 to hold hearings on official qualifications for astronauts. The lone voice in support of
the women, Rep. James Fulton of Pennsylvania, declared "maybe we shouldn't be talking about keeping women out of space ... women under extreme
conditions have risen and have really either done as well as a man or better." Chairman Victor Anfuso banged the day's hearings to adjournment by
mocking the congressman. "Mr Fulton is a bachelor and he thinks women are out of this world." Day two brought Glenn and fellow astronaut Scott
Carpenter to the hearing room. After plaudits and autographs, the two were asked what qualifications future astronauts should have. "If we could find any
women that demonstrated they have better qualifications [than men], we would welcome them with open arms," Glenn stated. The final day of hearings
was cancelled; Cobb was again told to go home. Congress supported NASA's recommendation that all future astronauts be drawn from the ranks of
military jet test pilots - a group that did not include women until 1972.
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NASA - Rhetoric of Men Leading Women
NASA’s Development depended on the binary opposition of Gender – Only Men were “Qualified” to enter the Final Frontier
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant leaps
and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[Popular portrayals of American spaceflight regularly propose that the history of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
epitomizes the masculin- ist organization of American post-WWII modernity. Films such as Philip Kaufman’s The Right Stuff (and earlier
book), or Ron Howard’s Apollo 13 (see Llinares, this volume), seemingly correlate the success of NASA, and by exten- sion America
and/or humanity, around the fortunes of strong, stoical, active and resourceful men. Meanwhile, women, such as the astronauts’ wives,
seemingly feature as rather passive, marginalized and abjected. Manly bodies are shown here capable of ‘risk taking’, ‘frontier
exploration’, ‘technical decision making’, ‘competition’ and ‘attention to detail’, all qualities which Connell (1995) suggested typified
‘hegemonic’ masculinities and legitimated patriar- chies.1 Popular examples of NASA’s articulation of masculinist social power are
complemented by various scholarly accounts explaining how NASA has historically subjugated women (Ackmann, 2004; Kevles, 2003;
Moule and Shayler, 2003; Penley, 1997; Weitekamp, 2004). This chapter takes the underlying claim found within such studies – NASA
articulated a gendered binary – as its starting point. Rather than foregrounding the stories of women in NASA as a revisionist counterpoint,
as many of these studies have, I will go further and critically assess the dis/organization of underlying binary oppositions which often
frames explanations of the relationship between NASA and gender.]
NASA’s rhetoric of exclusion of women depends on the gender sterotype of women following after men
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[Harry Hess, a Princeton Professor and Chair of the Space Studies Board at the National Academy of Sciences, adopted a similar
approach to explain away female astronauts by stating unequivocally that ‘leaving the kids behind was not part of womanhood’s
idealized image’ (quoted in Kevles, 2003: 47). Ultimately, as Weitekamp (2004) surmised of the Apollo era: ‘NASA had no room in
its mission objectivities for acting as an agent of social change’ (p. 157). Indeed it was not until 1978, and the development of the
shuttle programme, that NASA would select women as astronauts.8 By this point frontier analogies were being drawn upon
retrospectively to excuse the omission of women from past astronaut selections; NASA’s media rhetoric talked of the shift from
explorers to pioneers, or from surveyors to homesteaders (Kevles, 2003: 56). Making a similar nod to spatialized gender roles,
Carolyn Huntoon, describes what she saw as the reasons behind the new policy for astronaut selections to the space shuttle: ‘It
was going to have more space in it for the crews. It was going to have some of the conveniences of home that previous space
capsules had not had. And the laws were changing in our country that women could no longer be discriminated against. The
decision was made that we would select qualified women to fly in space’ (2002). Again the domestication of space missions
appears to go hand-in-hand with the presence of women in outer space. In both cases, stereotypical gender roles, frequently made
through a gendered mis)reading of American frontier expansion in the 19th century, provided an ill-fitting though seemingly
seductive temporal analogy to explain away almost thirty years of institutionally prejudicial accounts of bodily difference and
space exploration. This re-telling of a spatial division of labour, as a teleological sequence, where male explorers precede female
pioneers, reveals the way prescriptive bodily performances were retrospectively legitimated within a heterosexual matrix, even by
women themselves.]
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NASA re-enforces gender dichotomies and images
NASA’s discourse on gender reproduces gender dichotomies- attempting to stabilize rather than
transform binaries
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[Across these varied sources, from films to oral histories, I have sought to render visible some of the performances surrounding
the dis/organization of gendered identities within NASA. Just as Butler (1990) proposes, my methodological choices are manifestly
also my political strategy. I have focused on those moments within and surrounding NASA where gender roles became disengaged
from a straightforward alignment with biological sex. My intention here has been to reveal the lived circumstances and embodied
practices through which totalizing gender discourses are enacted. Following Butler (1990), I have focused on the way embodied
performances, from grass-cutting to astronaut testing, inscribe and transform normative binaries. My reading of NASA is, of
course, partial, developed from a particular theoretical stance towards gender, combined with three extended, though unavoidably
limited, slices of NASA history. I have sought to foreground how a diverse set of statements concerning gender implicitly perform
the gendered subjects they were explicitly trying to represent. The elision of the performativity of gender, which is perhaps best
exampled by John Glenn’s reference to the social factuality of gender roles, both obscures and reinforces its normative powereffects. My focus upon women and NASA, while in keeping with Butler’s (2004) own understanding of women as a necessary
aspect of treating gender as a ‘becoming’, has ostensibly downplayed some of the multiple masculinities within NASA. However, as
the tensions between the Mercury 7 astronauts and rocket scientists near the start of this chapter reveal, as well as NASA’s use of a
non-coherent concept of risk in the ‘Lovelace’ hearing, I suggest that multiplying gendered identities, whether male or female, does
not necessarily help expose and challenge their normative power-effects. Put more formally, perhaps it is problematic to valorize
‘Self’ multiplicity and then risk overlooking the way multiplicity can sometimes subjugate that which appears ‘Other’.]
NASA and the Air Force discriminate against Women Pilots for Projecting their International Image
Shinabery 10- Education specialist and Humanities Scholar with the New Mexico Museum of Space History (Michael, October 31,
Alamogordo Daily News, “This Week in Space History: Lyndon Johnson Grounds the Mercury 13,” Lexis-Nexis.
[While the Mercury 13 exceeded all expectations, they "would never get a chance to fly into space," capecodtoday.com said. Not only was
the Air Force "not in favor of female pilots," political reality intervened. While "they had technical skills, physical abilities and content
knowledge to stand on equal ground with the Mercury 7 men ? sending a 'woman to do a man's job' did not project the image of
international strength."]
Women have historically had a marginalized role in NASA
Dominguez, 98 (3/12/98, Robert, Daily News Staff Writer, Daily News (New York), ìLAUNCH LADY SPACE
SHUTTLE COMMANDER EILEEN COLLINS IS A WOMAN WITH A MISSION,î LexisNexis) TWP
<<In NASA's early days, women in the space program were relegated to support roles mainly as technicians,
engineers or mathematicians. Back then, the most high-profile females were actually the astronauts' wives, who'd
fix stoic smiles beneath those beehive hairdos as they waited for their men to come home. In 1978, women were
finally allowed to join the astronaut corps. Six women, including Sally Ride, the first American woman in space,
began training alongside the male candidates. There are currently 119 astronauts in the program, of which 29, or
nearly 25%, are women. In 1990, of the 85 astronauts, 13 were women, or 15%. And now comes Collins, whose
appointment was turned into a media event by President Clinton in Washington last week. Itching to get back to
Houston to begin training for her mission, Collins wouldn't say whether all the hoopla made her uncomfortable. "I
don't know how I feel about [the attention]," she says. "I just know I really want to do the job well. I know people
are watching, and people are looking up to me, and someone like me does not want to make a mistake and let
people down.">
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Sophomore Scholars
NASA’s sexism degrades women
Despite statements claiming otherwise, NASA has proven itself sexist.
Ahuja 99 (Anjana Ahuja, April 17, 1999, “Women, the final frontier,” The Times, Lexis Nexis, TJB)
It has taken almost 40 years, but the first all-woman space crew could soon be ready for lift off, says Anjana Ahuja To some, John Glenn, 77, is the
original all-American hero. He is the tough young spaceman who graduated to become a fearsome old senator and who now wields considerable
influence in American political circles. Others, however, will never forgive him for his relentlessly chauvinistic views on why women should be banned
from space. In closed-door congressional hearings on the American space programme held in 1963, Glenn was uncompromising: "Men go off and fight
wars and fly the airplanes ... Women are not astronauts because of our social order; that's the way of life." Fellow Nasa officials were equally forthright.
"The thought of a US spacewoman makes me sick to my stomach. I'd prefer to send a monkey into space than a bunch of women," said one unnamed
employee. As a result, 13 American women who had trained tirelessly in secret - many of them outperforming their male counterparts - never flew. And so
the Soviets achieved the coveted feat of putting the first woman in space, Valentina Tereshkova, in June 1963.
NASA’s sexism was not accidental or subconscious-many held these feelings and made it known.
Ahuja 99 (Anjana Ahuja, April 17, 1999, “Women, the final frontier,” The Times, Lexis Nexis, TJB)
Truhill, like many of her 13 colleagues who passed the so-called Mercury tests but never flew, can never forget the gender war that characterised
America's fledgling space programme. "In the old days, the men just thought we were awful and we thought they were great," she recalls sadly. "One
man, who didn't like the idea of women going up, referred to a woman astronaut as 'Ninety-five pounds of recreational equipment'. I was so damned mad.
These were the kind of insults we got from our peers and colleagues. The fact that 13 women made it through the tests spoke well of the 25 women pilots
at that time. They thought Jerrie was an anomaly, but they found that anomaly repeated 12 more times." Truhill, Cobb and their colleagues were invited
to Glenn's recent launch, but boycotted it because they felt he had earned his second ride in space through his political connections. Refreshingly, her
deep-rooted sense of injustice has not prevented Truhill from seeing the funny side of sending OAPs into orbit: "Did you see they had to help the old
duffer off the shuttle? Isn't that just too damned bad? We were sittin' here watching him and howling with laughter. We thought it was hysterically funny. I
bet that wounded his monster ego. The only thing that would have made it better was if he had been flown by a woman. Now that would have really
chafed him. "Now it's time for Nasa finally to come round and let women fly the shuttle and command a mission. Of course you don't want women doing
things they are not qualified for, but the women in the astronaut corps are fantastic. After all, we found out in the 1960s that the female body was better
suited to space travel. "Yes, Nasa will be accused of gimmickry but you have to prove you can do it. I think male astronauts today would not think
anything of it. It does your heart good and makes me so proud to think that men and women now work alongside each other without thinking about it.
"The day that an all-woman mission flies without anybody saying a thing about it, is the day we've arrived."
NASA uses women astronauts as objects of sexual desire in order to keep men ‘interested’ on space flights
John ‘04 ,former employee of NASA headquarters office of physical and biological research and co-designer of the Mars Rover, current employee of the
space operations mission directorate at NASA (2004 volume 11, “NASA: Making Space for Women” murj Page 19). TB KR LI
[This issue was discussed in the media before any official choices were announced. The LA Times reported on
September 7, 1958 that, to ward off boredom, the “occasional cocktail” or “feminine companionship” could be
advantageous, for “[t]he spaceman is sure to retain his interest in having a female companion aboard even if liquor
loses its appeal”—unless, of course, she turns out to be “a nagging back-seat rocket pilot.”1
Perhaps an official would have been able to clear up misconceptions about women in space flight. Colonel John
Stapp, a “[w]orld-renowned authority on space flight,” discussed some of women astronauts' supposed shortcomings in the Star: “The government program in space was military…and women had always been excluded from
participation in defense spending.” Since “[p]hysiologically women are about 85% as efficient as men of the same
weight and size and age... recognized in the field of sports, where the time-scales for the 100-yard dash set up for
women differs from that set up for men,” Stapp concluded, “To expose women needlessly to the incalculable dangers of pioneer space flight would be like employing women as riveters, truck drivers, steel workers or coal miners.”2 Women seemed to have little hope before the requirements were even announced.]
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Historical Male domination of Space
Aerospace Historians often avoid topics of gender
Mackowski, ‘06 (Mackowski, faculty associate at Arizona State University and historian specializing in the
comparative history of twentieth-century science/technology/medicine, particularly space exploration, January
2006 (Maura Phillips, ““Manned” Spaceflight for Women?” Technology and Culture 47, no. 1,
http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/tech/summary/v047/47.1mackowshi.html.)
[Aerospace history is being preserved in hundreds of books about machines, programs, and
missions. Less well-examined are the hearts and minds of the human beings who made things
happen. There are a few scholarly biog- raphies of notable inventors, aviators, and
administrators to add to a fair number of coffee-table books in which astronauts or cosmonauts
carry out their missions then move offstage, and every trade publisher seems to have one
astronaut autobiography on its list. Close examination of human needs, loyalties, and
motivations is missing in much of this literature, though. A prime example is the way historians
have avoided the topic of gender. The historiography of women in aerospace is a jumble of
memoir, wishful thinking, amateur sleuthing, and quality scholarship, but without enough of the
latter beyond the work of Deborah Douglas, Reina Penning- ton, Molly Merryman, and Susan
Ware.1 Perhaps because spaceflight is a relatively new endeavor, this lack is especially
noticeable in that subgenre. There seems to be next to nothing on gender that cannot be
characterized as presentist or laudatory, and far too many curiosity-shop lists of oddities and
legends. Too often gender receives nothing more than a passing nod from authors who assume
(and perhaps contribute to) the masculinization or neutering of spaceflight history.]
Space has been historically male dominated in the US
Dunn, Associated Press Aerospace Writer, 99 (4/11/1999, Marcia, Desert News, “All-woman crew may fly shuttle for science”), Lexis Nexis
Men have dominated space flight -- and consequently space medical research -- since Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin opened the frontier 38 years ago
this Monday. Of the 278 people who have flown on U.S. spacecraft since Alan Shepard's 15-minute hop May 5, 1961, only 31 have been women. This
official roster excludes Christa McAuliffe and the two other rookies who were killed aboard Challenger. Women were not admitted to NASA's astronaut
corps until 1978 and did not fly on a space shuttle until 1983. No woman piloted a shuttle until 1995. And women will not command a shuttle flight until
Eileen Collins takes the left front seat aboard Columbia in July. For now, the space station era seems to be shaping up the same way -- mostly male. Of
the six U.S. astronauts and six Russian cosmonauts training to live on the international space station, only one, American Susan Helms, is female. And
only one woman was among the seven NASA astronauts who lived on Mir. It was only because her ride home was delayed that Shannon Lucid ended up
staying six months in 1996, a record for women worldwide and for Americans of either sex.
