'Houston, we've had a problem'
April 12th, 2011
05:33 PM ET

'Houston, we've had a problem'

The idea that "home of manned spaceflight" won't be home to one of NASA's retired shuttles isn't sitting so well with some.

The Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, was considered a strong contender to receive one of four retired space shuttles.

Instead, the honors have gone to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida (Atlantis); the California Science Center in Los Angeles (Endeavour); the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Virginia (Discovery); and the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum in New York (Enterpise), NASA administrator Charles F. Bolden Jr. said Tuesday.

Many in Space City are none too pleased by the snub, considering the role it has played in the development of the nation's space program.

Columnists and blogs, including Jalopnik, are weighing in on "Why Houston Deserved a Damn Space Shuttle," and the news has prompted the Twittersphere to make #JSC, #Houston and #spaceshuttle trending topics in the hours since NASA made the announcement.

"Sad day in Houston," CopyDRcom tweeted, summing up the prevailing sentiments of disappointment over the decision, particularly among many who claim some connection to Johnson Space Center.

"As a former JSC co-op student/employee, I must say, in my most composed manner possible, WHAT THE HELL, NASA HQ? >:/" former JSC employee juliamontgomery said.

"Personally I am disappointed Houston/ JSC didn't get a Shuttle & from a space history standpoint deserved one. But again not surprised," ISS flight controller greg_forest said.

"Before astronauts ever boarded a space shuttle, they trained in Houston. When they orbited Earth, they phoned home to Houston," Lisa_llbc86 tweeted. "I have pickup truck. I'll sneak Endeavour back to #JSC. That's how we do it in TX"

Others, however,  felt the appropriate locations were selected.

"While I'm sad JSC isn't getting a orbiter, lot more people will see them in their chosen destinations :/," self-proclaimed "space nut" @ericmblog tweeted.

"#Shuttle destinations seem very reasonable. Glad #OV104 will be staying at home. 😉 Shame for #Adler, #JSC, but no perfect solution," astrodad said.

soundoff (239 Responses)
  1. LOL

    Well you Texans can always rewrite your school textbooks explaining that the shuttle is like God and is in Houston in spirit......

    April 12, 2011 at 6:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bryan


      April 12, 2011 at 6:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Houstonian

      As a proud texan and resident of Houston . . . i found this funny. Some of the other comments; however, were in poor taste.

      As to the point of the thread, i believe an old saying is appropriate. Deserve ain't got a damn thing to do with it. Does Houston deserve one? Yes. But there are only so many shuttles that can go around and Houston didn't make the list. I agree with all of the pics except NY. Three of the four on the west coast is illogical.

      Johnson Space Center is still an awesome place to visit without the shuttle and i encourage anyone visiting the area to do so.

      April 12, 2011 at 7:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ron Jeremy

      nailed it! +1

      April 12, 2011 at 9:53 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Mike Baker

    The Udvar-Hazy Center already has a Shuttle which has been on display since the center opened. How many do they need? Give one to Houston.

    April 12, 2011 at 6:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shuttle Shuffle

      The shuttle in the Udvar-Hazy center, Enterprise, is going to be the one at the Intrepid. It will be replaced at the Smithsonian with Discovery. But yes, Houston or somewhere else in the middle of the country should have gotten one of the shuttles.

      April 12, 2011 at 6:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • David

      Sorry... that one's going to The Big Apple.

      April 12, 2011 at 9:31 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Bryan

    Go back to sleep

    April 12, 2011 at 6:37 pm | Report abuse |
  4. It's Simple

    It is simple Obama is rewarding those who vote for Democrats all of the four states recieving shuttles voted for Obama in 2008. He needs them again in 2012. Houston is screwed regardless the shuttles still have 3/4's of thier useful lives left and Obama is shutting down the program this is not about saving money it is about getting Texans.

    April 12, 2011 at 6:38 pm | Report abuse |
  5. demand destruction

    High price of petroleum has destroyed demand for consumer products.
    The whole shuttle thing is a plot to get the American people to think New York is important.

    April 12, 2011 at 6:42 pm | Report abuse |
  6. The United 49

    Texa*s is now getting what it deserves, for eight years they drained America's Treasury for their personal benefit. They gave us a 1.2 trillion dollar war that wasn't needed to enrich their Oil Companies and other state business.

    America's United 49 States, need to tell Texans its time to pay us back, so no Space Shuttle gifts and time to shut down the Johnson Space Center and move it out of state.

    April 12, 2011 at 6:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Not Elvis

      So you are saying to ignore the thousands of people who have given blood, sweat and, yes, tears to support the manned space flight program, and this decision you say is payback for Bush? Go back to watching Glenn Beck and the other conspiracy nuts.

      April 12, 2011 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • common sense2011

      Yea right the fact that we in texas have a better economy than most of the rest of the us and have to share electricity with other states because we produce a surplus and they have a deficit negates your entire statement. I hate to tell you but the budget crisis the us is facing is far more easy to blame on states that ran over budget and have horrible economys such as michigan or california...not to mention that we produce the most oil of any state and have for years whether that be by companies based in texas or actual oil drilled here so why your state is most likely a major reason we need foreign oil mine was a reason we didn't need even more. Back to the topic at hand how could you really think houston doesn't deserve a shuttle houston is the command control of nasa and has been for decades

      April 12, 2011 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • The United 49

      @Uncommon sense 2011;

      Lets see, your buddy Goergie Bush dumps billions of dollars into your economy for eight years at the expense of 49 other states and its too bad guys. You screw America out of 1.2 trillion dollars for YOUR war, not to mention the Brave Men and Women who were lost due to this reckless action, and now its the fault of other states not yours.

