Do astronauts still matter?
They used to be such a big deal; their names were stuff of legends: Shepard, Glen, Armstrong. (On the other side of the world: Gagarin, Titov, Leonov.) But now?
Not so much. NASA has hit the pause button. Space exploration has been reduced to private companies, tourism, and whatever Russia can push to the International Space Station.
Recently, Russia launched Soyuz MS-15, with American Jessica Meir on board. By our count, she becomes the fourth Jewish woman in space, and the first since Marsha Ivins took off on her final flight back in 2001.
So, do astronauts still matter?
To go where so few have gone before? To push the boundaries of human exploration? To drink their own urine? To add to the exclusive list of Jews in Space?
We still think they are pretty cool.