|To the Moon“To the Moon” Speech
President John F. Kennedy at Rice University, September 12, 1962
(running time: 17:24)
In 1962, the United States was experiencing turbulent times. The strength of the economy was questionable, civil rights demonstrations in the south were commonplace, and troubles in Cuba had brought the country to the brink of war. The U.S. was in a race against the USSR for the upper-hand in space, and it was already behind.
Listen to the speech by President John F. Kennedy on the call for space exploration and answer the questions below.
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What effect do you think this speech had on public opinion toward the U.S. space program? On a scale from 0 to 100, how would you grade this speech and why?
One year and one month after he gave this speech, President Kennedy was assassinated. What effect did this have on the moon goal?
Why have humans not been back to the moon since the early 1970s?
What did the United States have to gain by completing a successful lunar mission? What were the risks involved?