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Beyoncé gets slammed for insensitive sample of Space Shuttle

By April Neale Dec 31, 2013, 23:02 GMT

Beyoncé gets slammed for insensitive sample of Space Shuttle

Beyonce attending "Beyonce" Album Release Party at School of Visual Arts Theater in New York City on December 21, 2013. Photo copyright by Debby Wong / PR Photos.

Performer Beyoncé has been labeled "insensitive" by some current and former NASA astronauts and their families for sampling audio from the space shuttle Challenger disaster for a love song off her newly released album.

ABC News reports that the Challenger tragedy is sampled in her new LP. The ship exploded 73 seconds after liftoff from the Kennedy Space Center Jan. 28, 1986. All seven crewmembers aboard were killed while being filmed on live TV.

"Flight controllers here looking very carefully at the situation. Obviously a major malfunction," now-retired NASA public affairs officer Steve Nesbitt said as the nation watched wreckage fall toward the ocean on live television.

Twenty-seven years later, Nesbitt's voice is snipped for six seconds into the video for Beyoncé's new song "XO," about a troubled relationship.

Beyonce, in an exclusive statement to ABC News this morning, said, "My heart goes out to the families of those lost in the Challenger disaster. The song 'XO' was recorded with the sincerest intention to help heal those who have lost loved ones and to remind us that unexpected things happen, so love and appreciate every minute that you have with those who mean the most to you.

"The songwriters included the audio in tribute to the unselfish work of the Challenger crew with hope that they will never be forgotten."

ABC reports that the former and current NASA astronauts, employees and Challenger family members are not happy about this.

June Scobee Rodgers, the widow of Challenger Space Shuttle Commander Dick Scobee told ABC News she is "disappointed" in the singer's decision to include the clip.

"We were disappointed to learn that an audio clip from the day we lost our heroic Challenger crew was used in the song 'XO,'" she said. "The moment included in this song is an emotionally difficult one for the Challenger families, colleagues and friends. We have always chosen to focus not on how our loved ones were lost, but rather on how they lived and how their legacy lives on today."

Retired NASA astronaut Clayton Anderson told ABC News, "For the words to be used in the video is simply insensitive, at the very least."

 



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