Is STAR TREK: DISCOVERY really “WOKE”? What does “WOKE” even mean??? (editorial, part 2)

Last time, we began by taking a brief look at the history of the word “woke.” (You can read the full history here.) Although “woke” began as a positive word connoting being aware of racial injustice, in the last half-decade, “woke” has been co-opted into a toxic, negative insult, implying (from conservatives) an overly liberal and progressive view of race relations and inequality and (from liberals) an overcompensation to try to mitigate implied social injustice.

Whatever the meaning, some detractors of STAR TREK: DISCOVERY have begun to deploy the word “woke” in criticizing the show. But what exactly are they talking about? Is it the diversity of characters of different races, ethnicities, sexual orientations, and gender identities? Or is there something about the plots or the storytelling that is supposedly “woke”?

In order to get a better understanding of what the critics mean when they call Discovery “woke,” I reached out to fans on four different large-size Star Trek Facebook groups(this group, this group, this group, and this group) and asked for examples of what they consider “woke” beyond just the characters themselves.

Unfortunately, almost no one offered specific examples—only broad brush strokes which didn’t help define (for me, at least) what it was about Discovery (beyond the characters) that was “woke.” Indeed, the only specific complaints I received were a bit absurd: one person who thought there was way too much kissing and another who assumed, from watching the third season Discovery episode “People of Earth,” that “Africans took over Earth and do not welcome non-Africans home.” And among his proof was that Earth ships resembled elephants. (Seriously, I screen capped the comment!)

Yeah, they do kinda look like elephants…

Anyway, with nothing else that I could take seriously as an example of what made Discovery “woke,” I could only assume it was indeed some combination of the races/ethnicities of the actors and/or the sexual orientations/gender identities of the characters.

So I took a closer look at the actors themselves. There is a general perception out there among certain fans that Discovery portrays an overly diverse cast in terms of race and ethnicity. The bridge crew is certainly “colorful,” and the current main cast features two Blacks, one Hispanic, and one half-Asian. Of course, it also features four white actors (I still consider Tilly part of the main cast). That’s 50% white.

But I took it a step further and looked at the casting of ALL actors who’ve appeared with significant speaking roles in at least two episodes dating back to the start of the series. The results were staggeringly skewed toward white actors and actresses (35 total) versus Black actors (8 total) and those of Latino, Asian and other/unknown ethnicities (also 8 total).

So with 2/3 of the total actors on the show being white, why it is that so many viewers mistakenly believe that the Discovery cast is so much more diverse than it actually is…?


In psychology, there is a phenomenon known as salience. It evolved in humans as a way of dealing with the massive amounts of information coming into our brains simultaneously from our eyes, ears, nose, etc. Anything that seems “normal” can typically be ignored or given low importance. But something that stands out as unexpected or out of context gets our focus and attention. For example, a person wearing a Starfleet uniform at a sci-fi convention or on Halloween isn’t really noticed as unusual. Someone wearing a Starfleet uniform to jury duty or as a candidate on stage at a political debate would absolutely find themselves on the news…and likely be defined by that moment for the rest of their lives.

So with salience, sometimes “perception becomes reality,” even when it’s just plain wrong. For example, a particular brand of car might have the highest quality and reliability ratings from every automotive and consumer magazine. But if your friend bought one of these cars and had to trade it back in a few months later because he’d gotten a lemon, that is salient. And even if his replacement car worked just fine, you’d likely think twice about buying that brand of car, even though your friend’s experience was only one example and literally EVERYTHING else says this brand of car is reliable. Your brain just can’t ignore something so salient.

And so it is for Discovery. In my previous blog, I proved numerically (with an actual list) that this show features an overwhelming majority of white actors. And yet, a surprising number of people who have since commented on on Facebook that this series is mostly non-white actors. One went so far as to suggest I count the number of lines given to to the minority actors and I’d see they get much more to say. Considering that one of the white actors was Tilly (who talks a LOT) and two others were the first two white, male captains Lorca and Pike, Saru was quite prominent, and Paul Stamets gets about as many lines as Hugh Culber, it seems that this suggestion of counting lines was a bit of a desperation play hoping to “massage” reality in order to fit this person’s perception.

So yeah, it’s hard to ignore salience. The main character on the series is Black. That’s hard to ignore. The show started out showing two other Black characters as background regulars on the bridge (Ososekun and Bryce) and one Asian (Rhys). Burnham’s first captain on the Shenzou was Asian. That stood out to many viewers despite the fact that there were more WHITE actors on Discovery in the beginning: a white captain (Lorca), two white background regulars on the bridge (Detmer and Ariam), plus there was Saru, Stamets, and Tilly.


Ah, the kiss heard ’round the Trek world—talk about SALIENT! When Paul Stamets kissed Hugh Culber during the ninth episode of Discovery‘s first season, “Into the Forest I Go,” there was an outcry of both support and resistance. It was so controversial, in fact, that actor WILSON “Dr. Culber” CRUZ (who is gay in real life), posted this message to social media…

I’m not here for your comfort. That’s not why we are here. We’re here to grow. Star Trek is and has always been here to challenge you to look outside of yourself and to see other people and other experiences in yourself. There is no division between you and me. I am just another human giving and receiving love, just like you. That is all.