There have historically been about 10 times as many men as women in the space program
The Canberra Times 7/25/05 (“So why is it? NASA connects with feminine sides and older, wiser ways in space” Section A; Page 6.
Lexis Nexis.) KT, BR, LI
[The mission is commanded by NASA's only female shuttle commander, Lieutenant Colonel Eileen Collins (her
aviator's call sign is Mum). But despite this and the fact that most shuttle missions nowadays contain two or three
women among the crew, spaceflight has long been male-dominated. I have read -although been unable to verify
this -that of about 450 people to have entered space, only 46 were women. The Soviet Union, as well as putting the
first man in space (Yuri Gagarin), also put the first woman into space (Valentina Tereshkova) in 1963 -a feat not
copied by the US for more than a decade.]
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NASA Excludes Female Astronauts
Only 10% of NASA’s astronauts are women and they endure constant discrimination
John ‘04 ,former employee of NASA headquarters office of physical and biological research and co-designer of the Mars Rover, current employee of
the space operations mission directorate at NASA (2004 volume 11, “NASA: Making Space for Women” murj Page 19). TB KR LI
[On October 5, 1977, a NASA news release stated that the sixth group of astronaut applicants that had reported to NASA's Johnson Space Center for interviews included
one woman. That woman was Dr. Sally K. Ride from Los Angeles, CA, who would go on to become the first American woman in space.24 Ride was one of six women
chosen in the astronaut class that year, which had seen 1544 women's applications out of a total of 8079. She “downplay[ed] the first woman angle of her selection,” but
still faced questions about her marital plans.25 In 1978, NASA once again tackled the ongoing issue of space suits for women, stating that “finding the per- fect fit is
important with space suits” and therefore “the system must accommodate extra-small sizes for women.”26 The initial excitement of women finally being added to the
astronaut corps seemed to be followed by a quiet period, during which little was done to continue recruit- ment or discuss women astronauts. In the search for the next
astronaut group, women accounted for only 390 applicants out of 2,937.27 When 1983 arrived and Ride was preparing for her flight, the media turned its attention back to
women astronauts, who now comprised 8 out of 76, or 10.5%, of the astronaut corps.28 Ride wasn't often called an 'astronette', but Time magazine did ask whether she
wept when things went wrong. Ride responded to the atten- tion by saying, “It may be too bad that our society isn't further along and that this is such a big deal.”29 The
attention did not seem to solve NASA's recruit- ment issues, however. There were only two women among the 50 astronauts selected for the next 10 flights. NASA
headquarters, responsible for space policy, and Johnson Space Center, responsible for choosing amongst the applicants, had a “mini-war” over the optimal recruitment
strategy.30]
NASA directors made excuses to justify sexism.
Precker 98 ( Michael Precker, Dallas Morning News, September 20, 1998, Shooting for the Stars: They passed the tests, but these women never got
their change at space, Lexis Nexis, TJB)
Jennifer McCarter, a public affairs specialist for the space shuttle program, says the decision must be viewed in the context of the times. "NASA was
male, all these government agencies were male," she says. "Not that it was right or fair, but for women to get involved in those programs was impossible."
In a recent interview with The Associated Press, former Mercury flight director Chris Kraft put it more bluntly. "Had we lost a woman back then because
we decided to fly a woman rather than a man," Mr. Kraft said, "we would have been castrated." Ms. Cobb and Jane Hart, another of the Mercury 13
whose husband was a U.S. senator, went to meet then-Vice President Lyndon Johnson. He was sympathetic but refused to intervene. The two women
testified at congressional hearings in 1962, but nothing changed. Sixteen years would pass before women were accepted into the astronaut program, and
five years after that Sally Ride became the first American woman in space.
The ratio of male to female astronauts is still remarkably disproportionate – men outnumber women two to one
Dunn 10, (4/6/2010, Marcia Dunn, The Guardian, “Mission Accomplished NASA Women Set Record,” The Guardian, Final Edition: Section Guardian
International, Page 16. LexisNexis) TWP
<<Men will still outnumber women by more than two to one on board the shuttle and station, but that won't take away from the remarkable achievement of
having four women in space at one time, coming 47 years after the world's first female astronaut, Valentina Tereshkova, rocketed into space.>> A former
schoolteacher, Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger, is among the female astronauts about to make history, as well as a chemist, Tracy Caldwell Dyson, who
once worked as an electrician, and two aerospace engineers, Stephanie Wilson and Japanese astronaut Naoko Yamazaki. Japan celebrated its own
space feat with Discovery's liftoff. Two of its astronauts were circling Earth at the same time, one on the shuttle and the other on the station. Only three
shuttle missions remain after this one. Nasa intends to retire its fleet by the end of September, but is unsure what will follow for human spaceflight.
President Barack Obama Enhanced Coverage Linking Barack Obama -Search using: * Biographies Plus News * News, Most Recent 60 Day will visit the
area on 15 April, while Discovery is still in orbit, to fill in some of the blanks. Commander Alan Poindexter and his crew will spend nine days at the station,
replenishing supplies. The astronauts will install a fresh ammonia tank for the cooling system - a cumbersome job requiring three spacewalks. They will
drop off science experiments as well as an extra sleeping compartment, a darkroom to improve picture-taking from the lab's high-quality window, and
other equipment weighing thousands of kilos. The space station will continue operating until 2020 under the Obama Enhanced Coverage Linking Obama
-Search using: * Biographies Plus News * News, Most Recent 60 Days plan. The idea is for commercial rocket companies to eventually provide ferry
service for astronauts. Nasa is currently paying for seats on Russian Soyuz rockets. That's how Caldwell Dyson got to the space station on Sunday, two
days after being launched from Kazakhstan.
Once combined, the shuttle and station crews will number 13: eight Americans, three Russians and two Japanese.
Photograph: Gary I Rothstein/EPA
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Interplanet Jerrie
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NASA excludes post-menopausal women
Fears about an Aging Workforce Direct NASA towards Age Discrimination and Leads to Losses of Competency
Khol 2003- Editor of Machine Age (Ronald, “NSAS gets away with blatant age discrimination,” Machine Age, Volume 75, Issue 13, 10 July. [Online]
EBSCO Host, SL)
For openers, NASA is concerned that its workforce of engineers is aging and losing expertise through retirements. But paradoxically, for the most part it
refuses to hire seasoned engineers in midcareer who have been cut loose by defense contractors and very much would like to get hired by NASA. The
agency is largely replacing retirees with kids just out of school who bring nothing in the way of experience, and they sometimes lack good judgment. In
addition (and here I know the forces of political correctness will excoriate me, but it must be said), NASA has been tripping over its feet striving too hard
for diversity. It wants to have a workforce that "looks like America." The problem is that a workforce that looks like America might end up being about as
smart as America, which means NASA won't have many bona fide rocket scientists in its ranks. Another troubling thing is that "a workforce that looks like
America" has come to represent code words for: "White middle-aged males need not apply." It has been said NASA is trying to shake the image that it is
populated by guys with crew cuts wearing white shirts and neckties. Age discrimination, however, seems to be endemic to the entire aerospace industry.
The CEO of one prominent aerospace company says his firm and others in the business "fill the front end with people right out of school." They do this
even though, he admits, it often makes aerospace companies repeat the mistakes they have made earlier. Increasingly, there is no more tribal lore to
help avoid catastrophes. One middle-aged engineer with highly impressive technical credentials has shown me an exchange of e-mails he has had with
the human-resources department at a NASA installation. The paper trail reveals a bureaucratic nightmare reeking of blatant age discrimination. To protect
my source, I am going to be vague about details, but you'll get the drift of what is going on. The first document is a job posting from NASA requiring an
experienced individual to do exceedingly sophisticated work in a particular engineering specialty. The next document is a copy of his application, which
includes a work history that fits the position precisely. So far so good. But then he received a letter from NASA rejecting him for a different job for which
he hadn't even applied. So he sent NASA a letter pointing out the error. That brought a response that was a masterpiece of obfuscation. The significant
thing is that it kept mentioning repeatedly that NASA was trying to fill its positions with people who were "fresh out," meaning fresh out of college. In other
words, the agency wasn't going to consider anyone who was middle aged. In my opinion, this stance seems not only to be illegal but also may shed light
on why NASA is losing technical competency.]
NASA forces female astronauts to take pill and labels post-menopausal women unfit
The Canberra Times 7/25/05 (“So why is it? NASA connects with feminine sides and older, wiser ways in space” p. A6. Lexis Nexis.) KT, BR, LI
[There are a couple of provisos. The first is no pregnancies. NASA already has a rule that pre-flight contraception is mandatory.
Usually, women crew also use the contraceptive pill to suppress menstruation while in space. Secondly, post-menopausal females would need to be
careful about bone loss induced by weightlessness. Usually, bone density recovers slowly on return to Earth. This may not happen so readily without
estrogen.]
Osteoporosis counterarguments pose no threats to female crews
Landis - Ohio Aerospace Institute - 2000 (Space Policy Volume 16, Page 167-169.)
Generally speaking, women are more susceptible to osteoporosis than men. They are at higher risk because by the time women achieve their peak bone
mass (mid-30’s) they end up having 10 to 30% less bone mass than men have at their peak bone mass. After this peak, men and women both lose bone.
For a period of a few years during menopause, women lose bone at a faster rate than men; however, this difference in bone loss rate can be treated with
estrogen-replacement therapy.
It is not all clear that bone calcium loss in microgravity and bone loss due to osteoporosis are similar effects, and no difference in bone loss between men
and women has yet been confirmed in spaceflight data. The longest duration space flight by a woman, Shannon Lucid [8] seems to have had, in fact, a
lower bone loss that long duration flights by men. Since Lucid’s total flight time of 233 days in space included a duration comparable to that required for a
mission to Mars, it is very likely that differences in bone-loss rate between males and females is a non-issue.
It is also plausible to suggest that the same methods used to mitigate post-menopausal osteoporosis in women on the ground may very well be
applicable to bone-loss in space; in this case, a female crew would actually be preferred, because of the considerably wider base of experience on the
effects of these chemical countermeasures.
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Pressure to perform better than men
Female astronaut feels pressure to perform well in order to keep NASA open to other women
Kaffsack 98( March 5, 1998, Hanns-Jochen, Deutsche Presse-Agentur, “Eileen Collins: she who must be obeyed in
space”, SEK)
[When she climbed aboard the U.S. space shuttle Discovery at Cape Canaveral in February 1995 she was radiating pure joy. That was
when Eileen Collins became the first woman pilot of the 100 ton spacecraft. Three years later, U.S. Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Collins
has seen another dream come true. The 41-year-old native of Elmira, New York, is soon to become the first woman to command a space
mission. President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton are so pleased with the decision by the U.S. National Aeronautics
and Space Administration (NASA) that they decided to hold a special White House ceremony for Collins on Thursday. NASA did not take
any risks with its new appointment. Collins, a likeable woman, is certainly an accomplished pilot with almost 5,000 hours of flying time in
30 different types of aircraft beneath her belt. In addition to being married, she holds university degrees in mathematics, science and in
space management systems. Like every successful astronaut she works hard, often sacrificing weekends. Her training as second woman
test pilot at Edwards Air Force Base in California was an important phase in her career. he pressure was high. Collins is on the record
saying that she feels she cannot make a mistake on the job, because if she did she would ruin opportunities for other young women who
want to be pilots and astronauts. The U.S. has had women astronauts since 1983. For Collins, the pressure will stay high. In fact, it will
hardly be higher than when she walks to the shuttle for the first mission under her command as technicians prepare the craft for blast-off.
Controlling the space shuttle requires extreme concentration and an enormous sense of responsibility. And stress is something Collins
takes very seriously. But when it comes to take-off, she says, her mind blocks out everything that could distract her. By now, Collins is
already quite familiar with space missions. She became an astronaut in July 1991 and following her 1995 Discovery flight she was aboard
the Atlantis last May for the sixth rendez-vous with the Russian Mir space station. For some time now, there has been speculation that
Collins could be chosen to command one of the shuttle flights that will ferry parts inton orbit for construction of the international space
station. If such a flight were to blast off at the end of the year, she would have to turn her back on her hobbies of golf, camping, mountain
climbing and photography - at least for a while. Despite her extraordinary drive to succeed however, Collins, will not find it easy to break
the records set by fellow woman astronaut Shannon Lucid. Lucid took part in five space missions and spent 188 consecutive days aboard
the Mir space station - more than any other U.S. astronaut. NASA's decision to name Collins as a flight commander is its second highprofile personnel decision this year after deciding in January to send John Glenn, septogenarian former astronaut turned U.S. senator, back
into space for some research on aging.]
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Interplanet Jerrie
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Sophomore Scholars
NASA Discriminates Despite Evidence of Competence
NASA ignored studies showing women to be equal or better than men in space
Mackowski ‘06 (Mackowski, faculty associate at Arizona State University and historian specializing in the comparative history of twentieth-century
science/technology/medicine, particularly space exploration, January 2006 (Maura Phillips, ““Manned” Spaceflight for Women?” Technology and Culture
47, no. 1, http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/tech/summary/v047/47.1mackowshi.html.)
[If the reason for this state of affairs has been that not enough time had passed since the first spaceflights to provide historical perspective, then
Dr. Mackowski is a faculty associate at Arizona State University, Tempe. She is the author of Testing the Limits: Aviation Medicine and the Origins of
Manned Space Flight, published in 2005 by Texas A&M University Press as part of the Centennial of Flight series, which includes a chapter on the
Lovelace study. She is currently working on a perhaps the recent publication of four books on one particular episode in women’s history signals a
change.2 The topic is a study conducted by W. Randolph Lovelace II in the early 1960s at his Albuquerque clinic, site of preliminary medical and
psychological screening for the Mercury program, on the feasibility of using women as astronauts. The authors of these four books, Margaret A.
Weitekamp, Bettyann Holtzman Kevles, Stephanie Nolen, and Pamela Freni, possess very different historical credentials. Over- all, the narrower the
author’s approach, the more accurately she has told the story of the Lovelace study.
A pilot, flight surgeon, director of the army’s Aero Medical Laboratory at Wright Field during World War II, and longtime friend of the award- winning flier
Jacqueline Cochran, Lovelace knew that there was a sizable population of female aviators in the United States. He also knew that a medical colleague,
Brigadier General Don Flickinger, was considering an air force “manned” space mission with a female astronaut. In September 1959, after a
serendipitous meeting between Lovelace and Jerrie Cobb—a distin- guished twenty-eight-year-old woman pilot, holder of several speed and altitude
records—Cobb was invited to take Lovelace’s Mercury tests. Love- lace, Flickinger, Cobb, and Cochran then identified and tested another two dozen
experienced women pilots, finding twelve more who performed as well as or better than males. The project was funded primarily by Cochran, leader of
the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs) during World War II and president of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, which certi- fies all
aerospace world-record attempts.
