Steph Curry claims moon landings were a hoax, NASA steps up to prove him wrong
One of the most pervasive conspiracy theories in the history of paranoia is the idea that NASA faked the 1963 moon landing. The theory goes that the space agency, keen to win the space race but ultimately technologically and financially unprepared to actually reach the lunar surface, decided that the best course of action was to fool the public by mocking up the whole thing. Proponents of this theory usually suggest that the government employed Space Odyssey director Stanley Kubrick to build an elaborate set and film the faked landing with actors.
Despite the wealth of evidence which proves that astronauts have landed on the moon (six times, no less) the theory has persisted since the late 1960's. A Gallup opinion poll has shown that between six percent and 20 percent of Americans believe that the landing was faked, and proponents of the theory even include some celebrities.
This week, basketball player Stephen Curry provoked controversy by suggesting that the moon landing was faked in a recent appearance on Winging It, a podcast hosted by Vince Carter, Kent Bazemore, and Annie Finberg. Curry wondered if American astronauts had visited the moon, asking, "We ever been to the moon?" before adding "They’re going to come get us. Sorry, I don’t want to start conspiracies." Curry didn't elaborate on who 'they' were.
However, NASA was quick to shut down Curry's conspiratorial thinking. NASA spokesperson Allard Beutel responded to the athlete's claims by stating: "We’d love for Mr Curry to tour the lunar lab at our Johnson Space Center in Houston, perhaps the next time the Warriors are in town to play the Rockets. We have hundreds of pounds of moon rocks stored there, and the Apollo mission control. During his visit, he can see firsthand what we did 50 years ago, as well as what we’re doing now to go back to the moon in the coming years, but this time to stay."
Indeed, the reaction on social media to Curry's conspiracy theories was pretty harsh. One Twitter user wrote: "Calling into question the greatest accomplishment in human history does such an incredible disservice to the men and women who sacrificed so much to get us to the moon. It's incredibly irresponsible for someone with your platform to ignore facts like this ... this conspiracy theory has been debunked countless times, but now kids who look up to you will refuse to believe facts."
However, some tinfoil-hat-wearers were on hand to provide Curry with a bit of backup. For instance, one person chimed in: "How is it a disservice to question something nobody has undeniable proof has ever happened. You really think that early in space technology the US knew how to get to the moon and come back. Why haven't we been back since?"
To be honest, I don't think we're ever going to put this issue to bed. Even if we flew these people to the moon in their own personal rocket they'd probably still assume it was a wind-up.