Podcast Assignment – Review A Speech
“The Space Shuttle "Challenger" Tragedy Address”
It was January 28, 1986 and the country had just witnessed the inflight destruction of the space shuttle Challenger and the loss of all seven lives aboard. I chose the speech that then president Ronald Reagan delivered to the country that evening because for my generation, at the time this was our 911. That evening what was to be the State of the Union address was, instead an address to the families of the astronauts lost, the country and the world, to convey the heartache the United States was feeling for the loss.
Although a short address the words are powerful and clear, the message was clear, to the point and no mistake could be made that it was genuine and heartfelt. Although I feel this speech is hard to categorize I find it motivational, that no matter what happens in life you have to keep trying and not give up, the astronauts who lost their lives that day would want it that way and that we will not forget what they did. After first reading the transcript, I found very little difference in the actual speech as the subject of the speech sets the tone before you even begin to read or listen to it.
Growing up in Florida my family went to see all the shuttle launches. I liked this speech and chose it because, having witnessed this event myself first hand, this speech reminded me of sitting in front of the T.V. later that evening and feeling the sadness of that day. I cannot say I really learned anything from the speech itself, but watching it again, you can see how hard it is to face an entire nation and speak on a topic of great sadness. It also reminded me that being a witness to an historical event really makes it stand out more than just reading about it years later in a book.