For anyone who was worried that government bureaucrats don’t have enough to do, some comfort: The giant brains at NASA are hard at work taking away the racist, white supremacist names given to some heavenly bodies.
In a press release on Aug. 6, the space agency announced that all planets and other astronomical features will be referred only to by their scientific names, reports the Houston Chronicle.
The move becomes more understandable when one learns that NASA has an “Associate Administrator for Diversity and Equal Opportunity.” That official, Stephen T. Shih, asserted that “These nicknames and terms may have historical or culture connotations that are objectionable or unwelcoming, and NASA is strongly committed to addressing them.”
NASA says the harsh new rules will apply to planets, galaxies and other heavenly bodies.
To the relief of cold-climate Native Americans everywhere, the “Eskimo Nebula” (discovered in 1787 by William Hershel), will only be referred to as NGC 2392 under the new rules.
The so-called “Siamese Twins Galaxy” will be known only as NGC 4567 and NGC 4568.
“As the scientific community works to identify and address systemic discrimination and inequality in all aspects of the field, it has become clear that certain cosmic nicknames are not only insensitive but can be actively harmful,” the agency said in a news release.
“NASA is examining its use of unofficial terminology for cosmic objects as part of its commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.”
Thank heaven for tireless public servants such as these.