However, Lovelace’s position as chair of the NASA Special Advisory Committee on Life Sciences and NASA Administrator James Webb’s ap- pointment
of Cobb as a “special consultant” in May 1961 gave the impres- sion that this was an official NASA study. That summer, the tests were abandoned when
the military and NASA refused to continue putting facil- ities at Lovelace’s personal disposal. Cobb and another test subject, Jane Hart, persuaded
Congress to hold hearings on gender and astronaut selec- tion in the summer of 1962, but this solidified NASA’s determination to recruit only military jet
test pilots. This effectively shut women out because, not being authorized to serve in combat roles, they were ineligible to be- come military test pilots.
Hence no American woman could qualify to be- come an astronaut before 1978, and not until 1990 would a woman pilot a space vehicle.>
NASA had little to no scientific reason for keeping women from spaceflight
Mackowski ‘06 (Mackowski, faculty associate at Arizona State University and historian specializing in the comparative history of twentieth-century
science/technology/medicine, particularly space exploration, January 2006 (Maura Phillips, ““Manned” Spaceflight for Women?” Technology and Culture
47, no. 1, http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/tech/summary/v047/47.1mackowshi.html.)
[The American female astronaut-hopefuls built their case primarily on scoring a first against the USSR, the dominant space power in the early 1960s.
They also pointed out that they weighed less than male pilots, not an insignificant consideration at a time when NASA launches were often prob- lematic.
In June 1963, however, Valentina Tereshkova eliminated the first argument by piloting Vostok 6, and successful Mercury flights emboldened NASA and
indicated that lower weight alone could not give women an edge. President John Kennedy’s moon mandate accelerated the competition between the
Americans and Soviets, and with neither political nor scientific justification the women’s involvement seemed undesirable. The Lovelace women were
consigned to space limbo. On the scene too early to draw sup- port from the embryonic women’s movement, they faded too quickly from view to offer the
movement any lift in turn. Periodically a feature item would pop up in the media, a “never-before-told” tale portraying NASA and astronaut John Glenn
(who testified in the congressional hearings) as having deliberately kept women from achieving equality. Such stories gave scant credence to NASA’s
legitimate concerns. For example, the agency could ill afford a civilian death or a stunt contest as it struggled to catch up to the Soviets, and there were
bona fide differences between the skills of jet test pilots and even the most experienced pilots of propeller aircraft. The Mercury program’s requirement
that astronauts have engineering degrees brought expertise that the women, who with one exception had only high school diplomas or nontechnical
degrees, could not.]
15
Interplanet Jerrie
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Sophomore Scholars
NASA Discriminates Despite Evidence of Competence
NASA is deliberately discriminating against women even though they proved to be as good as the men
John ‘04 ,former employee of NASA headquarters office of physical and biological research and co-designer of the Mars Rover, current
employee of the space operations mission directorate at NASA (2004 volume 11, “NASA: Making Space for Women” murj Page 19). TB KR LI
[The barriers to women wishing to join the space program were delineated in the late 1950s when NASA began to search for the first American astronauts. NASA required
that the astronauts have a bachelor's degree in engi-neering or its equivalent, and be a graduate of a test pilot school, with a minimum of 1500 hours of flying time as a
qualified jet pilot. The military was asked to scan for prospective candidates, and from their ranks were pro-duced the candidates that would be considered and, if lucky,
chosen.3 This posed a problem for women wishing to enter the program, since at that time women were not allowed to become test pilots.4 However, in 1959 Dr.
Randolph Lovelace, the doctor at the Lovelace Foundation for Medical Research respon-sible for screening the male astronaut candidates, heard that Russia was training
a female cosmonaut. Decidingthat American women should also be tested, he asked an acquaintance, renowned pilot Jerri Cobb, to participatein testing. She passed the
same physical tests given to the Mercury astronauts. On the basis of these results,Lovelace proposed the following year that women would in fact make superior
astronauts due to their lower bodymass and requirements of food and oxygen. He then gathered together 25 women, 13 of whom proved capable ofpassing the same
tests as the men. However, NASA had never sanctioned the research and in July 1961 informedLovelace and the women subjects that they would no longer have access
to the requisite testing facilities. NASAIn a memo to Dr. George Low, director of spacecraft and flight missions, Dr. Dale Smith in the Office of Life Science Programs
wrote: “The medical portion of a selec- tion and training program is but a guide in selecting physically and mentally qualified people, and as you know, women fall within
the physically qualified; there- fore, there must be other valid reasons why or why not we are to use women in our flight program.” What was the reaction to this decision?
For females in space, the 1960s can be considered a decade of sarcasm and excuses. In a speech by space pioneer Werner Von Braun given at Mississippi State College
on November 19, 1962, he responded to the question “Do you ever plan to use women astronauts in your space program?” by stat- ing, “Male astronauts are all for
it...We're reserving 110 pounds of payload for recreational equipment.” Columnist Robert Ruark, writing in the August 8, 1962, Washington Daily News, at first seemed to
support the notion of women entering space. He began, “It seems to me the government is being downright fusty in not kicking off an immediate program to send the
ladies into space.” However, upon reaching his closing remarks, one is forced to question his sincerity—“Strike the shackles from our women, cry I, and cut them loose in
space! It might even...encourage them, after the novelty has worn off, to return to the kitchen.” Despite this prevalent attitude, the women did not give up. Mary Funk, one
of the women subjects who had undergone testing for the Mercury project, declared that she was still awaiting her day.6 In July 1963, Jerri Cobb brought the case of
women astronauts before Congress. A congressional hearing that convened to consider the issue included testimony by spacecraft and flight mis- sions director Low as
well as prominent astronauts John Glenn and M. Scott Carpenter. Glenn testified, “My mother would have been able to come to Washington and pass the physical, but
she probably couldn't play for the (NFL) Redskins.” He claimed a willingness to “welcome women aboard with open arms” if they demonstrated greater capabilities for
space flight than men.7 It was clear that NASA did not intend to change its policies, continuing to uphold the highest level of personal qualifications Congress revived study
of the issue in 1963, after the Soviet Union launched the first woman into space. One senator suggested that “we launch a realistic program on every front to give them the
full equality of opportunity which our space agency, in this instance, has flagrantly denied them.” However, one NASA spokesman did not feel swayed, instead feeling “sick
at my stomach” at “the talk of an American space woman”. Women were reminded at the hearings that they could still play “a vital role” if they joined NASA behind the
scenes to lay the foundations for America's space achievements.9 NASA even rescinded the requirement of being a test pilot before becoming an astronaut,10 which
prompted at least two women to apply—however, neither of them would be chosen.11 After this noble attempt at penetrating the astronaut core, it was back to more
excuses and sarcasm. What did the public and media have to say now?]
Gender politics are the only thing that kept very qualified women from the WASP program
Butler 98 (9/10/98, Mary Grace Butler, "Men and Women Up in the Air")
<Leslie Haynsworth and David Toomey have written an intriguing account of how a few pioneer women fliers were of great service to
their country, and how, but for gender politics, the US might have been first to send a woman into space. (The Russians won when
Valentina Tereshkova orbited Earth for nearly three days in 1962.) In the early days of World War II, Henry "Hap" Arnold, later
commanding general of the Army Air Forces, was one of the visionaries who saw the future of air power. Events connected him with two
pilots who saw the possibilities for women aviators: Jacqueline Cochran, a well-connected flier of cross-country races, and Nancy
Harkness Love. WASP evolved from the Women's Flying Training Detachment, headed by Cochran, and the Women's Auxiliary Ferrying
Division, headed by Love. Before it was disbanded in 1994, more than 1,000 pilots had been trained by the WASP and flown more than 60
million air miles. Thirty-eight were killed. By the end of 1944, the women had flown every aircraft in the American inventory, including
the earliest jets. They flew P-51 Mustangs as ferry pilots months before men in combat; they ferried B-17s to Europe; they towed targets
for gunnery practice. In May 1944, when the B-29 was being developed as a long-range bomber for the Pacific war, design problems
scared off male pilots. A smart lieutenant colonel named Paul Tibbetts enlisted two WASPs from Florida's Eglin Air Force Base to show
the guys at Alamogordo, N.M., that the B-29 was flyable after all. Flight instructors said women pilots learned quickly without being
pushed, were not overtly competitive, and worked in a spirit of cooperation with each other and their machines. But Air Force officials and
politicians said the WASP should remain civil service, a status that denied its members all military benefits, including funerals.>
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NASA and Media Ignore Qualifications
Preferred Women Testing Qualifications are Ignored; Media Coverage empirically Reduces Women to Feminine Objects
Shinabery 10- Education specialist and Humanities Scholar with the New Mexico Museum of Space History (Michael, October 31,
Alamogordo Daily News, “This Week in Space History: Lyndon Johnson Grounds the Mercury 13,” Lexis-Nexis.) SL
[Jerrie Cobb was the first recruit. She had 7,000-plus flight hours, "far more than any of the male candidates," and held world records for
altitude and light-plane speed, capecodtoday.com said. Cobb came to New Mexico's Lovelace Clinic "under strict secrecy," said
www.ninety-nines.org . She helped recruit 12 peers, the FLATs, or Fellow Lady Astronaut Trainees, culled from 25 women deemed
eligible through FAA records. All had to be 35 or younger, completed four years of college, and flown a minimum 2,000 hours. Those
chosen were Myrtle Cagle, twins Jan and Marion Dietrich, Wally Funk, Gene Nora Jessen, Janey Hart, Jean Hixson, Irene Leverton, Sarah
Ratley, Bernice Steadman, Jerri Truhill and Rhea Woltman.
Some had families, some were teachers and engineers, and even professional pilots. Cobb flew for a World War II veteran "ferrying
aircraft worldwide," said mercury13.com . In her log book were four-engine bombers she'd flown to France, and an AT-6 Texan to South
America. Testing was physical, psychological and torturous. "The women had to swallow a rubber tube so their stomach acids could be
tested," said www.nasa.gov . "Doctors tested the reflexes in the ulnar nerve of the women's forearms using electric shock. To induce
vertigo, ice water was shot into their ears, freezing the inner ear so doctors could time how quickly they recovered." "Pain didn't matter to
me. I wanted this so bad that it was okay," said Funk, quoted on mtholyoke.edu , in a story on Martha Ackmann's book "The Mercury 13"
(Random House). "We drank radioactive water that was measured as it was expelled from our bodies." "In August 1960, Dr. Lovelace
announced Cobb's test results at the Space and Naval Medical Congress in Stockholm, Sweden," said "Women Astronauts." "Lovelace
declared, 'We are already in a position to say that certain qualities of the female space pilot are preferable to those of her male colleagues.'
" Publicity followed. "Women Astronauts" said Life published a "positive" article, but that the Washington Star and Time "reduced Cobb
to a feminine object instead of the talented pilot that she was."]
Single-sex women space mission incites opposition
Landis, Ohio Aerospace Institute, Ph. D Physics, NASA 2000 (Space Policy Volume 16, Page 167-169.)
The concept of a single-sex space mission is hardly new – after all, Americans have sent 27 humans to the moon, all of them
male, and the vast majority of the flight experience on the Russian Mir space station is with crews that were entirely male. In
fact, out of the 278 astronauts who have flown on NASA missions (as of April 1999), only 31 have been female.
It is therefore apparently not the idea of a single-sex crew, but the idea of a specifically female crew incites opposition. If I were
to suggest that the crew of a Mars mission be entirely male, the suggestion might be considered ‘politically incorrect,’ but it
would hardly be considered impossible – after all, there have been dozens, probably even hundreds, of proposals for all-male
missions to Mars.
Right now, 32 of NASA’s 144 active-duty astronauts are women. So why not an all woman crew for a Mars mission?
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NASA Creates Barriers to Block Female Astronauts
Women in the Mercury Project were sidelined by backroom politics and blatant sexism despite the grueling training
they underwent
The Seattle Times, ’03 (8/26/2003, Marlowe, Kimberly B., Seattle Times, “In the space program’s infancy, 13 female pilots
were grounded by sexism”, CJC)
Into this shifting post-war atmosphere came outer-space mania. After the Russians put Sputnik into orbit in 1957, the U.S.
ratcheted up its efforts. These women became astronaut test subjects for various reasons, including the fact that their smaller,
lighter frames made them more suited to tiny space capsules. Then there were the Russians' plans to send a female cosmonaut
into space, which some anti-communist forces here worried would give a platform to subversive women-as-equal-comrades
rhetoric. Once the 13 women began the physical and psychological testing, it became clear that there were some even better
rea-sons to include them. These pilots, all of whom fought adverse conditions and stunningly primitive equipment to learn to fly,
proved to be just as tough, or arguably tougher, than the male pilots in the Mercury 7 space program. The women passed an
extraordinary set of tests that pushed them to extremes of physical and psychological stress, and they fully expected to be
called for duty in some phase of the space program. But backstabbing and turf wars within the ranks of the U.S. military and
space program, and opposition from Congress and the Johnson Administration brought about an abrupt end to their dreams.
Although women were more qualified, bias regarding male pilots as the ideal American kept them from space.
Butler 98 (9/10/98, Mary Grace Butler, "Men and Women Up in the Air")
[But in 1960 and '61, women were tested for the program, and some researchers said they made better potential
astronauts (lighter weight, less likely to panic, better at coping with solitude). However, the national culture made
the male military pilot what the authors call "the apotheosis of the masculine ideal," and that bias determined
policy. Only in 1995 did NASA, nominally a civilian agency, allow a woman to pilot a spaceflight: Air Force Lt.
Col. Eileen Collins was at the controls for the first rendezvous of the US space shuttle with the Russian space
station Mir. The authors are correct when they tell us their story may have a familiar resonance. It is indeed one of
talented, resourceful, and willing women, promises reneged, and dreams deferred. We've heard it before in other
venues, and we'll hear it again. Here, it's well told.]
