President Donald Trump signed an executive order Friday to revive the National Space Council, signifying a renewed (yet vague) focus on space exploration. Colonel Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the moon, was there to witness the event. He tried to liven the room with a Buzz Lightyear quip, only to have Trump crash and burn on the landing pad.
As you can see in the White House video, the exchange happens right as Trump is about to sit down to sign the executive order, which will put Vice President Mike Pence in charge of advising the president on space exploration. It’s a little hard to make out what Trump says right as he opens up the folder containing the E.O. (and the White House transcript left those words out), but it sounded like, “We know what this is, space. That’s all it has to say, space.” Then, to Aldrin, he joked, “There’s a lot of room out there, right?”
Then, this happens.
Buzz Aldrin: Infinity and beyond. (Laughter)
Donald Trump: This is infinity here. It could be infinity. We don’t really don’t know. But it could be. It has to be something, but it could be infinity, right?
It starts around 10 minutes in, if you want to watch the latest reminder that this man is President of the United States for yourself.
This raises so many questions. Has Trump ever seen Toy Story? I mean, he clearly knows what Pixar is— in January, he screened Finding Dory in the White House while protests against the travel ban raged outside. Is he not aware of one of the most famous catchphrases of the 1990s... and beyond? I’d argue it’s just as famous, if not more so, than “You’re fired.” And, perhaps most importantly, does Trump know anything about space, beyond it simply being “space”?
I’m thinking maybe he needs to sit down and get a tutorial from Neil deGrasse Tyson... although I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t return Trump’s calls. In short, Aldrin is all of us right now.