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 Roddenberry
Yesterday, my sister in law posted a very powerful message on Facebook about the protests in Charlottesville, Virginia and how upsetting they were to her and she has the most personal reason of all to be upset with these hate-filled morons who claim they speak for all white people (they don’t). You see, my sister in law and her husband have a daughter who is bi-racial. My niece is a gorgeous cafe aulait colored child with nut brown eyes and honey colored hair who is one of the spunkiest, funniest, most joy-filled and challenging children I’ve ever known. Just reading what my sister in law wrote, I was moved to tears. I didn’t even know what happened (I had to Google it) but I knew that once again, angry people with hearts full of hate and intolerance had been allowed to give voice to their tired rhetoric which should have been put down a long ass time ago. But of course, because they have the right to free speech, they’re allowed to spew their vitriol and their backwards ideas about “White rights” and “Standing up for the white people”.
We can’t go back and undo the past. We can’t go back and not take the country from the natives who lived here first. We can’t go back and undo the horrors and atrocities of a society built (literally) on the backs of black slaves. But we can try and move forward from that, treating people equally no matter what the color of their skin or their gender or their sexual orientation. Because on the inside, we are all the same.
I will always believe in a Star Trek future, where we are all treated equally. Where everybody is wanted and needed and skin color, gender, sexual orientation don’t matter. That’s the future I want for my child and my nieces and nephews. We may not get there in my lifetime or even theirs. But I believe some day, we will get there. We must.