For over a year I’ve been noticing and sometimes documenting the kinds of sexist, racist and homophobic comments that proliferate on the official Star Trek Facebook page (more examples of posts here).
And I kept hearing from followers: this is a serious issue…
DS9 never had the speeches that TNG or TOS did. It was a series that was more about action than words. This bit from Paradise Lost is fine example.
If you’re not aware, the Star Trek facebook page has been filled with fans spouting sexism, racism, & homophobic shit lately. The characters and actors from Star Trek are fine folks that deserve more than being treated as stereotyped cutouts.
This is the kind of good stuff Star Trek is about, not the messed-up stuff apparent fans are doing on the Star Trek facebook page.
In vein of today’s theme about regressive racism, sexism, and homophobia on the Star Trek facebook page.
After asking the same question about Sulu and having it go horribly awry, the StarTrek.com Facebook page decided to pull it again with Yar.
And it wasn’t quite as shocking, but it was hugely depressing. The vast majority of commenters described her as “dead”, followed by references to her having sex with Data in "The Naked Now", and “butch” or other more offensive references to her character being a lesbian.
Examples after the jump (Trigger Warning for sexist comments and rape jokes):
Really encouraged to see so many people starting to speak up about the issues on the official Star Trek Facebook page, and imagining the potential of positive change. The above is a selection of comments left on the Change.org petition for CBS and StarTrek.com to develop a comments policy to address the sexist, racist and homophobic comments on the Facebook page, and appoint moderators to enforce it.
So I was taking a break from doing work on my laptop,and decided to check the ST FB page again. It’s not like I want to expose myself to all the negativity and gross comments all the time, but I love it whenever someone defends the space ladies, or actually has a good,well-thought off answer to the questions posed. This time,they asked this:
To nobody’s surprise,people were listing characters like Seven because their hotness would somehow inspire them to get fit. There was a wonderful post by a fan,who spoke up and questioned the choice of pictures for the question. Sounds great,right? More people aren’t keeping quiet about how the page is a breeding ground for sexism! But then there replies came up…
The other day I posted a screencap of this StarTrek.com poll because I wasn’t sure what “fierce” was even supposed to mean.
My friend ea-p shared the poll and commented:
I don’t understand what these characters have in common, other than being women.
Tangentially I wondered why I…
TW for homophobic and racist comments
But I still wasn’t quite prepared for the sheer volume of people who chose to answer the above question with “gay”, “Asian”, or outright homophobic or racist slurs.
Sure, maybe not everyone intended to be racist by pointing out Sulu is “Asian”, but that just shows how we view people of colour as “other” whereas whiteness is invisible. I can’t imagine seeing the same question about, say, Tom Paris with so many people responding “White.”
Or “straight.” I think some of the people describing Sulu as “gay” are LGBT supporters who think it’s cool that Takei is an LGBT activist, but there were also clearly a whole bunch who thought answering “gay” was just funny, or took it several steps further:
And this guy replying to a commenter who said, “People who are so shallow to just see him as gay, without really understanding more about this complex person, are pretty sad”: