Growing up in a house in the early 70s with 2 older brothers and only 1 TV, it is not surprising that I ended up watching a lot of Star Trek. At first, it was a great way to bond with my brothers, being the annoying baby sister by several years, but then I grew to better understand the stories and the valuable lessons they were trying to impart, to name a few:
- How to resolve conflict amicably and to the benefit of each of the contrasting parties.
- How to not interfere with the normal working order of a civilisation or natural environment and to limit as much as possible your impact when you must intervene.
- How to overcome prejudice between races, as well as between species and nations.
- That keeping your word and your promises is more meaningful than you will ever realise.
- Why it is always best to stand by those who stand by you.
- That peace IS possible and well worth the struggle to find it.
- To value friendship as one of the most noble human virtues.
- That logic is only the beginning of true wisdom.
With Leonard Nimoy’s passing today, I cannot help but feel that a large part of my childhood was lost, but thankfully not forgotten. Without people like Leonard Nimoy and William Shatner and the rest of the cast of Star Trek to embody these virtues, I may not have learned these lessons soon enough, nor been able to put them into proper context. Certainly I would have learned some of these values from my siblings and parents, but children often relate much easier to colourful characters in books and theatre than they do adults who seem to be constantly telling them what to do.
Shows like Star Trek implanted the seed of hope in many of us. The hope that our world could be better, if we all worked together. The hope that peace was and is indeed possible. The hope that racial tensions in the future would be a thing of the very distant past.
Think what we might have learned if we only had shows like “Big Brother” and “The Real Housewives of Wherever” on which to rely. Oh, wait…that’s happening to the newest generation, isn’t it?
To all the past and present cast, crew and writers of Star Trek, I wish only one thing:
Live long and prosper, no matter where you have boldly gone knowing you made a profound difference in a little girl’s outlook on the world.