NASA hid sexism with claims of military pilot only qualifications
The Guardian, 02 (04/02/2002, Krum, Sharon, The Guardian “Women: Space cowgirl: Wally Funk was set to become one of the world's first female
astronauts - until Nasa pulled the plug on its women's training programme. Only now, age 63, is she finally going into orbit”)
Funk,Wally, member of cancelled Mercury 13 flight, Air Safety Investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board in Washington, DC., Honorary
Colonel of Lousiana, FAA Safety Counselor of Federal Aviation Administration. Cockpit Resource Management Program for Braniff Airlines.] (But one
week before she was due to enter the final phase of training, the women's programme was abruptly cancelled.)Funk still has the telegram informing her it
was over. ("We didn't use words like sexism in those days," she says. Nasa claims the programme was abandoned after President Eisenhower mandated
that all astronauts must come from the air force. As there were no female military pilots in the 1960s, that was very much that.) “I was disappointed, but
not bitter," Funk says. "I was 21 years old, and I thought, 'Wally, you're still going into space, just not right now.'" More than 40 years later, "right now" is
nearly here. Last week she announced she is going to become the first space tourist in the US, blasting off into orbit in 2005 aboard a rocket currently
under construction in Mojave desert."I never for a minute thought I wouldn't go," she says. "And when it became clear Nasa wasn't going to take me
(Nasa rejected her four times), I knew I would go privately, whatever the cost."The cost is Dollars 2m (pounds 1.4m), and includes 45 days of training in
Russia and California (zero gravity, G force), but Funk isn't paying. Her flight, which will launch from a spaceport on the South Pacific island of Tonga, is
being sponsored (she can't reveal by whom), but you know that if she had to, she would raise the money herself, whether it meant holding cake sales or
running naked through the streets of New York.While the US millionaire Dennis Tito became the world's first space tourist in April 2001, paying Dollars
20m for a seat on a Russian rocket, Funk's flight will be the first with a private company. (Nasa balks at the idea of taking civilians to space for joyrides.
The Russians need the money.) InterOrbital Systems, the Californian outfit developing the Neptune Spaceliner rocket, have big plans for the space
tourism market, and Funk is to be the jewel in the crown of their business. "After her initial flight we plan to train Wally to become a staff pilot for us, flying
other tourists into space," says IOS co-founder Randa Milliron."I feel that Wally flying with us is a perfect ending to the injustice she suffered 40 years
ago.
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NASA Creates Barriers to Block Female Astronauts
NASA uses Air Force requirements as an excuse to exclude women from becoming astronauts
The Canberra Times 7/25/05 (“So why is it? NASA connects with feminine sides and older, wiser ways in space” Section A; Page 6.
Lexis Nexis.) KT, BR, LI
[There are various reasons -most of them spurious -for the dearth of female astronauts. It is true, as I have written
about before, that fewer women enter the science-related disciplines (and the pilot training) that are required for
aspiring astronauts. But of those that do, there are plenty to choose from to fill the very few vacancies that arise for
astronauts. The idea that the astronaut corps should be a boys' club started early in NASA and was slow to die.
Women applied to join the original crews selected for the Mercury program in the early 1960s -and proved
themselves more than capable in assessments -but NASA decreed that all astronauts had to be military jet pilots and
the US Air Force refused to train women for that until 1976.]
Glenn’s NASA Defense Against Accusations of Sexism Excludes Women
Daily News Washington Bureau, 98 (08/16/1998, Sisk, Richard, “Sexism Charge Unfair,” Daily News (New York). JY)
Suspicions arose when NASA ruled out accepting 13 women who had passed physicals and other tests similar to those undergone by the men at the
Lovelace Clinic in New Mexico in the early 1960s.) The 77-year-old Glenn said it wasn't sexism that kept out the women, who were dubbed astronettes,
but rather the guidelines for astronauts laid out by President Dwight Eisenhower. Ike had limited the space program to military test pilots, and there
weren't any female military test pilots in that era, Glenn said."I didn't set those criteria up," said the soon-to-retire Democratic senator from Ohio. "NASA
never selected those women. They were never in training." Glenn said he became the fall guy after he made an offhand remark at a congressional
hearing on his 1962 space flight, which made him the first American to orbit Earth. In commenting on women in space, Glenn said he told the hearing,
"My mother would have been able to come to Washington and pass the physical, but she probably couldn't play for the [NFL] Redskins."The Discovery
space shuttle crew will conduct more than 80 scientific experiments, including using Glenn to measure the effects of weightlessness on senior citizens.
The shuttle's commander, Air Force Lt. Col. Curt Brown, joked that Glenn "may not be so happy after a few days in orbit, because we're going to work
him to the bone."
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NASA Uses Stereotypes Against Women
NASA justifies discriminating against women because of stereotypes and characterizations
John ‘04 ,former employee of NASA headquarters office of physical and biological research and co-designer of the Mars Rover, current employee of
the space operations mission directorate at NASA (2004 volume 11, “NASA: Making Space for Women” murj Page 19). TB KR LI
[“Girls who are clamoring for equal rights as astronettes should consider all the problems of space travel. How, for instance, would they like to wear the same space
suit without a bath or a change of clothes for six weeks? The first thing a girl astronaut would think of, naturally, is a good supply of perfume and deodorants. How will a girl
keep her hair curled in outer space? It's not too early to start working on a space travel beauty kit right now.”12
San Diego Union, March 7, 1968:
“First of all, it would cost us more than $100,000 just to redesign the space suit to fit the female anatomy... No women have so far qualified for the job... America
already has too many astronauts... The very best reason for not choosing women as astronauts was the fact that women tend to get married.”13
NASA Current News, March 27, 1968:
“There's just too much difference between men and women. We really don't speak the same language.”14
And with that, we left the 1960s and rocketed into the slightly more promising 1970s. Unfortunately, but perhaps to no one's surprise, women's infiltration of NASA and
acceptance as respected scientists made slow headway.
In May 1970, a NASA woman made headlines: a Sunday Star headline blared, “26-Year-Old Blonde Works in NASA Control”. For the curious, the Star made sure to
clarify that “[s]he has met several of the astronauts, but says there are no romantic entanglements.” While the “blonde” said that “[t]hey offered me the job working with
spacecraft trajectories. I didn't think I was qualified for the job,” the newspaper pointed out that “someone, whose mind may or may not have been on celestial mechanics,
decided to hire her anyway.”]
National and NASA assumptions of female capability create challenges for women astronauts.
Ackmann 03—author of The Mercury 13 (4-21-03, Martha, interviewed in PW forecasts, “Babes in NASA-Land”) RS
MA: I did quite a bit of work at the NASA History Office in Washington, DC. They were very, very cooperative. On the NASA Web site you can now see
the story of the Mercury 13 told along with some of the early adventures of women in space, but I was dismayed to find the last time I was down at the
Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum that the women aren’t acknowledged there, and I didn’t find them at the Kennedy Space Center at
Canaveral either. PW: What kind of challenges do women who want to become astronauts today face? MA: Certainly the numbers would bear out that we
don’t have nearly as many women pursuing the career as men. That’s because of attitudes about women in space and science and mathematics and, I
would say, in daring occupations. That’s not only located in the ideology at NASA, but all across the country, where it is still unfortunately assumed that
girls don’t have an interest in math and that being an astronaut is something too dangerous for them to pursue.
Discrimination and difficulty are common for women pursuing a NASA career.
Sacramento Bee 08 (4-9-08, Anita Creamer, ìShe’s flying toward her dreamsî)
Amber Bogdan is a young woman with a plan. You know how you hear about people flailing their way through their college years, trying to stumble across a suitab
career path? Not Bogdan. "My dream has always been to be an astronaut," she says. "I knew that for NASA to choose me specifically to fly, I'd have to be a milita
test pilot. But I wasn't ready to go into the Air Force straight out of high school." So the 20-year-old from Elk Grove is majoring in aeronautical science -- flying -- at
Arizona's Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and she plans to enlist in the Air Force afterward. "It's always been the Air Force that I've been going after," says
Bogdan, who graduated from Laguna Creek High School in 2005. "People say, 'You should go into the Navy as a pilot.' But there's something about night landings
an aircraft carrier that scares me." I'm with you on that. But isn't the concept of floating around in space a little scary, too? "Not at all," she says. Right. I'll just watc
TV from down here, thank you."I saw 'Apollo 13' when I was little, and I grew up seeing broadcasts of shuttle landings," Bogdan says. "As a little kid, you think, 'I w
to do that one day.' "And that just stuck with me. I'd like to be part of that." Maybe it's one measure of how far we've come as a society. As a schoolgirl in the 1960
certainly saw little to relate to -- careerwise or otherwise -- in the grainy footage of the early space shots and lunar landings. But American girls growing up in the 1
could simply add "NASA shuttle pilot" to their lists of life possibilities. And that's the way it should be. Even so, Bogdan says only 18 percent of the 2,000 students
Embry-Riddle's Arizona campus -- there's an Embry-Riddle campus in Florida, too -- are female. She remembers being warned at freshman orientation to expect
discrimination as a woman in the aviation industry. "Every now and then, something happens," she says. "My experience is that I've had a professor in flight
instruction who doesn't think that women should be here. "You have to let it roll off your shoulders, and you have to go after what you know you're capable of doin
a big deal, but it's not really talked about much on campus." She has learned to fly in college. Now she has her private pilot's license, and she's working on her mu
engine rating. Before she graduates in May 2009, she wants to complete her instrument rating requirements. From there, her strategy goes long-range -- very long
range. First, she wants to enter officer training school and then qualify as an Air Force pilot. "It's very difficult to do that," Bogdan says. "There are not very many p
slots. But if I get one, I'll go to pilot training school and serve my expected time in the Air Force. "And if I'm good enough, I hope to apply to Air Force test pilot scho
And then if I'm good enough, I'll apply to NASA as a pilot." Who said Americans are a people with a short attention span and a need for immediate gratification? N
Bogdan. "The whole road is a bunch of ifs," she says. "But I'm definitely willing to go through it." If everything goes as she's mapped it out, she won't be applying to
become an astronaut until she's 35 or 40.
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NASA Uses Women’s Health to Discriminate
NASA uses difference in women anatomy to discriminate against the small amount of astronaut women
John ‘04 ,former employee of NASA headquarters office of physical and biological research and co-designer of the Mars Rover, current employee of
the space operations mission directorate at NASA (2004 volume 11, “NASA: Making Space for Women” murj Page 19). TB KR LI
[On October 5, 1977, a NASA news release stated that the sixth group of astronaut applicants that had reported to NASA's Johnson Space Center for interviews
included one woman. That woman was Dr. Sally K. Ride from Los Angeles, CA, who would go on to become the first American woman in space.24 Ride was one of six
women chosen in the astronaut class that year, which had seen 1544 women's applications out of a total of 8079. She “downplay[ed] the first woman angle of her
selection,” but still faced questions about her marital plans.25 In 1978, NASA once again tackled the ongoing issue of space suits for women, stating that “finding the perfect fit is important with space suits” and therefore “the system must accommodate extra-small sizes for women.”26 The initial excitement of women finally being added to
the astronaut corps seemed to be followed by a quiet period, during which little was done to continue recruit- ment or discuss women astronauts. In the search for the next
astronaut group, women accounted for only 390 applicants out of 2,937.27 When 1983 arrived and Ride was preparing for her flight, the media turned its attention back to
women astronauts, who now comprised 8 out of 76, or 10.5%, of the astronaut corps.28 Ride wasn't often called an 'astronette', but Time magazine did ask whether she
wept when things went wrong. Ride responded to the atten- tion by saying, “It may be too bad that our society isn't further along and that this is such a big deal.”29 The
attention did not seem to solve NASA's recruit- ment issues, however. There were only two women among the 50 astronauts selected for the next 10 flights. NASA
headquarters, responsible for space policy, and Johnson Space Center, responsible for choosing amongst the applicants, had a “mini-war” over the optimal recruitment
strategy.30]
NASA’s discrimination continues in the Status Quo, especially against pregnant women.
John ‘04 ,former employee of NASA headquarters office of physical and biological research and co-designer of the Mars Rover, current employee of
the space operations mission directorate at NASA (2004 volume 11, “NASA: Making Space for Women” murj Page 19). TB KR LI
[Under the heading of health care, the panel addressed the issues of bias due to pregnancy and family life of women astronauts. It pointed out that “all women are
accepted into the astronaut program during their child- bearing years.” Since female astronauts are not consid- ered for assignment if they are pregnant or attempting to
become pregnant, women are at a disadvantage if they have difficulty conceiving. The panel suggested that NASA provide assisted reproductive technologies as part of
the astronauts' medical care. It also stressed the
“unknown risk to mother and fetus if conception occurs just prior to or in flight” and the lack of data on “the pharmacodynamics of birth control pills in zero gravity.” The
panel noted that learning about birth control pills would be important since it is also used for noncontra- ceptive benefits, adding that “the design of 'family friendly' training
schedules, travel responsibilities and deployment to remote sites should be taken seriously.”
The final issue on which the panel made recommen- dations was human-machine interfacing, stating that “[i]t should be the goal that all people selected to be
astronauts be able to perform all tasks associated with the astronaut job regardless of size or gender.” They even pointed out a particular problem with Extravehicular
Activity (EVA) suits and Shuttle egress suits, noting “poor design in current suits or lack of appropriately sized off-the-shelf suits in the future should not be used as an
excuse to exclude women from certain jobs or to provide them with equipment that is less than optimal for their own performance.” The panel concluded that much
research was still needed to deal with gender dif- ferences and that NASA must not take a “one size fits all” approach.45]
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NASA Manipulates Women’s Health
Loopholes in NASA’s draft policy make it so that the agency can oversee women’s test results, which thus influence
NASA’s decision on whether or not they want to hire them.
John ‘04 ,former employee of NASA headquarters office of physical and biological research and co-designer of the Mars Rover, current employee of
the space operations mission directorate at NASA (2004 volume 11, “NASA: Making Space for Women” murj Page 19). TB KR LI
NASA's draft policy is modeled quite closely on NIH's inclusion policy, but does include a number of differ- ences. The scope of NASA's draft policy requires all NASAfunded human and associated modeling research to provide a statistically valid analysis. It encourages compliance of animal research studies with this policy, but does not
mandate it. The policy allows exceptions if they are appropriate based upon the purpose of the research or health and safety of the research subject. This is to ensure that
someone doing research on a single-sex health problem, such as prostate cancer, is not prevented from doing research because he or she is not including women. The
NASA draft policy requires that research be done to show whether sex/gender effects are to be expected. NASA recommends examining the same types of past studies
with the addition of bed-rest studies and space flight studies. NASA also requires that the research plan then include a description of the composition of the proposed
study population in terms of gender and provide a rationale for the selection. The plan is also to include proposed outreach programs for recruiting and retaining subjects.
NASA requires that statistical analysis be con- ducted if prior studies strongly support the existence of significant differences or if prior studies neither support nor negate
significant differences. In all of these cases final analysis of sex/gender must be included as part of the deliverables or a plan must be given to show that analysis will be
completed in the future. The policy also stresses the importance of includ- ing the results of sex/gender analysis in publication sub- missions, even if the analysis reveals
no sex/gender effects. When prior studies do not support the existence of sex/gender effects, the policy encourages but does not require sex/gender considerations in the
experimental design.>
NASA forces female astronauts to take pill and labels post-menopausal women unfit
The Canberra Times 7/25/05 (“So why is it? NASA connects with feminine sides and older, wiser ways in space” Section A; Page 6.
Lexis Nexis.) KT, BR, LI
[There are a couple of provisos. The first is no pregnancies. NASA already has a rule that pre-flight contraception
is mandatory. Usually, women crew also use the contraceptive pill to suppress menstruation while in space.