      Well enjoy wearing your rose colored glasses in Texa*s, the time is soon coming for your state to pay back America!

      April 12, 2011 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • No respect

      Texas didn't give you trillions of debt and a war. It was all those morons that blindly followed the Bush puppet masters. Bush isn't even from Texas. He grew up on the east coast. He bought his ranch in Crawford one year before he ran from presidency – so it was a prop to win an election and act like a cowboy (a page out of Reagans book). Now that he has left DC, he sold the ranch. Where was he when Oprah interviewed him last month – east coast. I live in Texas. I am educated and I didn't vote for a fake politician for governor or for president. For all you morons that want to blame Texas, you need to check your voter card to see who you voted for in 2000 AND 2004. Not to mention Florida gave Bush the presidency in the first place.

      April 13, 2011 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Waaaambulance

    I'm surprised at the number of big babies crying that they didn't get their way in everything. Waaaah!
    Why should you even care? Isn't Texass big enough for your whiny egos?

    April 12, 2011 at 6:53 pm | Report abuse |
  8. MPLArms

    your neighbor,
    You're so right!
    All the shuttle's have been white!
    Now that's RACIST!

    April 12, 2011 at 6:54 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Texass is a small-minded state.

    If Texass got what it deserved, it would be nothing but a radioactive crater the size of....well, you get my drift.
    What a bunch of immature people to make such a whiny bunch of noises over what museum will have a shuttle! Really, children, if you can't act like adults, then don't be surprised when people treat you like whiny children. Because that's how you're acting.

    April 12, 2011 at 6:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Unliklely Oilfield Wife

      It's so funny when people think they know all about Houston. Did you know this city voted for Obama over McCain by nearly 20,000 votes? Did you know this is the first large city in the US to elect a lesbian mayor? I didn't either until I moved here. It's a great city full of great people, amazing food, awesome shopping, lots of jobs, and a super low cost of living. Yeah it's hot, but at least we don't have to shovel the heat.

      April 12, 2011 at 7:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • In Texas

      @ Unlikely oilfield wife:
      The Houston you are so proud of is a result of believers in Capitalism like George W Bush and other conservatives. If Houston is oil capital of the world and the other success that came along, then its all credit goes to Bush and his father. Do you even realize what you think and what you do?? How come you are so proud of associating with oilfield and simultaneously proud of voting for anti-fossil fuel communist Obama??

      April 12, 2011 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • guest

      In Texas what are you the oil field thought police? As you have demonstrated, yes, most of Texas is small-minded...

      April 12, 2011 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • The United 49

      @In Texas;

      Glad you represent Texa*s, the more people listen to your logic, the more people will realize you are a moron.
      As for your Republic of Texa*s flag waving, just remember without the support of the United States, Texa*s would be nothing but a primitive backwater.

      April 12, 2011 at 11:22 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Dave

    I'm happy we're getting one in Calif.....it will be about a 30 minute ride. I'mma go play in it:::-) Neeners.

    April 12, 2011 at 7:07 pm | Report abuse |
  11. S. Surrell

    If "where most people will see it" is the criteria, then there are many other better places. Don't ya think?

    April 12, 2011 at 7:14 pm | Report abuse |
  12. James

    Whats N.Y. got to do with one of the shuttles? It belongs in Houston!

    April 12, 2011 at 7:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • FC

      To be fair, NY got the one that never flew in space. You're welcome to have it.

      April 12, 2011 at 7:32 pm | Report abuse |
  13. foxglove

    It time to cut waste..shuttle, defense spending, etc on equipment not needed. Make it off limits for lobbyist to talk to any congress or senator about a bill and you will save trillions. It is time to get tough but the GOP or Tea Party has no interest in going there.

    April 12, 2011 at 7:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • JustinFromNJ

      Unfortunately the Democrats do the exact same thing.

      One immediate fix we can do to this nation would be to get rid of the running mate system. Let's go back to the original system where the person with the most votes becomes President, and the person with the next most votes becomes Vice President. The costs would be minimal (if any).

      April 12, 2011 at 11:15 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Former Republican - Now Independent

    I also believe that NASA botched it, but I will give nothing to the poor, pathetic bruised ego in Houston. There should have been a shuttle on the east coast, west coast, and in the central U.S. – either Chicago Illinois or Kansas City. The Enterprise could have gone anywhere else. Houston is home to the astronauts and really has little "right" to having a shuttle. Heck, Cape Canaveral has more of a claim as that's where the shuttles flew from. Don't know who made the final decision, but what little regard I had for Bolden has disappeared. He's making Dan Golden look OK.

    April 12, 2011 at 7:19 pm | Report abuse |
  15. MyBeautifulTexas

    I laughed when I heard that all we got were a couple of seats from the shuttle...

    April 12, 2011 at 7:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • MPLArms

      Been there, it ain't.
      Suggest you look up the origin of the phrase,"Don't mess with Texas"

      April 12, 2011 at 8:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • MyBeautifulTexas

      I'm not gonna sit here and argue with you how awesome my state is..As far as I'm concerned, I'm glad you feel that way...I don't want you here...lol

      April 12, 2011 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse |
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