Damage to the Russian Soyuz capsule has delayed the December launch of the next crew to the International Space Station (ISS), showing the dangers of relying entirely upon Soyuz for launches after America scraps the space shuttles.
By cancelling the shuttles before an American alternative is ready, we are endangering the lives of our ISS crew, and thus endangering the space station itself. The administration refused to save the shuttles or keep them on a continual "launch on need" basis, thus a national treasure is being thrown away prematurely. Each orbiter was built for 100 launches, yet none have had more than 38 launches.
Redundancy in launch options (shuttle + Soyuz) can assure if one system fails the other can keep supplies going to ISS and continued crew access. The July cooling pump failure on ISS also highlights the need for heavy lift to repair ISS as needed.
This would be a good time to contact your members of Congress to warn them of the need of keeping the shuttles on an emergency "launch on need" basis. US Capitol: 202-224-3121