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David Gerrold, the writer of “The Trouble with Tribbles,” posted a response on Facebook to an article that’s been making the rounds, complaining about how the “SJW Glittery Hoo Ha crowd” is DESTROYING science fiction. Said article references Star Trek: The Original Series as an inspiration for engineers and other “real” SF fans.

Here’s an excerpt from Gerrold’s response:

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.”

“Most of the stories we wrote were about social justice. “The Cloud Minders,” “A Taste Of Armageddon,” “Errand Of Mercy,” “The Apple,” “Let That Be Your Last Battlefield,” and so many more. We did stories that were about exploring the universe not just because we could build starships, but because we wanted to know who was out there, what was our place in the universe, and what could we learn from the other races out there?”

“Star Trek was about social justice from day one.

The full post is on Facebook, and is very much worth reading.

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 20th, 2015 05:52 pm (UTC)
The 'glittery hoo ha' article made me want to take a picture of me, my PhD in astronomy from Cornell*, and my NK Jemisin and Mary Robinette Kowal books. (I only have Ann Leckie in ebook, or I'd do that one).

Because people who think that because SF inspired them towards science it can't inspire people towards a more just, diverse and ethical vision of humanity and human relations are full of shit. And while Roddenberry had some screw-ups in execution, the idea that SF should concern itself with humanity's place in the universe and how we treat each others, our world(s), and other species is important.

(I remember on Mark Oshiro's rewatch of TOS, he commented that the extras on the Enterprise looked more diverse than some modern shows. And re-watching the first season of TNG where, while the mini-skirt uniform variant still exists, it also is as unisex as the long-sleeved one**.)

* I'd have to check if it said 'astronomy' first. If I wasn't a space-based astronomer, I'd just photograph me, the books and the largest telescope I had access to.
** I've commented in the past that if the TOS reboot insisted on the miniskirt, I wish they'd gone this direction.
Feb. 20th, 2015 06:05 pm (UTC)
To paraphrase what another friend of mine said, if he thinks Star Trek was all about the flip-phones and sliding doors and not about anything to do with social justice, the only possible response is, "What show were YOU watching?" That was a 420 moment* if I ever saw one.

* From an article reviewing the reviews of the Avengers movie. A number of the reviews were rated "420", as in "what the hell were you smoking, because that's sure not what was on the screen!"

Feb. 20th, 2015 07:40 pm (UTC)
To shorter David Gerrold, "I knew Jack Kennedy. Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. You're no Jack Kennedy."
Feb. 20th, 2015 10:03 pm (UTC)
David Wilford
Feb. 20th, 2015 08:14 pm (UTC)
Now *everyone* at ICON 40 will be wanting to have David Gerrold come out and do a Marshall McLuhan imitation when discussing the current state of science fiction as compared to Ye Good Olde Days... ;^)
Feb. 20th, 2015 10:04 pm (UTC)
The social justice aspect of Star Trek was the largest part of Roddenberry's vision; I don't get where people think it's not. Unless, of course, to them Star Trek = the movie version.
Feb. 20th, 2015 10:54 pm (UTC)
Good for Mr Gerrold!
Feb. 21st, 2015 12:48 am (UTC)
Huzzah! (And thanks for sharing this.)
Feb. 21st, 2015 12:48 am (UTC)
This Lehman guy sounds like a little boy complaining about how letting *girls* in the clubhouse is spoiling everything ...
(Deleted comment)
Feb. 22nd, 2015 03:21 am (UTC)
It's accessible without a Facebook account.
(Deleted comment)
Feb. 22nd, 2015 11:55 pm (UTC)
None that I'm aware of, I'm afraid.
Feb. 23rd, 2015 02:44 am (UTC)
Ah, I see. You could try what I do - use a completely separate browser when accessing Facebook, set to clear all cookies and history when the browser is closed.
Feb. 21st, 2015 05:32 am (UTC)
That is a great response.

I have to wonder if any of these complainers were watching the same episodes of TOS as me.
Feb. 24th, 2015 01:49 am (UTC)
I already could tell as much from how Star Trek feels watching it, though such awesome confirmation is good to see. I mean, even stuff that failed at what it tried or is painfully dated now, the spirit of the show in general was...well, the opposite of such anti-SJ sentiment. I don't know how one could watch it and miss that, but people will see what they want when determined to twist things into confirming their own bigotry :/.

Trek's actually one of the few future-type things I actually feel like I could exist in. Another is Macross, which, funny thing, was pretty blatantly inspired by original Trek in places...

"And if nothing else, science fiction is about sociology -- because it's not just about the engineering, it's also about who we become when we reinvent our technology."

I also really like that bit, because that's often the most fascinating part for me, and then seeing it tossed aside for more samey backwards bland stuff...sigh.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )


Jim C. Hines


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