Former NASA Astronaut Scott Kelly Lands in Hot Water After Quoting Winston Churchill

October 10, 2018 Updated: October 10, 2018

Scott Kelly, the 54-year-old former astronaut and retired U.S. Navy Captain, found himself sandwiched between two of this Twitter posts about Winston Churchill.

Kelly is a veteran of four space flights and commanded the International Space Station on three expeditions. His first spaceflight was as a pilot of space shuttle Discovery in Dec. 1999.

In an Oct. 7 tweet, likely referring to the situation after the confirmation of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, Kelly wrote: “One of the greatest leaders of modern times, Sir Winston Churchill said, ‘in victory, magnanimity.’ I guess those days are over.” The tweet got more than 700 comments.

Churchill wrote “in victory, magnanimity” in his book on World War II, indicating the winners of a conflict need to show grace.

Some of his left-leaning followers apparently didn’t like Kelly’s praise of Churchill, whom they try to label as “racist.” They linked Churchill to the Bengal famine in India which killed at least three million people in 1943.

Merely seven hours later, Kelly apologized to his Twitter followers without delay. “Did not mean to offend by quoting Churchill. My apologies,” he said, “I will go and educate myself further on his atrocities, racist views which I do not support.”

“My point was we need to come together as one nation. We are all Americans. That should transcend partisan politics,” he added.

However, the apology didn’t help to calm down the issue. It caused even more, fiercer backlashes. Numerous fans thought the apology was unnecessary and inappropriate. More than 13,000 comments were posted after his apology tweet and 1,400 people retweeted it.

“There was no need to apologize,” Winston Gin—who identifies himself as a retired police officer—commented. “Winston Churchill was a great man & a magnificent leader. Do not bend to pressure from the ignorant left.”

Dinesh D’Souza, the Indian-born commentator and influential director of the documentary movie “Death of a Nation,” thinks what Kelly needs is courage.

“How the left beats weak people into submission,” D’Souza said in a Twitter post, “What you need is some training in resolution and courage. You could learn THIS from Winston Churchill.”

“Stop Apologizing for Our History”

Conservative political commentator Ben Shapiro also joined in with his opinion: “All the whiny brats ripping on Kelly for quoting Churchill would be speaking German without Churchill,” he tweeted.

In his op-ed published in the National Review, Shapiro wrote: “we cannot come together as one nation so long as we engage in the foolish exercise of savaging our civilizational history.”

Shapiro brought up more examples from American history: “The fact that George Washington was a slaveholder does not render his status as father of the country moot,” he said, “Human beings are products of their time.”

“But the process of civilizational development requires us to separate the wheat from the chaff—and to celebrate the wheat,” he added.


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