Over one hundred of the Star Trek television and movie series’ actors and producers have formed the official Trek Against Trump group and Facebook page. It’s the first time in the 50 year history of America’s long running, pluralistic space adventure series that they’ve departed the 23rd Century to make any form of political statement during an election year.
Included in the group are producer J.J. Abrams who rebooted the series on the big screen and both Zachary Quinto, Simon Pegg and Chris Pine who portray Captain Kirk, Scottie and Mr. Spock in the most recent trilogy of movies are committed to the group as well. Members of the original Star Trek cast participating in Trek Against Trump include George Takei whose fame has only escalated since portraying Hikaru Sulu on the original series, and Walter Koenig who played the Pavel Chekov, whose Russian-accented english was provocative to American audiences during the Cold War when the original series debuted. The actors who portrayed Commander William T. Riker and Lt. Commander Data, both William Frakes and Brent Spiner also signed onto the group, whose mission statement reads:
Star Trek has always offered a positive vision of the future, a vision of hope and optimism, and most importantly, a vision of inclusion, where people of all races are accorded equal respect and dignity, where individual beliefs and lifestyles are respected so long as they pose no threat to others. We cannot turn our backs on what is happening in the upcoming election. Never has there been a presidential candidate who stands in such complete opposition to the ideals of the Star Trek universe as Donald Trump. His election would take this country backward, perhaps disastrously. We need to elect a president who will move this country forward into the kind of future we all dream of: where personal differences are understood and accepted, where science overrules superstition, where people work together instead of against each other.
The resolution of conflicts on Star Trek was never easy. Don’t remain aloof –vote! We have heard people say they will vote Green or Libertarian or not at all because the two major candidates are equally flawed. That is both illogical and inaccurate. Either Secretary Clinton or Mr. Trump will occupy the White House. One is an amateur with a contemptuous ignorance of national laws and international realities, while the other has devoted her life to public service, and has deep and valuable experience with the proven ability to work with Congress to pass desperately needed legislation. If, as some say, the government is broken, a protest vote will not fix it.
Have you just turned 18? Have you moved? Have you never voted before? Some states have early registration (early October) and/or absentee ballots. You can’t vote if you are not registered. So make it so. Go to https://www.rockthevote.com, a non-profit, non-partisan organization, and fulfill your civic duty. Because, damn it, you are a citizen of the USA, with an obligation to take part in our democracy! Do this not merely for yourself but for all the generations that follow. Vote for a future of enlightenment and inclusion, a future that will someday lead us to the stars.
While every member of the Star Trek cast members who signed the mission statement has their own personal reasons, none has the history that George Takei experienced, being heavily discriminated upon by America’s government for nothing more than the nationality of his birth parents, though he is a natural-born citizen himself.
George Takei was born in Los Angeles to Japanese-American parents in 1937 and in the early 1940s he was unlawfully detained during World War II for an indefinite period of time, first in Arkansas and then later in California based camps. “Yes, I remember the barbed wire and the guard towers and the machine guns, but they became part of my normal landscape,” Takei has said, “What would be abnormal in normal times became my normality in camp.”
Takei’s many famous quotations could fill up multiple articles, but this is the most important idea in American politics in 2016:
“And it seems to me important for a country, for a nation to certainly know about its glorious achievements but also to know where its ideals failed, in order to keep that from happening again.”
In the 1960s, Star Trek broke ground by normalizing the kind of cooperative ventures which dominate today’s sharing economy many decades before America’s reality began catching up to the ideals expressed by our forefathers in the Constitution in which all men are created equal. It only makes sense that so many Trekkers would make this extraordinary political statement against the Republican nominee and in favor of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton as a devoted public servant.
Ira Steven Behr
Mark Robert Brown
Nicole de Boer
Keith R.A. DeCandido
John de Lancie
Jonathan Del Arco
David C. Fein
Juan Carlos Fernandez
Michael Jan Friedman
Robert Duncan McNeill
Ronald B. Moore
Eugene & Heidi Roddenberry
Hallie Todd Withrow
Grant Stern is the Executive Editor of Occupy Democrats and published author. His new Meet the Candidates 2020 book series is distributed by Simon and Schuster. He's also mortgage broker, community activist and radio personality in Miami, Florida., as well as the producer of the Dworkin Report podcast. Grant is also an occasional contributor to Raw Story, Alternet, and the DC Report, and an unpaid senior advisor to the Democratic Coalition.