For our 2nd edition of #IETheIssue, we’re examining the modern misinformation landscape. In this piece, @MaraMontalbano reports on the lingering conspiracy that the moon landing was a hoax (it wasn’t). 👨‍🚀🌕 THREAD:
1/ Buzz Aldrin punched a guy, back in 2002 when a man confronted the history-making astronaut on the street outside a Los Angeles hotel with a Bible, asked him to swear on the book that he walked on the moon, and called him a liar when he refused.
2/ This is just one example of how the small but vocal group of “moon hoaxers” have tried for decades to prove that it was all an expensive ruse orchestrated by the United States government.
3/ The attempt to get Aldrin to validate these theories turned violent after several minutes of contentious questioning. Aldrin was not charged with any crime because authorities said video of the incident shows, and witnesses said, he was provoked.
4/ @RickFienberg of @AAS_Office doesn’t condone violence, but agreed it can be frustrating to deal with moon hoaxers. He once participated in a televised discussion with the man who is credited with creating the moon landing hoax movement.
5/ Bill Kaysing’s 1976 book “We Never Went to the Moon” details his arguments that NASA launched an empty rocket that fell back to Earth out of public view and the video of the moon walk was produced on an artificial lunar landscape created at Area 51.
6/ Kaysing and Fienberg, who was working toward his graduate degree in astronomy at Harvard at the time, agreed to discuss Kaysing’s theories on a local television show for WBZ-TV in Boston in 1981.
7/ “None of the faculty wanted to touch it so they said, ‘What about that grad student? He seems kind of talkative.’” – @RickFienberg
8/ Once they got into the discussion about Kaysing’s theories, Fienberg says he wasn’t fazed. “I realized that he was just raising a bunch of arguments that were easily debunked if you knew science and engineering and something about space flight.”
9/ @RickFienberg doesn’t think the discussion did much to convince Kaysing to stop parroting his theories. While his book was never a best-seller, it did get him on television and radio in the years following, and inspired some to take up his cause.
10/ Moon hoax theories have also been a source of entertainment. Hollywood has taken these fringe ideas and turned them into money. In 1978, “Capricorn One” hit theaters across the U.S. and seemed to be a direct take on Kaysing’s book.
11/ But @RickFienberg says while moon hoaxers haven’t had a real impact on the space industry, that doesn’t mean they’re harmless. “If you distrust the government and you distrust science, then you make poor decisions because they aren't based on reality.”
12/ When confronted with these ideas, Feinberg is inquisitive: “‘Why do you think that? Can you give me examples or evidence?’ I don't try to turn people into scientists. I try to get them to question what they're suggesting or reading, and believing.”
For @MaraMontalbano’s full story "50 Years On, the Idea of a Faked Moon Landing Is the That Hoax Conspiracy Theorists Can’t Quit. Here’s Why." for #IETheIssue:

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More from @InsideEdition

13 Nov
Marlene Taraskiewicz has been searching for her daughter Susan’s killer for close to three decades. In this recent Inside Edition In-Depth piece, she explained to @maramontalbano why she isn’t close giving up. THREAD:
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For our 2nd edition of #IETheIssue, we’re examining the modern misinformation landscape. In this piece, @mayanyani reports on the history of presidential illnesses, and how they may have been downplayed. THREAD:
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2/ Trump recovered and returned to the campaign trail within a week. The president’s rush to get back to business, as Election Day swiftly approaches, isn’t a new attitude when it comes to presidents, according to historians.
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