Secondly, post-menopausal females would need to be careful about bone loss induced by weightlessness. Usually,
bone density recovers slowly on return to Earth. This may not happen so readily without estrogen.]
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NASA Uses Gender Binaries to Discriminate
NASA’s utopian exceptionalism has glorified the masculine as the expert body and marginalized the feminine****
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel,
“Giant leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[During the Apollo programme, many NASA employees were, as McCurdy (1993: 56–60) describes, young people, overwhelmingly men,
living in hotels and motels, working long hours well into the evening and seeing their friends and family perhaps only one day a week.
NASA Apollo-era management analyst Charles Bingham echoes this image as he describes how his staff at Johnson Space Center: . . . had
the opportunity to select very high-quality people to come work on the staff, which means that most of them were very highly self-motivated. It was not a
question of people in dull, sluggish jobs, and you have to try to pump them up in order to get them to get away from the water cooler. It was not like that
at all. Almost without exception, the people who came to work there were just charged with this emotion (Bingham, 2000) This intensive work ethic
operated as a gendering process, as it presupposed that NASA required people who would dedicate themselves solely to the space
programme, exceptional people whose lives could be eulogized as beacons of the bodily regime required to organize America’s
exceptional destiny (McCurdy, 1993, 1997). While concluding his 1961 ‘Moon Landing’ speech President Kennedy emphasized the
character of NASA’s work ethic in these terms: It [the lunar landing] means a degree of dedication, organization and discipline which have not
always characterized our research and development efforts. It means we cannot afford undue work stoppages . . . [he then asks that] every scientist, every
engineer, every serviceman, every technician, contractor, and civil servant gives his personal pledge that this nation will move forward, with the full speed
of freedom, in the exciting adventure of space (Kennedy, 1961). Such sentiments were frequently reiterated by NASA’s senior management. For
example, deputy administrator Hugh Dryden was quoted in NASA’s Future Program Task Force Document stating: ‘We must not delude
ourselves or the nation with any thought that leadership in this fast-moving age can be main- tained with anything less than determined,
whole-hearted sustained effort’ (quoted in NASA 1965: 19). By conflating utopian exceptionalism with highly contingent bodily practices
and work regimes, both Kennedy and Dryden pre- sented the values which an image of a ‘better’ humanity would not just desire but
inevitably require. In this manner, NASA’s demarcation of the ‘expert body’ within the recruit- ment policy of ‘exceptional people’ tacitly
constructed different bodily practices, knowledges, spacings and technologies including those in the home or even the mall as somehow
perhaps more ‘passive’, ‘banal’ or ‘marginal’ to this exciting epicentre of American modernity. Feminist scholars of technology and
science provide some important insights into the dichotomous constructions of gender/ technology across different spaces and times
(compare with Lerman et al., 2004). For example, Judith McGraw (2004) explains how in post-WWII America woman and domestic
technology were mutually rendered feminine and invisi- ble, as both were viewed as serving the basic biological functions of food, clothing or shelter, rather than as a part of a broader project of ‘human creativity’ or ‘progress’ (p. 32). This distinction can be readily
positioned within the inter- linked dualisms of public/private – active/passive – productive/reproductive and masculine/feminine spaces
(see Cowan, 1976 and Pacey, 1999). Bettyann Kevles (2003) characterizes this division as an extension of the mapping of Cold War
geopolitics into the American home, wherein ‘The Soviets promised women equal opportunities in careers like medicine and engineering;
capitalists offered women consumer goods and the luxury of remaining at home to use them’ (p. 3). Presumably, for these ‘capitalist
women’, freedom was to be equated not with equal opportunities to work but with freedom from the exhaustion of domestic work, a
freedom nevertheless bound up with domestic space. And yet, as Kevles (2003) acknowledges, post-WWII labour shortages and less timeconsuming domestic responsibilities as a result of household technologies, together with broader economic changes (Massey, 1994),
increasingly meant that women desired, and were sought after in, a variety of conventionally ‘mas- culine’ careers, including NASA.]
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Interplanet Jerrie
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Sophomore Scholars
Critical - NASA Uses Gender Binaries to Discriminate
Women are associated with the position of “wife” in relation to space, leading to labeling and subjugation
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[Astronaut identities have ostensibly long been constructed alongside their ‘Other’: the seemingly supportive yet demure, passive,
domestically bound and rather abject astronauts’ wife. For example, in 1959 Life magazine ran two covers back-to-back, depicting the
original Mercury Seven astronauts and their wives (see Figures 1 and 2). Here the physical contrasts between the astronauts and their
wives (clothing, hair-length, jewelry and make-up) are aligned with discursive binaries between men and women as public/personal actors.
For example, the men are described as part of an ‘epochal mission’, seemingly conjuring up images of extensive heroism, while the focus
on the wives’ ‘inner thoughts and worries’ returns us to ostensibly more ‘feminine’ interests.5 Similar gendered contrasts are articulated in
the The Right Stuff film adapta- tion of Tom Wolfe’s same-titled novel. In one scene, for example, the wives of prospective astronaut testpilots sit indoors describing their anxieties about their husbands’ work, while their husbands exemplify stoicism – appearing relaxed as
they recall their missions around the BBQ outside. Later in the film, the Mercury 7 astronauts are unveiled to the press and asked how their
wives feel about their work. John Glen declares: ‘My wife’s attitude towards this has been the same as it has been all along my flying
career, if it’s what I what to do, she’s behind it’. Meanwhile their wives, including some who had earlier expressed doubts, clap along with
the gathered press crowd. Throughout the film we are presented with scenes of the wives supporting their husbands in public, despite
expressing some private fears or concerns. At no point, however, do the wives appear to desire more active involvement in the space
programme themselves; appearing instead content with their role as domestic supporters. Notably all the NASA employees in the film,
with the exception of nurses, are portrayed by men. As Llinares argues (this volume) Ron Howards’ Oscar-winning film Apollo 13
presents equivalent genderings. Here, seemingly uncontested expressions of masculinity/femininity are essentialized in exactly the terms
Butler seeks to problematize. Men appear as active agents who are strong, heroic and creative, while women – the astronauts’ wives –
appear as nurturing, demure and domes- tically bound, seeing space exploration, as a threat to this identity. In one scene, for example,
Marilyn Lovell tells her husband she cannot attend his launch because their kids are busy at school. Penley (1997) captures the masculineheroic aura of the rest of the film: ‘Using only duct tape and gumption NASA teamwork turned into deliverance . . . [Ron Howard’s
Apollo 13] recreates an era when NASA appeared faultless and heroic’ (pp. 12–13) Despite the seeming ubiquity of gendered binaries –
between public/private, active/passive, mind/body, reason/emotion, production/reproduction etcetera – these images are often presented as
performances rather than uncontested essen- tialisms. Indeed, in one scene in The Right Stuff, one of the astronauts’ wives reveals her lie
to the astronaut selectors about the normative appearance of her family – at this point in the film she had decided to live away from her
husband after feeling isolated. Moreover, the actual astronauts’ wives themselves readily acknowledge the managed nature of their
identities, as Susan Borman (wife of Apollo 8 commander Frank Borman) recalls: They had people looking into the background of the men,
[and] they also had people looking into the background of the wives because they didn’t want an oddball . . . it wasn’t discussed, it wasn’t written, but . . .
you had better be in every sense of the word, the All American Family in everything you say and do! . . . (quoted in PBS, 2005) Nasa wanted perfect
wives, perfect children, perfect homes. There was certainly some pressure there. (quoted in Cuddon, 2007) Tom Wolfe similarly describes his
perceptions of the astronauts’ wives: ‘As far as the wives were concerned, their outlook was the same as that of officers’ wives generally,
only more so. The main thing was not to say or do anything that reflected badly upon your husband’ (Wolfe, 1979: 132). As Butler (1990,
2004) suggests, normative genderings require mental and physical effort, and self- discipline to be maintained.]
NASA women rarely held power positions and discrimination through persistent normative gendering practices forced
many to quit
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel,
“Giant leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[While NASA recruited women, this does not automatically prohibit the organized persistence of normative gendering practices. Indeed,
by the 1960s women had long been contributing to American aeronautical science and engineering, especially during WWII, while binary
assumptions persisted about the alignment of ‘masculine’/‘feminine’ and ‘male’/‘female’ work under the rubric of American progress
(Kevles, 2003). Many women working for NASA during the 1960s and 1970s testify to pervasive disciplinary and self-disciplinary
techniques that articulate normative gender binaries.]
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Interplanet Jerrie
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Sophomore Scholars
Critical - Gender barriers in NASA must be broken down
Gendered binaries still exist in NASA - Women’s passion and skill in subverting many gender essentialisms illustrates
that more progress is both necessary and possible.
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[Feminist scholars have observed (Lerman et al., 2004) that the presence of women in such stereotypically ‘masculine’ careers did eventually
provide a repertoire of case studies that would help feminist writers and activists later challenge the straightforward alignment of
‘masculine’/‘feminine’ with ‘male’/‘female’. Given such experiences within NASA, it is perhaps not surprising to find how Charles Bingham, who
once worked for NASA human resource development at Houston, expressed the pessimism felt by women (and ethnic minorities) towards
employment in NASA during the Apollo era: If you know NASA at all, you know this is not where women and minorities would normally turn as a
first opportunity for a job. At that time [during Apollo] particularly even with the best women in the world, there were not that many women
taking advanced engineering programs. That’s not to say that they were not out there, but it is to say that you had to work harder to go find them
or to make the fact known that Houston was a good place for women and minorities to work. A lot of them didn’t believe it. A lot of them didn’t
believe that you could go into an old-fashioned engineering shop and ever be given any responsibility or become a real partner in the
organization (Bingham, 2000). It is important to note that while normative gendered binaries continue to be performed within NASA into the
21st century (even in the accounts of women previously suffering from such narrow identity prescriptions), the enduring passion and skill with
which many women invested themselves in spaceflight subverts many gender essentialisms, not least the premise that womanly and manly
desires can only be understood through a neat heterosexual matrix of oppositions (Butler, 1990). Indeed, as Butler (2004) suggests, it is
inaccurate to equate any measure of institutional identity with either strictly masculine or feminine identities, values or behaviours. Rather we
should describe the ongoing dis/organization of normative gender practices and foreground those moments – as Carolyn Huntoon’s account
might example – when the easy mapping of concepts of gender and sexual difference onto organizational and technical efficacy becomes
problematic. The next section develops this line of thinking about transgressive desires and bodily competences by attending to a set of bodies
that offered potentialities to throw into relief perhaps one of the most popularly understood ‘masculine’ technical environments: the spacecraft.]
Gender is socially constructed – The binary opposition between male and female requires social practices and
behaviors that reproduce gender oppression
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[In contrast to a diverse group of feminist theorists, including Simone de Beau- voir, Kate Millett, Marilyn Frye or Barbara Duden, Butler
rejects the idea that feminist epistemology and politics should or can differentiate a priori between identities, experiences, values or
behaviours based on sexual difference (see Butler, 2004: 210–213).2 Her critique of the universalism associated with feminist theory
echoes some other scholars, including Julia Kristeva, Helene Cixous and Luce Irigaray. Butler (1990), however, goes further than
multiplying the category ‘Woman’, and questions how gender/sexual differences are performed thorough a ‘heterosexual matrix’: ‘The
heterosexualization of desire requires and institutes the production of discrete and asymmetrical oppositions between “feminine” and
“masculine” where these are understood as excessive attributes of “male” and “female”.’ (p. 24). She continues: ‘. . . one is one’s gender to
the extent that one is not the other gender, a formulation that presupposes and enforces the restriction of gender within the binary pair’
(p.30). Consequently, if gender is produced through binary oppositions then, for Butler, the ‘us’/‘them’ of ‘masculine’/‘feminine’ becomes
unintelligible outside of these discursive practices and desires. As Butler (1990) puts it, ‘There is no gender identity behind the expression
of gender, that identity is performatively constituted by the very “expressions” that are said to be its results’ (p. 41).]
Deconstructing sex and gender is necessary to break down institutional sex oppression
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[Importantly, Butler explains we should not abandon interest in the norma- tive expressions of male/female binaries per se, rather we must
be careful to view such ‘choices’ as repeated stylized acts regulated by regimes of truth (or dis- courses) and operationalized within
institutions from the welfare state, modern medicine and perhaps also spaceflight, not part of any natural order of things (compare with
Holmes, 2007; Parker, 2002). ‘To conflate the definition of gender with its normative expression is inadvertently to reconsolidate the
power of the norm to constrain the definition of gender’ (Butler, 2004: 42). And so, while ‘Gender is the mechanism by which notions of
masculine and feminine are produced and naturalized . . . gender may very well be the apparatus by which such terms are deconstructed
and denaturalized’ (Butler, 2004: 42). Cru- cially for Butler, the contingency and transformability of gendering binaries becomes most
evident in those situations when we feel unsure of the authenticity of a gender act, hence ‘Gender Trouble’ (Butler, 1990). Butler’s work
has been of particular relevance to studies of transgender and homosexual cultures that accentuate the phantasmic construction of gender,
by separating gender and biological sex, and thus challenging dominant regimes of truth around gender (see Parker, 2002: 152). Yet Butler
(2004) argues that all gendered identities can be witnessed as phantasmic, because these ‘abstract norms’ always ‘exceed the lives they
make – and break’ (p. 56). Butler’s passion for the mutability of authentic/fictional gender acts bleeds into her broader political strategy
(Parker, 2002) as she seeks to concurrently describe and challenge the disciplining of modern beings through powerful regimes of truth
and afford us more creativity to become (Butler, 2004: 175).]
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Critical – Discourse Key to NASA Discrimination
Examination of discourse and the alliances between language and institutional power is key to understanding the
history of discrimination against women in NASA.
Lathers, Professor of Humanities and French, 09 (Marie Lathers, PhD from Brown University, Professor of Humanities and French, and
specializes in Feminist theory, spring 2009, 35, no. 1, “‘No Official Requirement’: Women, History, Time, and the U.S. Space Program”, Feminist Studies,
14-40 pg.) TWP
[IN JULY 1962, a special subcommittee of the U.S. House of Representatives was convened to determine whether there was gender discrimination in the
National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) establishment of qualifications for astronauts. One member stated that the committee's work
was to "once and for all settle this problem about women astronauts."( n1) The problem was settled by one witness with the statement quoted above:
there was no discrimination, he argued; there were just no women who qualified for the program. Yet the hearings offered more than this simplistic
approach to the problem. A careful reading of the transcripts reveals an alliance between language and institutional power made visible through rhetorical
strategies used by committee members and witnesses. Specific terms foregrounded in the debate were molded by one side or the other to make its case,
to reinforce or contest historical realities. These included broad categories of time and history as well as terms more particular to the hearings, including
experience and engineering, interruption and interference, and qualifications and requirements.]
