Talk:Star Trek franchise

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Do you have episode sources for the Klingons and Ferangi religions? It seems it may have been mentioned, but wasn't a major part of the focus such as with the first two examples.

One of the difficulties with the series is that there is nothing approaching the God of monotheism. The religions are seen as false and stupid, ignorant people worshipping living entities who they don't understand. Learn together 13:48, 2 October 2007 (EDT)

The people aren't normally seen as ignorant or stupid. They respect freedom of religion. There are many points where the prophets in the Bajoran religion actually intervene. Although the ethiest charecters likely dismiss them as powerful wormhole aliens. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Double Edge (talk) circa. 31st October 2007.

Contents

Religion

At one point when Captain Picard dies and goes to the "afterlife" he makes a comment "The Universe is not so badly run."

I believe this is a reference to the episode "Tapestry", where Picard dies and goes to the afterlife only to find Q. His comment is not against religion, but rather an attack on Q.

—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Mgroop (talk)

It is an attack on Q. But suggesting that the universe is run means that he is not an ethiest.

Double Edge

I'm inclined to disagree. How well it's "run" is probably just a euphemism, not a direct indication that he believes that it is run as such. It could also be making point on the assumption that it's "run", which would be the case if Q was in charge, i.e. merely refuting Q's claim within Q's assumptions, but without necessarily accepting those assumptions. In other words, I don't think you can draw that much out of that comment. Incidentally, I changed to wording of that part to reflect this just before reading this talk page! Philip J. Rayment 01:19, 24 December 2007 (EST)
Having not watched TNG in quite some time and never having the fondness for it that I did for the original, I've been reluctant to access that area of my brain, but a couple of thoughts do come to mind. When was it ever stated that Q ran the universe? He was an observer of the universe, and he would play with various parts of it, but I never picked up the idea that he was in any way responsible for running it or in charge of it. Also, there is an episode where the Enterprise is trapped in a section of space with an entity that is going to experiment on them to see what different forms of death are like; it would take about half the crew. There is a discussion between the captain and 'Ryker' and 'Troi' (actually the alien) about whether or not Piccard believes in God, and he states something to the effect that he does because the universe is just a bit too orderly otherwise. TNG accepts the existence of God, but it's the concept of a personal God where He has revealed Himself that is harshly denigrated in other episodes. Learn together 12:42, 8 January 2008 (EST)
I don't recall the Q episode very well, but the article says that Q implied that he ran the universe. It would be typical of Q to claim or imply something like that, simply because Q was loose with the truth like that. The "statement" was probably nothing more than Q grandstanding. Philip J. Rayment 17:55, 8 January 2008 (EST)

Learn together changed:

Roddenberry rarely had the shows overtly reject religion, seeming instead to simply ignore it.

to:

Roddenberry rarely had the shows overtly reject religion, but would make reference to it as a part of culture.

followed by some examples of references to religion.

Now, I'm not criticising the edit, but I do wonder... Do we know whether this was Roddenberry's doing, or perhaps the initiative of the writer(s)? What I'm suggesting (and a suggestion is all that it is) is that one or more writers introduced these religious references, and because they were not overtly promoting Christianity, Roddenberry didn't object to them. If my suggestion is correct, then perhaps the article should reflect that somehow.

Yeah, I suppose I could do some research and see if Roddenberry wrote any of those episodes, or see if they all had the same writer, but I thought that someone else might have some idea on this.

Philip J. Rayment

I have no personal knowledge. To be safe we could remove the mention to Roddenberry specifically and replace it with more generic wording. Learn together 12:42, 8 January 2008 (EST)
I've made the wording more generic. Philip J. Rayment 17:55, 8 January 2008 (EST)

ChrisSmith's edit

I consider this edit to be parody, but will hold off reverting it in case someone thinks that there is something that can be salvaged from it. Philip J. Rayment 23:00, 17 August 2008 (EDT) (Administrator)

