L Jay Aceto
Wall of Honor Location:Foil: 9 Panel: 2 Column: 3 Line: 110
Wall of Honor Level:Air and Space Friend
Honored By:Ms. Autumn L. Aceto
In 1979, Mr. Aceto formed a small group of D.C. based space activists to challenge The Agreement Governing the Activities of States on the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies, better known as the Moon Treaty. This agreement was an international treaty that turns jurisdiction of all heavenly bodies (including the orbits around such bodies) over to the international community. Thus, all activities must conform to international law (notably this includes the UN Charter). Mr. Aceto felt that the future of space exploration required private funding, and entrepreneurship to maintain U.S. dominance in space exploration.
The Moon Treaty was killed due to the activism of a handful of L5 Society members including Mr. Aceto. Specifically, Mr. Aceto's campaign for awareness of the provisions against any form of sovereignty or private property in outer space that would make space colonization impossible and the provisions against any alteration of the environment of any celestial body thereby prohibiting all potential private or commercial business interests.
Mr. Aceto campaigned aggressively to prevent the U.S. from participating in this treaty from 1979 until 1984. Mr. Aceto's grass roots campaign on the steps of the National Air & Space Museum collected thousands of signatures. Additionally, Mr. Aceto helped to coordinate a national phone tree used to target Congressmen, Senators and House of Representative members, to discourage them from supporting other laws or treaty provisions that would prevent the profit motives of private business interest with success. This phone tree was later used to influence changes to the declining NASA budget, and to support the efforts to maintain the shuttle program.