The NASA astronaut Jeanette Epps has still not had the reason why her historical mission was lifted to the International Space Station. Epps would be the first black long-term crew member on board the ISS.
( Jeanette Epps | Twitter )
In January, just as the NASA astronaut Jeanette Epps would make history as the first long-term black astronaut aboard the International Space Station, her mission was abruptly interrupted. Epps revealed that she still had no reason why she was taken off the mission.
Her family members believe that her skin color may have played a role in the decision.
Jeanette Epps Still Not Telled Why
In an interview with Houston Chronicle Epps, she was discovered that someone from NASA and not Roscosmos made the decision to take her from the ISS mission. Roscosmos is the Russian space organization, NASA sends its astronauts on Roscosmos shuttles to ISS. Epps says she has been held in the dark about the decision to take her by 6 June.
Epps says she does not make the decision or where it came from removing her from the mission. She says she had been training with the Russians to prepare the mission and had good relations with them. Epps says that the Russians defended her because it was dangerous to remove someone from a crew who has been trained for several years.
In its notice that Epps was withdrawn from the mission, NASA did not give a reason why it had happened. Instead, NASA said that this was a decision that took into account a number of factors. It considered that this was a staff question that it did not provide information about.
This would have been Epp's first flight in circulation, instead she was awarded the Astronaut Office at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. NASA said there was an opportunity that she could still be assigned future missions to space.
Family Cites Discrimination
Epp's brother, Henry Epps, took on Facebook to revoke NASA's decision to take his sister off the ISS mission. In a Facebook post, he blamed racism and misogyny on the space program because she was taken off the mission. He says that it can be seen from the white astronaut who was chosen to replace her on the mission. Henry Epps removed the record shortly after it was published on Facebook.
He also linked to a MoveOn.org petition asking for NASA to restore his sister back to the mission. Jeanette Epps would not comment on the character of her brother's comment and said she did not start the petition. She added that she did not have a medical condition or family problem that prevented her from going to space. NASA said that diversity is an integral part of its mission and its astronauts are different.
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