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Interplanet Jerrie
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Critical – Gender, Identity and Risk
The masculine self-identity associates itself with risks; women astronauts de-stabilize this image
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[The masculine self-identity of pilots has often been understood through an eroticized desire for risk and suffering, or what Law
(2002) terms ‘Thrills and spills’ (p. 32). Similarly, McCurdy (1993), quotes one Apollo astronaut as saying, ‘Recognition of risk is
what made us as good as we were’ (p. 62), while another states ‘But if it [risk of death] was like, one in one hundred, you would do
it, you take it . . . There were so many ways it could happen’ (p. 63). Across such statements astronauts’ fetishized tolerance of risk
as a part of the performance of manliness; risk became part of the astronauts’ identity, contributing to what Tom Wolfe’s novel
(1979) famously referred to as ‘The Right Stuff’. Yet this attitude towards physical and mental subjugation was not mere blind
masochism; it was, also predicated upon a set of techniques concerned with the control of bodies wherein the astronauts were
rigorously tested to confirm a high degree of corporeal control and calculation over their own bodies and perform tasks in this
hostile environment – to maintain control in a situation despite the discomfort and vulnerability and get the job done. Within all
these images of the astronaut there exist mutually shaping essentializing associations between masculinity, corporeality, outer
space, risk and high-technology that prefigure the identity construction of ‘The Right Stuff’; becoming increasingly evident when
challenged with transgressive Other(s), namely female bodies.6 Such an instance occurred in 1962, when a small group of women
successfully passed the some of same physical and psychological tests as the Mercury astronauts, in a privately funded women
astronaut study organized by a physiologist called Dr. William Lovelace (see Shayler and Moule, 2003; Weitekamp, 2004). The
women now sought NASA’s support to become astronauts. ‘Lovelace’s Women in Space Project’ (Weitekamp, 2004) or ‘The
Mercury 13’ (Ackmann, 2004) de-stabilized many of the iterative bodily performances enacted through NASA that prescribed
binary gendered assumptions.7 The desire of these women to become astronauts and their embodied suitability, transgressed the
tacitly masculinist spatio-temporal categorization of different bodies under modernity (Massey, 2005: 93). These bodies offered, in
Judith Butler’s (1990) terms, a sense of hope ‘in the possibility of a failure to repeat, a de-formity, or a parodic repetition that
exposes the phantasmatic effect of abiding identity as a politically tenuous construction’ (p. 192). Just as some homosexual bodily
performances may present a particular body in an opposing gender role (see Butler, 1990: 167–170), thus exposing the destabilized ‘ground’ of both gendered identities, these astronauts tacitly desired to place a female body in a hegemonically
masculine guise. Yet equally, as Butler (1990) makes clear, such transgressions, while sometimes transformative, are frequently
accompanied by ‘punishments that attend not agreeing to believe in them’ (p. 190). For example, in 1962 Dr. Lovelace sought the
Navy’s permission to expand his use of their facilities to provide further evidence of the women’s suitability. The official reply to
the Navy was that ‘NASA does not at this time have a requirement for such a program’ (Weitekamp, 2004: 128). This reply was
then made known to Dr. Lovelace and the women involved; it effectively cancelled the nascent woman into space project. Here, the
twin spectres of technological determinism and instrumentalism (Feenberg, 1999) are used to conjure up a belief in value-neutral,
automatic and unilateral technical decision-making. In turn, this meant that the space programme could be constructed as if it
were an inevitable temporal sequence, expressing natural gender roles and bodily practices, and devoid of ethno-political import
(Shayler and Moule, 2003).]
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Interplanet Jerrie
SNFI 2011
[The 1.0 Release
Sophomore Scholars
Critical – Gender, Identity and Risk
Women astronauts threatened the perception that risk was inherently masculine
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[The decision was re-examined in a heated Congressional hearing in July 1962, in which the Lovelace Women, led by Geraldine
‘Jerrie’ Cobb, were crossexamined by Congressmen partly in an attempt to illustrate their technical worth objectively, above and
beyond their male peers (Shayler and Moule, 2003, p. 149). The women demonstrated the capacity of their bodies to pass the same
flight-tests as men, as well as possessing some important advantages, not least their requirements for less food and oxygen – on
account of their smaller size (Penley, 1997: 55). Ultimately, however, the women’s transgressive bodily desires were blocked
through quasi-judicial significations of risk. Namely, a belief asserted by NASA that astronauts had to be jet test pilots, a profession
women were already barred from, because only jet test pilots possessed the necessary experience to undertake high-risk flight
experiments. This point appeared already undermined by NASA’s own demonstration that spacecraft could fly automatically in
outer space (Penley, 1997), combined with the rejection of many skilled test pilots by the astronaut selectors, such as Chuck
Yeager. NASA’s Chief of Manned Space Flight, George Low, then explained to Congress how NASA support for the women-in-space
project would set his work back, despite the fact that Lovelace had requested the very limited use of Navy not NASA facilities
(Ackmann, 2004: 166). More implicitly, it appears the decision revolved around a belief that women were excluded from becoming
jet test pilots (or astronauts) because it was deemed too risky (Weitekamp, 2004: 149). In this case, a masculinized relationship
between technology and risk within American modernity proved intractable; accordingly men were able to dictate thresholds of
female risk. As Weitekamp (2004) explains, the male construction of female risk prevalent in NASA was two-fold: on the one hand,
NASA seemed reluctant to subject women to degrees of risk because ‘the prospect of subjecting a woman to mortal danger
betrayed the rigidly defined gendered roles asserted in post-war America’ (p. 3). On the other hand, this paternalist designation of
women as needing protecting might itself lead the public to conclude that if women flew in spacecraft then the craft themselves
might be deemed too straightforward and safe. Thus as Weitekamp (2004) puts it, if ‘a woman could perform those tasks [it]
would diminish their prestige’ (p. 3). The appropriation within NASA of risk as the legitimate means by which to exclude women
from outer space appears only strengthened through its seemingly contradictory blending of different masculine identities. In this
case, risk is alternately, and seemingly paradoxically, constructed as both a cipher for the rational management of hazards and the
manly celebration of danger. Here the capacity to render masculinity fractionally coherent (Law, 2002) renders it more, not less,
persistent in justifying patriarchal norms. The Mercury astronaut John Glenn, who had just returned back to Earth to a ticker-tape
parade after being the first American to orbit the Earth, summarized his verdict in a final statement within the hearing: I think this
gets back to the way our social order is organized really. It is just a fact. The men go off and fight the wars and fly airplanes and come back and
help design and build and test them. The fact that women are not in this field is a fact of our social order. It may be undesirable (quoted in
Weitekamp, 2004: 151). While Glenn’s reference to ‘undesirable’ may be telling of shifting attitudes towards women, he nevertheless
asserts that there is something inherently masculine about these interactions between bodies, risk and technology, so that only
particular bodies were deemed not just more desirable but almost factually suitable. After the hearing, female astronauts were
frequently the subject of further derision, often evoking the ‘heterosexual matrix’ of submissive female sexuality, as Wernher von
Braun demonstrated in a speech given at Mississippi State College (19 Nov. 1962): Well, all I can say is that the male astronauts are all
for it. And as my best friend Bob Gilruth [director of Johnston Space Center of manned spaceflight] says, we’re reserving 110 pounds of payload
for recreational equipment (from Parade Magazine Sunday Supplement, December 1962 – quoted in Kevles, 2003: 4).]
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NASA’s policy extends beyond space and into society
Policy change in NASA will lead to a change in attitude towards female astronauts
John ‘04 ,former employee of NASA headquarters office of physical and biological research and co-designer of the Mars Rover, current employee of
the space operations mission directorate at NASA (2004 volume 11, “NASA: Making Space for Women” murj Page 19). TB KR LI
If the policy is incorporated into NASA's Office of Biological and Physical research, and possibly into NASA in general, it is important to understand the implications
such a policy would have. The immediate effects of the policy would be on the staff of the Office of Biological and Physical Research, who would need to learn about and
understand the pol- icy as well as monitor compliance. Time may be required to set up a database and to evaluate how well NASA's policy is working. Also affected would
be the principal investigators who would need to begin recruiting and retaining women test subjects as well as compiling analysis with respect to sex/gender. Initial fears
that this measure could increase the cost of research have been dispelled; since the NIH policy has been implemented at NASA, there has been no reported increase in
cost. Recruitment has been an issue, particularly when research is to be done on astronauts, since women only make up 20% of the astronaut corps. There is also the risk
of more variability in research. The policy is also expected to increase the safety of women astronauts, who will be able to be sure that the countermeasures and health
care solutions will surely work on them as well as on men. The increased understanding of women in space would likely be extended to knowledge about the health of
women on Earth. It is very likely that women in the general population would benefit from research done by NASA. NASA's adoption of this policy may improve its image.
A policy that is somewhat progressive, especially since it would be done without a mandate, may lead many to appreciate NASA's apparent focus on safety and equality.
Perhaps the policy could be extended to include hard- ware, and many women astronauts would benefit from items such as well-fitting space suits that allow for opti- mal
productivity. This increased productivity could help NASA become more efficient. A small suit would also allow more women to participate in research studies, increasing
the value of the inclusion policy. Once this policy is in place, it could help to change the attitude towards women at NASA in general, drawing attention to the importance of
sex/gender equality even in areas beyond research. A more woman-friendly atti- tude at NASA could lead to more women applicants and more women working in the
NASA centers and the astro- naut corps. The policy of inclusion of women in NASA-funded human research will have far-reaching effects on all of NASA. Not only will the
Office of Biological and Physical research be affected, but all of NASA and perhaps the entire world.
E
The exclusion of women from the astronaut corps was crucial to the exclusion of all other minority groups.
Shinabery 10- Education specialist and Humanities Scholar with the New Mexico Museum of Space History (Michael, October 31,
Alamogordo Daily News, “This Week in Space History: Lyndon Johnson Grounds the Mercury 13,” Lexis-Nexis.
[The website said Vice President Lyndon Johnson killed the program. Cobb, in a 2007 interview, recalled meeting with him. "Jerrie," she
recollected he said, "If we let you or other women into the space program, we'd have to let blacks in. We'd have to let Mexican Americans
in, and Chinese Americans. We'd have to let every minority in, and we just can't do it."]
Sexism in NASA has caused it to halt progress on women’s space suit
John ‘04 ,former employee of NASA headquarters office of physical and biological research and co-designer of the Mars Rover, current employee of
the space operations mission directorate at NASA (2004 volume 11, “NASA: Making Space for Women” murj Page 19). TB KR LI
[Despite efforts made by NASA, there have been some setbacks. NASA halted work on a $16 million program to develop a space suit designed for smaller women.
Officials said they could not afford the $9 million needed to complete work on the new, smaller suit and that only a small proportion of women astronauts would be
affected. The suit would have increased the total per- centage of women astronauts accommodated from 60% to 95%, while also benefiting smaller men. NASA calls the
decision a “deferral” rather than a cancellation.35 It should be noted, however, that the statistics dealing with the issue are controversial.
In the most recently selected group of eleven astro- nauts, two of them were women. While this may seem low, it is representative of the applications. Women sent in
556 of the 2882 applications received by NASA and 22 of the 99 candidates NASA chose to interview.36]
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Government Complicit in Stopping Women Astronauts
Women were forcibly kept from the space program by not only a scandal, but a blatant discriminatory Congress
The Globe and Mail (Canada) 10/12/2002 (Stephanie Nolen, October 12, 2002, “One Giant Leap Backwards; Women astronauts such
as Canada’s Roberta Bondar are now a familiar sight. But in the early 1960s, a forgotten corps, of extraordinary U.S. ‘astronettes’ passed
torturous tests and training with flying colours-only to see a sexist society snatch their dream away. Today, The Globe’s STEPHANIE
NOLEN exposes the long-secret scandal that inspired her new book” FOCUS; Pg. F1. BR BB)
<Ms. Cochran had testified to Congress before: In 1943 she defended her WASPs, when critics alleged, among other things, that it was a
waste to train them to fly since they just went off and got married anyhow. But now she invoked the exact argument she had once fought:
"You are going to have to, of necessity, waste a great deal of money when you take a large group of women in, because you lose them
through marriage." A few committee members bridled, noting that this argument would bar women from all the professions - and that all
the male astronauts were married with children. "They didn't have [the babies]," Ms. Cochran snapped back. As the committee prepared to
break up for the day, she leaned forward with one last comment. "Even if we are second in getting a woman into the new environment,"
said the greatest female pilot in the country to the members of Congress, "it's better than to take a chance on having women fall flat on
their faces." The next day it got worse. Now it was NASA's turn at the witness table, and the space agency had sent its stars, Scott
Carpenter and John Glenn - the nation's hero, who had made his orbital flight five months before and finally given the United States an
unblemished achievement in space. The galleries were packed with representatives and senators who had come to hear the astronauts.
First, NASA's director of Spacecraft and Flight Missions outlined the criteria the agency was using to select astronauts. Then, Col. Glenn
smoothly assured the committee that NASA had plenty of astronauts; they weren't looking for more. "But if we can find any women that
demonstrate that they have better qualifications for going into a program than we have going into that program, we would welcome them
with open arms," he added. The committee members dissolved in laughter, and he played it up. "For the purpose of my going home this
afternoon, I think that should be stricken from the record." The astronauts and the politicians went back and forth over the issue of
whether the women should be given a chance to prove themselves in jets or simulators, before Col. Glenn leaned forward and neatly put
into words what most of those in the room had been thinking - and closed the debate on female astronauts in the United States for 20 years.
"I think this gets back to the way our social order is organized, really. It is just a fact. The men go off and fight the wars and fly the
airplanes and come back and help design and build and test them. The fact that women are not in this field is a fact of our social order."
None of the FLATs ever got to space. Though they could not know it, some of the most powerful people in the country were secretly
working against them. Lyndon Johnson personally killed off any last hope of their joining the space program, only months before he
pushed into law the Civil Rights Act making it illegal to discriminate on the basis of gender. Nobody in the United States saw any glory in
having the most prestigious of American jobs being carried out by a girl with a ponytail. The women themselves never knew the true story
behind Jackie Cochran's deception. And so the Soviets also won this space race, by 20 years, launching cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova
in June, 1963.>
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Science and the Space Industry are Patriarchal
The science field is still dominated by men who are paid higher average wages than women, and
work in better conditions.
