When I first thought about writing this post, it was going to be a grand argument about how Star Trek was the expression of a fundamental need in the human spirit, that it explored not just strange new worlds but the very nature of humanity itself. At its best, Star Trek holds up a mirror to humanity and pushes the boundaries of what it means to be human, to remind us that we’re stronger together than apart, that it’s important to do the right thing because it’s the right thing, and that we should always strive to be better than we are.
But how do I compete with the words of Gene Roddenberry himself?
I don’t, obviously, because he struck to the heart of things that later blossomed into the philosophy of IDIC, Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations, something that’s become central to what Star Trek is and means, something that should mean we walk through the world with eyes and hearts and minds open.
But I can certainly thank him for the ball that he started rolling, the piece of culture that’s been with me since before my first concrete memories and will almost certainly be part of my dying hours in some way.
Live long and prosper, everyone.
“Star Trek was an attempt to say that humanity will reach maturity and wisdom on the day that it begins not just to tolerate but take a special delight in differences in ideas and differences in life forms. […] If we cannot learn to actually enjoy those small differences, to take a positive delight in those small differences between our own kind, here on this planet, then we do not deserve to go out into space and meet the diversity that is almost certainly out there.” ― Gene Roddenberryby