Change the name of the James Webb Space Telescope

Change the name of the James Webb Space Telescope

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Mclee Kerolle started this petition to NASA and

This is a petition for NASA to change the name of the James Webb Space Telescope that is set to launch October 31, 2021. For those that don't know, the name of the most powerful and complex space telescope to ever look into spacetime is being named after a bigot. In addition to being the 2nd NASA Adminstrator, James Webb was more than complicit in purging gay indiviudals from the ranks of government agencies during the period known as the 'Lavender Scare'. James Webb did play a key role in the Apollo program and establishing scientific research as a core NASA activity. However, last year NASA made a statement saying they would stop using nicknames for space objects inspired by racism and bigotry. This stance should also apply to the given names of space objects and projects, as well as nicknames.

It is also worth mentioning that the original name of the space telescope was the 'Next Generation Space Telescope' and was renamed to the James Webb Space Telescope in 2002. It is worth mentioning this because it shows that the name can, in fact, be changed. Besides, if we're looking to name a super telescope after someone that has had an inspirational impact on the world for decades then we could easily change the name to Clark Kent Space Telescope (the alias of Superman, who has super sight and is an expert scientist). While some will correctly point out that Clark Kent is a fictional character, the same can be said about the mythological Apollo and Artemis (who both have entire space programs named after them).

Remember, this is not about diminishing James Webb's accomplishments. As Stephen Shih, NASA associate administrator for Diversity and Equal Opportunity, was quoted saying in regards to NASA examining their naming policy; this is more about the fact that "Science depends on diverse contributions, and benefits everyone, so this means we must make it inclusive.” 

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