Stark 2008 JD Harvard, PHD Chem, Scripps (Lucy, Winter 2008, Harvard Journal of Law and Gender, EXPOSING HOSTILE ENVIRONMENTS FOR
FEMALE GRADUATE STUDENTS IN ACADEMIC SCIENCE LABORATORIES, 31 Harv. J.L. & Gender 101)
The 1999 MIT Report on the Status of Women Faculty in Science documented disparate treatment of female professors (who, in 1994, constituted [*103]
8% of the School of Science faculty) based on a variety of quantifiers, ranging from unequal allotments of laboratory space to lower salaries to fewer
funding opportunities. n3 Studies on the status of women faculty at other prominent institutions followed in the wake of these initial findings. n4 Further,
the heads of nine universities convened at a meeting in 2001 to discuss methods to address persisting barriers faced by women faculty in science and
engineering. n5 These institutional studies did not merely "collect dust" in file cabinets; n6 gratifyingly, they had concrete and positive ramifications for
many female faculty members, both at MIT and elsewhere. For example, Hopkins reported that "she and other senior female scientists [at MIT now] have
laboratories and salaries equivalent to those of their male colleagues." n7
This paper addresses the underrepresentation of women in the sciences and challenges some commonly held beliefs about the reasons for their low
numbers. Despite the MIT Report, there continues to be a perception, even among those who do not subscribe to an innate-aptitude explanation for the
low percentages of women in science, n8 that the bulk of the disparity is due to [*104] work-family (im)balance issues that fall disproportionately on
women. n9 Yet this assessment inopportunely overlooks a remarkable fact that came out of the MIT Report, namely that the main instigator of the MIT
study, Nancy Hopkins, encountered sex discrimination, notwithstanding the fact that she did not have children. She had initially believed sex
discrimination in the academy only happened to women with childrearing responsibilities: "She had faith that science would be the great equalizer... . 'I
just thought, "Who cares? As long as I can do a great experiment, who cares?'" Divorced and with no children, she burrowed into her science." n10
However, after she and her colleagues "chronicled what top administrators called a convincing pattern" of sex discrimination at MIT, Hopkins was
dismayed to realize that "this was despite sacrifices the women had made for science: Fewer women than men were married and the women had fewer
children than the national average, while for men it was the same." n11
Further, among gender equity advocates, it is often thought that any gender discrimination in the sciences is of the "second-order" variety--unconscious,
subtle biases on the part of both men and women that are not immediately obvious to either victim or perpetrator--rather than overt and intentionally
hostile discrimination. n12 However, as will be discussed below, overt and intentionally hostile environments have not wholly given way to more subtly
insidious behavior and indeed have not gone out of fashion in many scientific laboratories.
The Space industry is dominated by white males who are epitomized as being the “ideal astronaut” and therefore, the
ideal American
The Globe and Mail (Canada) 10/12/2002 (Stephanie Nolen, October 12, 2002, “One Giant Leap Backwards; Women astronauts such
as Canada’s Roberta Bondar are now a familiar sight. But in the early 1960s, a forgotten corps, of extraordinary U.S. ‘astronettes’ passed
torturous tests and training with flying colours-only to see a sexist society snatch their dream away. Today, The Globe’s STEPHANIE
NOLEN exposes the long-secret scandal that inspired her new book” FOCUS; Pg. F1. BR BB)
<The men of the Mercury program were all white Protestants from small towns, married with children. Four were named for their fathers;
three were military-college graduates. This, America was told, was what an astronaut looked like. The country swooned at the image of
laconic bravery, and pinned its space hopes on seven pairs of broad shoulders. Dr. Lovelace sat up on the dais with them and described
their testing ordeals.>
Working in a Patriarchal environment creates a patriarchal mindset – John Glenn Proves
Dallas Morning News 9/20/1998 (Michael Precker, September 20, 1998, “Returning to Sensitive Territory” TODAY; Pg. 6F. Lexis
Nexis. VP CC)
<But in an interview with Dateline NBC several years ago, Mr. Glenn was asked about his 1962 comments.
"I wasn't saying I advocated it," he said. "I was saying what existed."
Then he was asked whether NASA had made the right decision.
"In my case, yes," he replied with a laugh.>
Dallas Morning News 9/20/1998 (Michael Precker, September 20, 1998, “Returning to Sensitive Territory” TODAY: Pg. 6F. Lexis
Nexis. VP CC)
<Ms. Cobb, now 67 and watching from the sidelines as the 77-year-old senator prepares for his mission, once again is trying to persuade
NASA to include her on a space flight. She met Mr. Glenn last month and asked for his support.
"He greeted me as an old friend," she says. "He was as nice and friendly as he could be, and I told him I was very happy for him."
But what about an endorsement?
"He sort of didn't say anything," Ms. Cobb says. "I suppose he really can't because he's involved with NASA."
She says she understands.
"I hold nothing against John," she says. "He's just from the old school where women stay home and keep house.">
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Solvency – Study Women’s Health in Space
***Scientific studies of gender in space will yield massive benefits for future space missions***
Oberg, Spaceflight Engineer, 99 (March 5, 1999, Alcestis, Spaceflight Engineer, The Washington Times, “One Giant Leap for
Womankind”)
No real gender-specific science has ever been done on NASA astronauts. It is possible to extrapolate male/female differences from the
general medical data collected on most flights - to compare, for instance, the rate of bone decalcification in the male versus female
astronauts. But NASA managers have traditionally rejected gender-specific studies: It might detract from the image of androgynous
equality the space agency was trying to promote, and might turn up scientific results with political implications. What if women were
immune to space motion sickness and only women could safely pilot the shuttles? Or what if women were more susceptible to the bends
and never become spacewalkers?And the first female astronauts were none too excited about gender-specific research either. They fought
long and hard to be included in the all-boys astronaut club, and considered themselves to be professional astronauts first, women
afterward. Studies focusing on female physiology might demean their long, continuing struggle for equality. And if some frailty were
found in one individual, one former astronaut pointed out, it might be used unfairly as grounds to disqualify all females from certain duties
and opportunities. However, if NASA has the courage now to admit that women and men are physiologically different, an all-woman
flight might offer scientists a new start. Scientist Millie Hughes-Fulford - who flew on Spacelab SLS 1 in 1991 and is now deputy
associate chief of staff for the San Francisco VA Hospital -thinks there is a great deal of science that could be done on an all-female flight:
I'd like to see complete urine analyzes and bone scans on them, to measure calcium loss and compare that to data we already have. I'd like
to know their hormone levels, and check for differences in their menstrual cycles in space versus on the ground. It would be interesting to
know how women stay on task versus men, and look at cognitive responses over time, using computer-generated tests and games.
To make sense scientifically, studies of women's health must be carried out with real dedication throughout all future NASA flights especially on a long-duration space-station mission where ignorance of female health issues might endanger the health of the women
crewmates. For instance, bone-decalcification rates in menopausal and post-menopausal women astronauts should be closely monitored
since they might be more vulnerable to osteoporosis in space as they are on earth. It would be important to measure hormonal and
metabolic changes in younger women to gauge if there is any impact to their reproductive health after a long-term flight; data suggest there
might be a problem for the men. And because pioneer women of the West formed very different types of social-support networks from the
men 100 years ago, psychologists might want to learn more about frontier psychological dynamics by studying women crews on space
stations.
Studying women in space can improve healthcare.
Ahuja 99 (Anjana Ahuja, April 17, 1999, “Women, the final frontier,” The Times, Lexis Nexis, TJB)
It was a bitter opening chapter in the story of women in space. But how the tables have turned. Last month Dan Goldin, Nasa's top man,
let slip that the first all-women shuttle mission crew was under consideration. It could be ready for lift-off in three years' time. Dr Arnauld
Nicogossian, who heads life sciences research at Nasa HQ in Washington, explains that the mission may help medical research. "We are
studying if we should accelerate the process of getting more women flying in space," he says. "We want to improve the healthcare we
deliver to men and women astronauts and this might include a dedicated life sciences mission which might or might not be all-female. "We
are still evaluating whether there are gender issues we need to address, and one of the questions is whether we need to do a study in space just on women. At the moment,
mission 107 could potentially be dedicated to studying this topic but no decision has been made yet." There have been 88 shuttle missions so far; the 107th shuttle excursion
is likely to take place around 2001. There could never be a better time for Nasa finally to discard its suffocatingly macho image. Twenty-nine of Nasa's 119 astronauts are
women, of whom four are qualified to pilot the Space Shuttle. Lt-Col Eileen Collins, a military pilot, will become the first woman to command a shuttle mission when she
flies in July. The record for the longest stint in space by an American is held by a woman, Shannon Lucid, who lived aboard the Mir Space Station for 188 days. She may
have been jokingly offered an apron by her Russian colleagues when she arrived on board but she became a national icon. By backing a woman-only crew, the agency could
finally crush the idea that it, and its male heroes, have treated its women pioneers shoddily. When women broke into the astronaut corps in 1978, it sent hairy-chested
journalists into a cliche frenzy. "Meet the real-life wonder women of the world," screamed the Daily Express in 1979. "Blonde, brunette, sexy girls who can make blue
overalls look as if they are fashioned by Cardin but whose minds have the instant response of an IBM computer." They were rarely referred to as astronauts; "astrodames",
"astronettes" and even "capsule cuties" were favoured alternatives. It is not surprising that it took until 1983 for Sally Ride, America's first woman in space, to plant the flag
of feminism at the final frontier.
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Solvency – All-Female Crew
An all-female crew would allow for research on bone loss which is key to future Mars colonization
Dunn, 99 (5/29/99, Marcia Dunn, The Advertiser, “More Space for Gender Issue,” LexisNexis) TWP
<< NASA is looking to all-women crews for a greater understanding of the effects on females in space. MARCIA DUNN reports.
WITHIN the next two years, NASA may be flying all-female space shuttle crews for science. With a new space station on the horizon and
increasing talk of trips to Mars, NASA wants to make sure it protects the health of all its astronauts, male and female. But, like earthbound medical research, most of what it knows has been gleaned from men, and projecting results on to women could be dangerous.
Weightlessness, for instance, is known to cause bone loss in both sexes, and because women are at greater risk of osteoporosis, theory may
suggest women in space load up on calcium. But that could create kidney stones, points out Dr Arnauld Nicogossian, the space agency's
top doctor. Other areas of concern, for both sexes, include radiation and the weakening of the immune system in weightlessness. Millie
Hughes-Fulford, a University of California professor who flew on the space shuttle in 1991, would love to see an all-female crew. As an
osteoporosis researcher, she'd be especially interested in whether women lose bone and calcium at the same rate in space as men. "That
would probably be the biggest argument against women going to Mars. 'Oh, my dear, you're getting much too close to menopause and
you're going to lose all that bone when you're gone'," she says.>>
***Sending an all-female mission would facilitate research and pave the way for future woman
astronauts.***
The Associated Press, 99 (8/14/1999, The Associated Press, St. Louis Post-Dispatch (Missouri), “NASA CONSIDERS SHUTTLE
MISSION WITH CREW OF ALL WOMEN; SCIENTISTS HOPE TO LEARN GENDER-SPECIFIC EFFECTS,” LexisNexis) TWP
<<Come 2001, women may have an inside track in the macho world of space. Within the next two years, NASA may be flying all-female
space shuttle crews - for science.
With a new space station on the horizon and increasing talk of trips to Mars, NASA wants to make sure it protects the health of all its
astronauts, male and female. But just as with Earth-bound medical research, most of what it knows has been gleaned from men, and
projecting results onto women could be dangerous.
Weightlessness, for instance, is known to cause bone loss in both sexes, and because women are at greater risk of osteoporosis, theory
might suggest women in space load up on calcium. But that could create kidney stones, points out Dr. Arnauld Nicogossian, the space
agency's top doctor.
Other areas of concern, for both sexes, include radiation and the weakening of the immune system in weightlessness.
Millie Hughes-Fulford, a University of California professor who flew on the space shuttle in 1991, would love to see an all-female crew.
As an osteoporosis researcher, she'd be especially interested in whether women lose bone and calcium at the same rate in space as men.
"That would probably be the biggest argument against women going to Mars. 'Oh, my dear, you're getting much too close to menopause
and you're going to lose all that bone when you're gone,'" she said.
NASA is seeking multiple second opinions to determine whether more gender-specific research is needed. The study should be completed
by the end of June. After reviewing the findings, "Then we'll decide if it makes sense to have a mission dedicated specifically to fly
women and how often we have to continue that type of mission," Nicogossian said.
"It will not be a one-time deal," he promised.
It wasn't until the last few years that NASA could even consider putting together an all-female crew. Every shuttle mission requires two
pilots, and NASA only recently added its second and third female shuttle pilots. The 119 current astronauts include 29 women.
"Sooner or later it's going to happen" whether it's deliberate or not, said shuttle program director William Readdy.
Men have dominated space flight - and consequently space medical research - since Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin opened the frontier 38
years ago this Monday.
Of the 278 people who have flown on U.S. spacecraft since Alan Shepard's 15-minute hop on May 5, 1961, only 31 have been women.
This official roster excludes Christa McAuliffe and the two other rookies who were killed aboard Challenger.
Women were not admitted to NASA's astronaut corps until 1978 and did not fly on a space shuttle until 1983. No woman piloted a shuttle
until 1995. And women will not command a shuttle flight until Eileen Collins takes the left front seat aboard Columbia in July.
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Solvency – All-Female Crew
An all-female mission would be a step towards annihilating sexism in NASA as long as it isn’t a publicity
stunt.
Oberg, Spaceflight Engineer, 99 (March 5, 1999, Alcestis, Spaceflight Engineer, The Washington Times, “One Giant Leap for
Womankind”)
On the other hand, although women have worked in the space program for nearly 40 years and there have been female astronauts since
1978, women have never been appointed to any of the real power positions in NASA: NASA administrator, associate administrator for
spaceflight, space-station program manager, and the space-shuttle program manager. There are eight major NASA centers, and there has
only been one female center director in NASA's history. If the flight of an all-female crew could extract some long-term commitment from
NASA to studying women's health in space and to promoting women into the uppermost decision-making positions in the agency, then it
would be worth some public applause. But it would be monstrous if the great professionalism of these women were relegated to some
meaningless political sideshow. In essence, it would be terrible if an all-female flight were like the John Glenn flight - full of sound and
fury, signifying nothing.
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Interplanet Jerrie
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Solvency - NASA Key
NASA has been a lynch pin for the Gendering of American modernity – Key space to transform oppressive gender
practices
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[Arguably, the American space programme, especially during and before the Apollo-era, perhaps presents a rather strange association with Butler’s
thesis – ostensibly it is permeated with repetitive gender acts where ‘authentically’ masculine men are opposed to feminine women, and has become
somewhat of a leitmotif for the gendering of American modernity (Penley, 1997; Weitekamp, 2004). In many respects, however, such labelling only fuels
the intellectual and political exigency for a more nuanced interrogation of some of the historical gendering practices surrounding space flight. Butler’s
approach provides a useful frame in which a historical, largely text-based, analysis of gender can mitigate a tendency to assume a priori the coherence of
essentialist gender roles. My decision to focus here primarily upon encounters between women and NASA develops Butler’s (1990) position that the
category ‘woman’ articulates a conceptual fracturing of subjectivity – a fluid becoming not a fixed being (Grosz, 1994): women, as Butler (2004: 204–229)
describes, are historically both inside and outside a politics based on group-recognition and representation.3 Encounters between women and NASA can
simultaneously expose and transform normative gender practices, disclosing the phantasmagoric de/construc- tion of femininities and masculinities.