Hrm, I didn't intend for it to come across as "parody", but maybe it was a little enthusiastic. I think removing all of the content was a little far - I was wondering why there's no mention of the clear socialist ideals of the show: working towards the betterment of humanity, with no money etc. If this isn't left-wing I don't know what is. ChrisSmith 18:40, 18 August 2008 (EDT)
You think working towards the benefit of humanity is left-wing? Interesting. Most of us on this site would consider that to be a conservative idea. The difficulty with liberals is that if there is a hole in a boat that is causing water to come in, they believe the appropriate action is to keep shoveling out the water - and leave the hole.
As far as Star Trek goes, the show is humanistic, showing a society that has gone beyond consumption difficulties, racial differences, entitlements, or national infighting. Democracy has prevailed and merit rules. Kirk isn't the captain based on a lottery system. He is the captain based upon years of hard work and ability. There is nothing in those idea that is liberal. Learn together 09:39, 19 August 2008 (EDT)
(Edit conflict with Learn together) What's left-wing about working toward the betterment of humanity? Rather, that is a Christian thing to do (e.g. most charities have been started by Christians; Christians donate more than non-believers). Besides, the article did already mention that aspect:
As a humanist, Gene Roddenberry infused Star Trek with humanism's dream of a world (or galaxy in this case) where humanity (and many other intelligent beings) were constantly improving the life quality of all beings both through improving technology and improving societal conditions. People worked together for the common good, rather than for money, and without any class or other distinctions. This is a small part of what is expected in the Christian view of heaven, except that humanism believes that mankind can achieve this through its own efforts, rather than with the help of God.
The point is, they are not (exclusively) socialist values. They are also Christian values. The difference (apart from the one mentioned) is that socialists want to impose these values on others; Christians want to do them out of love.
Philip J. Rayment 09:50, 19 August 2008 (EDT)
Ok, I can accept that :) thanks for being so civil. ChrisSmith 14:59, 19 August 2008 (EDT)

Make this an overview article

Although this article starts off talking about the original series, much of it is talking about the whole "Star Trek universe". I was thinking that we ought to have a separate "Star Trek universe" (or similar) article and make this one just about the original series, but now think that perhaps this article should be about the whole Star Trek universe and that we should create a separate Star Trek (original series) or similar article. Thoughts? Philip J. Rayment 10:15, 19 September 2008 (EDT)

By the way, lacking any objection, I did this. Philip J. Rayment 03:23, 12 October 2008 (EDT)

Transpose tables?

I would like to swap the axes of the two tables under the heading The series and films. That is, have the titles down the left instead of along the top. Is there any objection to this? Philip J. Rayment 03:23, 12 October 2008 (EDT)

There being no objection, I've transposed them. Philip J. Rayment 08:08, 8 November 2008 (EST)

Remove relationship views?

Just though that we might remove the section about relationship views since it really is a minor part of the whole Star Trek universe in terms of the different series. Star Trek was always about openness and never really but a huge emphasis on relationships, in whatever form it was.

Politics?

I see that an edit describing Star Trek as politically liberal was recently reverted but I don't think it's necessarily untrue. Star Trek made/makes many political commentaries and is generally considered a liberal show (promotes one world government, frowns upon capitalism, etc) so I think it might be worth adding a politics section to this article. I'm not enough of a Trekkie to be an authority on the subject however, so would anyone else like to take this up? WilcoxD 00:26, 12 March 2013 (EDT)

On the topics of the political views of this show.

Now, I do not want to cause a fuss here, but I watched a few reruns of this show recently, and it seems to be very influenced by leftist elements, did some digging, and found some members of the cast and crew, were in fact, liberals. This did influence the show in large, but mostly unseen ways. Example: the world (or universe) of star trek seems to be heavily influence by communism. The government seems to be in the model of Marx's communist manifesto. Now, the focus of the show is on Kirk and his crew, so we as the viewer do not see this too often, but I feel it should be addressed in the article. Perhaps it is addressed in an episode I have not seen myself. Please post your answers or opinions to this. Thanks. RKelly 16:46, 18 December 2013 (EST)

Also addressing the other co mentor above me, I feel that the show's Politics should be addressed in the article. perhaps we could see the edit and confirm it's validity and change whatever is wrong with it. RKelly 16:49, 18 December 2013 (EST)

I think it would be good to include something on the franchise's politics. That's kind of what the project is all about. But it's simplistic to reduce its ideology to "liberal", "communist", or any other one-word description. The shows were produced over many years, by a diverse group of people, and with little emphasis on ideological consistency. Some shows claim that the Federation does not use money, while others give prices in "credits." Various characters and peoples can be identified as ideological stand-ins: The Ferengi represent capitalism, the Borg are ultra-socialist, and Khan Noonien Singh is a genetically superior Nazi/Aryan. In the Cold War-based episodes, the Federation, the Klingons, and the Romulans stand in for the U.S., Russia, and China. This essay may be a good place to start. PeterKa 21:39, 18 December 2013 (EST)
This article describes how Star Trek characters run various businesses, even though they have no need for money. So the Federation's economic system can be described as "capitalism for the fun of it." This may not be a realistic view of human nature, but it is definitely not Marxism. PeterKa 23:41, 18 December 2013 (EST)

