Beyonce Urged to Donate Money From Controversial Challenger Disaster Song

Beyonce Urged to Donate Money From Controversial Challenger Disaster Song

Singer caused controversy with audio sample of 1986 space-shuttle disaster

Beyonce is being asked to donate proceeds from her song “XO” after controversy arose from her use of an audio clip from the deadly space shuttle Challenger disaster in the tune.

An online petition, launched by Florida resident Sarah McNulty, urges the “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)” singer to donate a quarter of the proceeds from the song to the Challenger Learning Center, which works to continue the Challenger Seven's mission to explore and educate young minds in space and science education. (The organization was launched by the families of the astronauts who died in the tragic mission, using money received in legal retribution from NASA.)

See video: Beyonce Under Fire for Sampling Challenger Disaster in Song

“Challenger is one of those tragedies that is perpetually a very raw wound for everyone, especially those in the space industry, and I believe that it should never be treated as anything but,” McNulty, an aerospace industry employee who lives on Florida's Space Coast, said of the petition. “It's never okay to trivialize a tragedy, but trivializing a tragedy such as Challenger, which was meant to be an inspirational mission to enlighten and inspire the nation and give us heroes to look up to, is a crime.”

As of this writing, the petition had gathered a little over 3,900 signatures, out of its goal of 4,000.

The 1986 Challenger disaster, the result of a faulty O-ring on one of the shuttle's solid rocket boosters,  caused the death of seven crew members. including schoolteacher Christa McAuliffe.

See video: Beyonce Sings and Dances With Terminally Ill 12-Year-Old Fan During Vegas Concert

Beyonce drew heat for sampling audio from the disaster in “XO,” with Challenger widow June Scobee Rodgers expressing disappointment on the space agency watchdog website NASAWatch.com.

“We were disappointed to learn that an audio clip from the day we lost our heroic Challenger crew was used in the song ‘XO,'” Rodgers wrote.

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The singer claimed in a statement that the audio sample was meant as a “tribute” to the Challenger crew, saying, “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.”

  • Jim

    She has $300 million in the bank! She should, or NASA should sue her. They own that sound byte.

    • Realist

      Money that she Earned! Her success didn't happen overnight, now everyone has their handout with bogus accusations and lawsuits.

  • time out

    The sample was / is for public consumption. They have no grounds for a suit. That said, this is ridiculous. NASA doesn't own the “sound bite” and this group is not part of NASA. What happened was tragic and I watched it live on TV 20 years ago. The song does not trivialize what happened. The song is a call to all of us to enjoy what we have and who we have because they can be taken at any moment. BTW, just because someone has money it does not mean they need to give it to everyone who sticks their hand out.

  • Souleymane Abdourahmane Sow

    I find it hilarious that throughout all this Beyoncé is the only one who isn't being ignorant or insensitive. People need to let it go, the song is about love and not taking your loved ones for granted, hence why the audio clip was used. We seriously have better things to do.
    /-)

  • Realist

    This whole story is ridiculous, Beyonce is not the first artist to use this audio some others even used the actual live clip of the tragedy. I knew the very moment this story was published, they would try to capitalize from this song. Just because she has the money doesn't mean she should have to give it away on someone else's terms.

  • Sparky

    Really now??? are u kidding me? is it because she's Beyoncé? I know she meant well with that song, this is a song about love, it's in no way disrespectful… Haters should just build a bridge and get over it… and spread love while they at it!!! <3