Space porn: These images are (quite literally) out of this world
A petition to label Westboro Baptist Church a hate group has accumulated more than 260,000 signatures, making it the most popular petition to the Obama Administration’s We the People program, Politico reported. Several other petitions urging that the church be stripped of its tax-exempt status have also accumulated tens of thousands of signatures.
Topeka, Kan.,-based Westboro Baptist Church, better known as those “God Hates Fags” creeps, is already considered a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Most recently it made news for threatening to picket the funerals of the Newtown massacre victims. The hacker group Anonymous responded with attacks on the church’s online presence.
While this loathsome church is very good at drawing attention to itself, it’s not clear what it would do if the media didn’t amplify its every utterance. While its Web site has no information about the church or its members, Wikipedia says it has only 40 members.
The White House says it responds to petitions with more than 25,000 signatures. There are currently 162 active petitions on the site addressing topics including gun control, mandated vacation time and the construction of a “Death Star.”
Alex Halperin is news editor at Salon. You can follow him on Twitter @alexhalperin.More Alex Halperin.
NASA astronaut Mike Hopkins
On December 28, 2013, Expedition 38 crew member Mike Hopkins participating in the second of two space walks to replace a degraded pump module on the International Space Station. (NASA astronaut Rick Mastracchio is reflected in his helmet!)
The Soyuz TMA-10M
The Soyuz TMA-10M headed towards the International Space Station with crew members from Expedition 37 onboard.
40 years ago the Apollo 8 mission flew up to the moon, orbited it ten times and then returned to Earth. This picture was taken from that flight and shows the Earth as it seemingly rises in similar fashion to a sunrise.
Sunrise from Expedition 36
NASA Flight Engineer Karen L. Nyberg of Expedition 36 took this photo of the sun rising -- a sight they saw nearly 16 times per day due to the speed of the International Space Station's orbit around the earth.
A pair of NanoRacks CubeSats -- nanosattelite spacecrafts carrying experiments -- were launched by Expedition 38.