Fair point. But I was asking if this should be put in the article. I did not want to edit it without discussing the implications of this topic first. Thanks. RKelly 23:42, 20 December 2013 (EST)

I don't have a sense of what it is you want to write about. The political views of the cast and the crew? If the key grip was a Communist, why would anyone care? But you can go ahead and write what you want to write. If someone doesn't like it, they can change it. PeterKa 14:13, 21 December 2013 (EST)

That is exactly what I want to write about. Politics was a focus of the show, and the politics of the show was influenced by the opinions of the crew. This website is an encyclopedia, so I feel it should be put in. RKelly 20:10, 25 December 2013 (EST)

My suggestions...
In this article concentrate on brief descriptions of the franchise as a whole, and what effect they have had on popular culture, technological innovation, religious, political, and personal influence. It did focus on politics somewhat, but that was in my opinion a sideshow to the fact that it was a primarily a show about exploration and encounters with alien worlds, i.e. an adventure show. That's not to say that Gene Roddenberry didn't make a statement; for example, the kiss between Kirk and Uhura was intended to be as much an attack against established racism as it was to be a fixed plot line in the episode "Plato's Children".
Do a "history of Star Trek" as a separate article; what influenced Gene Roddenberry to create the show; what influenced the creation of the sequels and the films?
Create separate articles on each of the series, especially TOS. Karajou 20:46, 25 December 2013 (EST)

The Quark video

I would interpret this video as Quark expressing love-hate feelings toward the Federation. There nothing in it clarifying what kind of government or economy the Federation might have. It’s just one of many scenes where these issues are evaded. The Federation represents “the good guys,” not an ideology like big government that would make it divisive with viewers. If the show presents the Federation as above ideology, then it is. There is no class warfare issue in Trek, so it is misleading to describe the Ferengi as “evil capitalists.” The Ferengi are usually depicted simply as unpleasant money grubbers. There are even several episodes where they are depicted sympathetically. In the Trek universe, the epitome of evil is the Borg collective, which is clearly socialist. PeterKa 09:55, 6 January 2014 (EST)

The scene has always bugged me. Feel free to disagree. People argue it's about assimilation, how everyone wants to live in America, but I see sermonizing about how the Ferengi (undeniable capitalist caricatures) will inevitably want to give up their way of life. JohnBD 11:41, 6 January 2014 (EST)
Sisko demands that Quark remain on the station. Regardless, the Feringi are more swindlers than capitalists. True capitalism relies on the principals of fair business, ethics, consumer understanding. In the technological world of Star Trek, energy is basically unlimited and furthermore seems to be able to be converted directly into structured matter through replicators, additionally, the capacity to travel beyond the speed of light makes land and resources virtually unlimited as well. If such technology were actually to exist, then the fundamental underlying principle of economics would be changed as scarcity would simply not really be relevant anymore except when it came to holodeck time, sex, and pet animals and other non-material commodities that otherwise can't be replicated. With scarcity pretty much non-existent, money would simply pretty much cease to be. The Borg isn't socialist - it's simply the embodiment of anything and everything that swallows humans through complete domination of the mind. They could be compared to some Communist countries, some religious movements, and even Ancient Rome (Rome might be one of the better comparisons - extremely imperialistic, conquered any and all cultures and brought them into compliance with the Roman state, forced them through violence to submit to Roman culture, believed that some people were inherently suited only to be used as slaves and needed overlords to guide them). I don't think the Borg are meant to be compared to any real political systems. They are an ant/bee colony - there's one episode of Voyager where a man whose world was destroyed by the Borg is upset that Janeway made a deal with the Borg and he's infuriated at her because he says she had a choice but that hating the Borg is like hating a hurricane - comparing them to a force of nature. The Borg represent any and all philosophies and ideologies that conquer and function by destroying the individual and that's not limited to Communists. Tollerson 02:50, 10 November 2014 (EST)
"Collective" is a left-wing word. This is what led me to conclude that the Borg is a stand in for socialism. Fascists emphasizes the "leader principle," "the triumph of the will," and the "Faustian [heroic] inventor." So the individual human intelligence plays a major role. Numbering the members of the collective reminds me of Mao's project to number the Chinese peasants, although that reference might not be intentional. Collective leadership is big in the communist systems, but unknown in fascism. In DS9, the Ferengi follow the "Rules of Acquisition." So they are not always swindlers. PeterKa 19:47, 12 November 2014 (EST)
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