In the comments to the question Why were the SpaceX Crew-1 astronauts backed up by guards with automatic weapons?, the question was raised, what force the guards in the photo belong to and in another comment, it was suggested that this would be a good followup question.

Is that so?

Incidentally, I raised the question myself in a comment, and it was answered by (one of) our resident NASA expert(s).


2 Answers 2


I think it would be on topic because they are employed (at least in this instance) for the purpose of a space launch.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Agreed, it's about the context. "Why do the KSC SWAT team use these holsters?" for example evidently isn't on-topic, but their relevance to mission support certainly is. $\endgroup$
    – Dan
    Commented Nov 19, 2020 at 16:06


This is addressed in @called2voyage's answer but I'll add the following:

I'm the author of the linked comment which includes:

...so I think it's a great follow-up question. Please consider just posting it as a new one and linking back here for background. It would only need to be a sentence or two max, and could use the same tags"

and the current tags include , and which have been used 54, 19 and 18 times. While that doesn't prove anything it suggest such a question may be on-topic. Not all of those security and weapon questions are about shooting at bears after landing in the tundra.

already answered in a comment?

... in a comment, and it was answered...

Stack Exchange is about good answers to on-topic questions. Comments don't count, comments are to be considered ephemeral (temporary), receive less critical up votes and can't be down-voted, and due to low visibility and interest can be wrong without any contrary comments pointing it out.

In Stack Exchange it's always okay to ask a question even if you (think that you) know the answer. Asking it as a question is a way of confirming/validating something or finding out it's not right, and to find supporting sources we might not have known and are happy to learn about, and to ensure this is all searchable, findable and available to future readers as well.

To avoid the possibility of a "What have you tried first?" or "What research have you done?" just quote the comment that purports an answer, and simply asks "Is this correct? If so, how do we know?" and users will recognize/remember that fact-based answers should be supported with links, references, or in some special cases1, support can be augmented with specific personal knowledge.

1This varies between SE communities, but I've accepted answers like "No it doesn't (personal knowledge)" and "No it won't (I asked them)" based on large bodies of expert-level answers previously posted by those users.

Go for it!

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