Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Some white ‘Star Trek’ fans are unhappy about remake’s diversity; Washington Post, June 23, 2017

Travis M. Andrews, Washington Post; Some white ‘Star Trek’ fans are unhappy about remake’s diversity

"Indeed, the ‘Star Trek’ series, as Manu Saadia put it in the New Yorker, has always been about inclusion, diversity and breaking down human-made social barriers. Saadia wrote:
Each successive “Star Trek” cast has been like a model United Nations. Nichols’s black communications specialist worked alongside George Takei’s Japanese helmsman and Walter Koenig’s (admittedly campy) Russian navigator. Leonard Nimoy’s Spock was half-human, half-Vulcan, and he bore traces of the actor’s own upbringing in a poor Jewish neighborhood in Boston. The Vulcan hand greeting, for instance, which Nimoy invented, is the Hebrew letter shin, the symbol for the Shekhinah, a feminine aspect of the divine. The original series aired only a few years after the Cuban missile crisis, at the height of the Vietnam War and the space race, and its vision of a reconciled humanity was bold. Nichols, who considered leaving the show after the first season, has said that she was persuaded to stay on by Martin Luther King, Jr., who told her that he watched “Star Trek” with his wife and daughters.
This isn’t the first time an entry in the “Star Trek” series has come under fire for including ever more diverse characters. Just last year, the film “Star Trek Beyond” portrayed Sulu as a gay man. It was the first time the series featured an openly gay character, and some fans were furious."

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