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Den's Journal

Stories by a short, fat bastard

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"I was there. I know what Gene Roddenberry envisioned. He went on at length about it in almost every meeting. He wasn't about technology, he was about envisioning a world that works for everyone, with no one and nothing left out. Gene Roddenberry was one of the great Social Justice Warriors. You don't get to claim him or his show as a shield of virtue for a cause he would have disdained."

David Gerrold - facebook post.

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Oh, the technology was there, and so was the conflict, but think about the way a lot of those conflicts got solved. Think about the social commentary -- which sometimes got downright heavy-handed, aka "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield". Think about the vision of the future -- a black person and an Asian on the bridge, women and PoC frequently shown as crew extras -- it's been noted that ClassicTrek did a better job of this than the reboot. All of this was obvious even to 10-year-old me watching it on first run -- not that I consciously thought about it all that much, but it was noticeable. It was part of the background, there to be absorbed. Even more so if (like me) you got into the ancillary material (aside from maybe the tech manuals). The Making of Star Trek, The World of Star Trek, The Trouble With Tribbles*, the episode novelizations by James Blish -- the descriptions of Roddenberry's vision for the future were everywhere, and ALL of them mentioned the social-justice parts.

Seriously, if someone of my generation could actually watch ClassicTrek without picking up on the social justice aspects... that was one helluva case of tunnel vision. And it doesn't sound like the guy has lost any of it since.

* By which I mean not the episode itself, but the book David Gerrold wrote about his experience in writing, selling, and being involved with the making of the episode.

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