Having introduced this performative approach, I will now turn towards three genderings within and surrounding NASA: (i) astronauts’ wives, (ii) women
working within NASA and (iii) female astronauts.]
NASA is a significant space to engage in gender transgression by questioning male dominated institutions
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
This reading of the experiences of women within NASA illustrates the sacrifice
and cost for women who failed to repeat a recognizable gendered identity,
yet perhaps equally it provides a great deal of potentiality to rethink the prevalent
reading of NASA, particularly during the Apollo era, as an uncontested
masculinist realm. As Judith Butler (1990) maintains, gendered identities must
be constantly performed, hence are capable of being otherwise. While the
accounts of Carolyn Huntoon testify how NASA, and in particular the human
spaceflight programme, continues to remain a male-dominated institution it is
perhaps encouraging to note here the many embodied examples – from Dotty
Duke’s lawn-mowing to female rocket trajectory programmers and Geraldine
Cobb’s ‘expert’ body – where binary categorization, prejudice and discrimination
only fuelled, and indeed frequently necessitated, transgression of prescriptive
and oppressive gendered identities.
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Politics – Plan Helps Obama
Doing the Plan will help get Obama re-elected. Empirics prove.
Oberg, Spaceflight Engineer, 99 (March 5, 1999, Alcestis, Spaceflight Engineer, The Washington Times, “One Giant Leap for
Womankind”)
NASA chiefs were so pleased with the great publicity surrounding John Glenn's flight, they have come up with the bright idea of flying an
all-woman shuttle crew as a public-relations follow-up. Sources inside the agency say the most likely flight for an all-female crew would
be a science mission around the time of the 2000 election - just when the administration's "point man" for U.S. space policy, Vice
President Gore, would be seeking the presidency.The feasibility of this proposal is being assessed right now within NASA. A report is
circulating within the agency, weighing the pros and cons of such a flight. A final decision would have to be made by NASA
headquarters, no later than this summer. It is difficult for me as a woman not to be offended at the exploitation of these highly professional
women astronauts as a publicity sideshow. Furthermore, it is breathtakingly improper for America's space program to be used to work
public relations for one candidate and political party at election time - an affront to American taxpayers who might not want the dream of
space reduced to a Democratic Party campaign contribution.However, if NASA were to launch an all-woman crew after the election and
detach it from partisan politics, then the gesture might be useful both scientifically and symbolically.
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NEG - NASA no longer sexist
NASA is making efforts to erase its sexist past and integrate women
Right Vision News, 11(Right Vision News, “NASA Celebrates Trailblazers During Women's History Month Event”, March 18, 2011)
Washington, March 18 -- NASA has issued following press release: NASA's women took the spotlight Wednesday in a Women's History Month event
showcasing their achievements in aeronautics and space exploration initiatives. The event gave students a chance to interact with an astronaut and other
women working in science and technology careers. NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver hosted the event for an audience of approximately 200
elementary through high school-level students from the Washington area. "Women have made tremendous contributions to NASA over the years," she
said. "They've been astronauts, scientists, engineers, program managers and served in many other capacities. We have an obligation to reach out to the
next generation and inspire today's girls to pursue science and technology careers. Expanding opportunities in these fields will give perspectives and
expertise to win the future." During the event, NASA announced the creation of a new website that features women in NASA careers telling their stories in
their own words. The website has 32 video interviews with women of diverse backgrounds who represent different aspects of the agency's work. Subjects
include Garver, astronauts, engineers and scientists. They discuss their accomplishments and offer encouragement to women and girls considering
technical careers so they can become the trailblazers of tomorrow. The site also provides information about NASA internships and career opportunities.
In 2010 a new record of three was set for most women in space at a time.
The Guardian, 10, (4/6/2010, Marcia Dunn, The Guardian, “Mission Accomplished NASA Women Set Record,” The Guardian, Final Edition: Section
Guardian International, Page 16. LexisNexis) TWP
The space shuttle Discovery rocketed into orbit yesterday on one of Nasa's final stockpiling missions to the International Space Station. The launch - the
last scheduled one in darkness for Nasa's fading shuttle programme - helped set a record for the most women in space at the same time. Three women
were on board Discovery as part of the seven-member crew, and another is already at the space station. The shuttle should arrive at the orbiting outpost
tomorrow.>> But problems with Discovery's main antenna, which emerged as soon as the shuttle reached orbit, could affect the radar needed for the
rendezvous, Mission Control said yesterday. A spokesman stressed there were other tools to work around the situation. "We probably won't have
answers for you today about what this means," Mission Control told the astronauts. The six space station residents gathered around the dinner table to
watch the launch on a laptop. "We are absolutely delighted to have our friendly comrades joining us here in a couple of days," said Timothy Creamer.
"Stand by for a knock on the door," Mission Control radioed.
Despite initial gender discrimination there is an intensifying change toward the gender neutralization of outer space
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel,
“Giant leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
Eventually in 1983, over thirty years after the Lovelace women’s plight, Sally Ride would become the first American female astronaut to fly into space
(Penley, 1997: 55); though not until Eileen Collins in 1999, over 40 years since its founding that NASA would give a woman the opportunity of
commanding a spacecraft (p. 13).9 As Kevles (2003) optimistically puts it, ‘women can now decide risks for themselves’ (p. 56). Today many more
women are entering science and engineering disciplines and training to be pilots. Even so, only 10 per cent of astronauts being selected are women, as
Carolyn Huntoon reports. Perhaps the institutionalized desire to uphold this assemblage of American modernity as a male domain is changing, albeit
slowly.
Although NASA appears sexist in the press, women are fairly treated.
Daily News, 98 (3/12/98,Dominguez, Robert, Daily News Staff Writer, Daily News (New York), “LAUNCH LADY SPACE SHUTTLE COMMANDER
EILEEN COLLINS IS A WOMAN WITH A MISSION,” LexisNexis—Air Force Lt. Eileen Collins) TWP
But when asked about whether she experienced sexual discrimination at the Air Force or NASA, Collins doesn't veer from the company line. "The stories
you hear are usually pretty bad, but there are good things and fair things that don't come out in the press. If I look at my life in particular, some things that
happened were so small they are not even worth mentioning.
"Maybe some people thought I was getting special treatment. But I have been treated fairly and I am extremely happy in the way the Air Force gave me
opportunities throughout my career."
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NEG - Equal opportunities for women at NASA
As more women go into space, the opportunity for others opens up in the future
Daily News, 98 (3/12/98,Dominguez, Robert, Daily News Staff Writer, Daily News (New York), “LAUNCH LADY SPACE SHUTTLE COMMANDER
EILEEN COLLINS IS A WOMAN WITH A MISSION,” LexisNexis—Air Force Lt. Eileen Collins) TWP
“These women set an excellent precedent and made it easy for me and the gals to follow me," says Collins. But she downplays her own role in history. "I
see this flight as just another step in opening up the future to women. I'm not focusing on my place in history. I'm just focusing on doing the job right and
on what needs to be done." A mother's experience Collins will make her historic flight in December, when she'll lead the crew of the shuttle Columbia on a
mission to launch a $ 1.4 billion X-ray telescope into space. The telescope is expected to magnify heavenly objects 100 times more than previously seen.
Commanding a mostly male crew, she says, shouldn't pose any problems. In fact, being a woman and a mom is a benefit when dealing with the myriad
personalities and personal crises that may arise when you're floating in outer space for an extended period. "Being a mother, you have an understanding
that people have family needs, people get sick, or there are conflicts at home," she says. "You're sensitive to those types of people problems." That
doesn't mean she'll be a pushover. As far as her management style goes, Collins says she is "middle of the road," somewhere between taskmaster and
laid-back. "You have to trust people, that they know their jobs and do it well. I have no problems dealing with qualified people. It's a lot different from
being a military commander and commanding here at NASA."
Women are being graded equally with men, all are being pushed to their limits
Daily News, 98 (3/12/98,Dominguez, Robert, Daily News Staff Writer, Daily News (New York), “LAUNCH LADY SPACE SHUTTLE COMMANDER
EILEEN COLLINS IS A WOMAN WITH A MISSION,” LexisNexis—Air Force Lt. Eileen Collins) TWP
Still, she knows that with all the publicity surrounding her appointment, her performance will come under intense scrutiny.
"It's my guess people will be watching both inside and outside NASA, because it's the first [woman-led flight]. I don't resent it," says Collins. "At Vance Air
Force Base, I thought we were watched very closely. We were graded equally to the men, but the effect of being watched is that I felt I had to work
harder. "But I turned it into my favor I became a better pilot, and I hope to use that same philosophy now."
Woman’s choice to have children only cause of tech industry pay disparity.
St. Louis Post, 2000 (6-5-00, Charen, Mona, St. Louis Post, “Clinton Administration is Spending Money on Problems that Don’t Exist”) RS
Take the pay gap. The Clinton administration thinks it has found new evidence of disparate pay for men and women -- this time, in the high-tech field. An
earnest number cruncher on the president's Council of Economic Advisors claims that women in the information technology field earn 12 percent less
than men after controlling for education level, age and occupation. The president has accordingly proposed to add $ 20 million to the already requested $
27 million for an Equal Pay Initiative. Now, even if this pay gap were real, anyone who thinks that spending another $ 20 million in taxpayer funds is going
to fix it is in serious need of a vacation. Twenty-million dollars is what the Department of Health and Human Services spends on Windex every year. But
the problem does not exist. As the Pacific Research Institute and the Independent Women's Forum have tirelessly explained, the pay gap between
women and men is not the result of discrimination; it is the result of choices freely made by women. Data from the National Longi tudinal Survey of Youth
show that women between the ages of 27 and 33 who are childless earn 98 percent of what men earn. The PRI adds that women in engineering and
computer science earn 99 percent of men's earnings. Where gaps begin to show up is when women choose to withdraw temporarily from the labor force
or work part-time in order to raise children.
38
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NEG - NASA females don’t want special treatment
Female astronauts oppose an all-female mission, viewing it as a gimmicky insult to their skills
The Advertiser, 99 (5/29/99, Marcia Dunn, The Advertiser, “More Space for Gender Issue,” LexisNexis) TWP
Men have dominated space flight and consequently space medical research since Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin opened the frontier 38 years ago this
Monday. Of the 278 people who have flown on US spacecraft since Alan Shepard's 15-minute hop on May 5, 1961, only 31 have been women. Women
were not admitted to NASA's astronaut corps until 1978 and did not fly on a space shuttle until 1983. No woman piloted a shuttle until 1995. And women
will not command a shuttle flight until Eileen Collins takes steps aboard Columbia in July. For now, the space station era seems to be shaping up the
same way mostly male. Of the six United States astronauts and six Russian cosmonauts training to live on the international space station, only one,
American Susan Helms, is female. And only one woman was among the seven NASA astronauts who lived on Mir. It was only because her ride home
was delayed that Shannon Lucid ended up staying six months in 1996, a record for women and for Americans of both sexes. Because they've worked so
hard to get where they are, many of NASA's women dislike the idea of all-female crews, says an agency insider. They're insulted, in fact, by anything that
smacks of gimmickry or implies their skills somehow don't measure up. Former astronaut Kathryn Thornton, one of the few women to walk in space,
wonders why NASA doesn't simply collect the scientific data by assigning more women to more space shuttle flights. "I don't know why it would be
necessary to have them all on the same flight," says Thornton, a physicist now teaching at the University of Virginia. "I would worry about the privacy
issues. Everybody would know these seven women on all these different tests. And if the issues have to deal with how the crews get along, I'd be really
upset."
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NEG – NASA Reducing Age Discrimination
NASA is moderating its exclusion of older astronauts.
The Canberra Times 7/25/05 (“So why is it? NASA connects with feminine sides and older, wiser ways in space” Section A; Page 6.
Lexis Nexis.) KT, BR, LI
THE UNITED States space shuttle may return to space this week. When I last looked, NASA's web site said that
tomorrow was the earliest possible date, but that it wanted to launch "by the end of the July window". This mission
has been delayed several times. Regardless of when it departs, it has caught my attention for a couple of reasons
connected with the crew.
First is the fact that all seven are what I would call comfortably middle-aged. The two eldest are 53, the commander
is 48 and the youngest is 40. This is quite a change from the early days of space work, and possibly related to the
general ageing of the population in much of the Western world. It is also a reassuring gesture for those of us who
find ourselves grey, wrinkled, generally bowed with age and on the scrapheap of life. NASA now seems to be
realising that experience and extensive training count for much more than sheer fitness. It also understands that the
testosterone type of toughness of the early days is not needed, and may even be a hazard.
40
Interplanet Jerrie
[The 1.0 Release
SNFI 2011
Sophomore Scholars
NEG – Criticism Not Enough, Action Necessary
A deconstructive reading of masculinity is not enough to eviscerate the multiple non-coherent masculine narratives
that allow for patriarchy within NASA – action is key
Sage, PhD, Research Associate in Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, ’09 (15 MAY 2009, Daniel, “Giant
leaps and forgotten steps: NASA and the performance of gender”, Sociological review, Vol. 57, pgs 146–163, BBB)
[The Right Stuff also highlights the performativity of masculinities within NASA. In one scene, for example, the Apollo astronauts’
challenge the rocket scientists’ desire to perfect a fully automated space capsule and call instead for a piloted spacecraft. This scene
speculates on the way contrasting hegemonic masculinities (Connell, 1995) – rational control versus heroic agency – are shift- ing and
ambiguous. However, it is important not to over-celebrate the presence of multiple shifting masculinities, or indeed their performativity.
Following Law’s (2002) concept of fractional coherence, we might argue that while these manly identities are multiple, and even
contrasting, they still added up to a non-coherent masculine discourse that was precisely able to exclude women because it could employ
multiple dominating narratives and defer its essence (compare with Connell, 2007). Or, as Law (2002) puts it: ‘the singularities of the
‘modern project’ arise from the interferences between multiplicities pro- duced in that characteristic oscillation between one and many’ (p.
143). As will be shown later in this chapter, struggle with masculine narratives that legitimate patriarchy can be rendered all the more
difficult, not easier, if that masculinity is fluid or reflectively performative, rather than singular. A deconstructive reading of masculinity is
not, as Connell (2007) illustrates, enough on its own to eviscerate patriarchies.]
41
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