The kiss received quite a bit of coverage in the media, as this was the first time any Star Trek series had included two regular characters in a committed same-sex relationship. Trek had already featured a ton of ongoing heterosexual romances between regular characters on the various series: Worf and Troi, Riker and Troi, Miles and Keiko O’Brien, Ben Sisko and Kassidy Yates, Rom and Leeta, Worf and Jadzia, Bashir and Ezri, Kira and Odo, Neelix and Kes, Tom and B’Elanna, Chakotay and Seven (cringe!), and Trip and T’Pol.

But this was different. This was salient.

And here’s where salience creates a rather striking double-standard. In the four seasons of Star Trek: Discovery, the main character (Michael Burnham) has shared two heterosexual relationships: the first with Ash Tyler and now one with Cleveland Booker. We’ve also seen many other heterosexual couples on the show: Spock’s parents Sarek and Amanda, Michael’s parents, the Klingons VoQ and L’Rell, Christopher Pike and Vina, Captain Lorca and Admiral Cornwell, Ariam had a male fiancé, and if you want to be thorough, Harry Mudd and Stella. Heck, there’s even some serious flirting going on between Saru and Ni’Var President T’Rina in season four.

That’s a fair amount of straight couples on the show. And yet, no one has ever jumped up and accused Discovery of trying to openly promote a heterosexual lifestyle. But add in ONE gay couple and there’s suddenly some kind of liberal/pro-homosexual “woke” agenda? Fascinating!

“But they don’t have to throw it in our faces every episode!” I’m sure some people will say (and many have on Facebook). But again, salience is creating a false perception. Just out of curiosity, I fast-forwarded through the most recent 20 episodes of Discovery (all of seasons three and four so far). Do you know how many times over the past two seasons that Paul and Hugh have kissed on the lips? Take a guess before reading on.

>>> guessing break <<<

The answer is three (season 3, episodes 2, 8 and 11). Yep, just three. In that same span of episodes, if you’re curious, Michael and Book have kissed on the lips twice (season 3, episodes 6 and 7). Interestingly, NO COUPLE has kissed on the lips at all in season four so far…although Paul and Hugh have had two scenes (in season four) that included small pecks on the cheek. And if we want to extend things out to any kind of outward shows of affection (including hand-holding, gentle caresses, supportive touching, hugs, and scenes in bed together, the season four total is Michael/Book: 9 and Paul/Hugh: 5.

And so, just for the record: no, Discovery is NOT throwing homosexuality in our faces any more than it is throwing heterosexuality in our faces. Paul and Hugh have been involved in some plots involving their relationship and some plots highlighting other aspects of their characters like engineer and doctor, genius and compassionate, spore drive pilot and haunted back-from-the-dead guy, etc…just as Miles and Keiko O’Brien had storylines involving their marriage and role as parents along with plots featuring them as an engineer and teacher.

And yet, certain viewers still gripe that a lone gay couple feels like it’s been “forced” into the show as a way of filling some liberal quota and only exists in order to tell “gay” stories. It’s an interesting complaint, and in my opinion, far from accurate since Paul and Hugh had SO much more to do than just kiss and brush their teeth together in their pajamas.

But salience keeps some people from noticing all the times that Paul and Hugh are on screen separately, not kissing, and playing important roles in the stories that DON’T involve their relationship.


Let’s move on to the “other” LGBTQIA+ space couple: Adira and Gray. (And if anyone is curious, they’ve only kissed once—season 3, episode 4—in a flashback to just before Gray Tal died.) Now, it should be understood that gender identity is a totally different phenomenon than sexual preference. So I am treating Adira and Gray completely separately from Paul and Hugh except for grouping them together under the general category of LGBTQIA+.

Actor BLU DEL BARRIO identifies as non-binary (doesn’t feel male or female), and their character is the same way. This fact was dealt with quickly during a single scene in a third season episode called “Sanctuary” when Adira asks Paul to use the pronoun “they/their/them,” and Paul says, “Okay.”

That was that. One scene.

And while the episodes since have featured a couple of times when Adira was referred to as “they” or “them,” no one on the show has ever made a big deal out of it, just as no one on the show makes a big deal out of Paul and Hugh being gay…and no one on TOS ever made a big deal about Uhura being Black or female.

In fact, the only folks involved with Discovery who ever made a big deal out of having a non-binary actor and a transgender actor (IAN ALEXANDER as Gray) were the folks in marketing who did a minor publicity blitz before introducing the two new characters in season three. There wasn’t an incredible amount of coverage, but it was enough to get fans’ attention…and that means (say it with me) salience! And suddenly, Star Trek: Discovery was all about including gay characters and trans characters and non-binary characters…

Except that it wasn’t.

Sure, it’s hard not to notice that four of the main characters are part of the LGBTQIA+ community, and that’s nearly half of the main characters on the show. On the other hand, if you look at my character list from the previous blog, out of more than 50 characters who have appeared in at least two episodes, only two other characters are gay: Jett Reno and Ruon Tarka, the super-genius looking to cross into a parallel universe (note: Tarka isn’t “officially” gay yet; it’s only been implied).

No one else is officially “outed” yet. And amusingly, if you pay close attention, at no point has Gray ever been officially revealed as trans as a character…not in the same way that Adira has been. Obviously, the Tal symbiont has lived as both male and female, but so have Dax and most other Trill. So even though the actor is tans, the character of Gray might not be.

So again, our brains tend to ignore a plethora of straight characters and pay attention primarily to just four LGBTQIA+ plus characters, even though they are in a very small minority overrall. But for some, it’s enough to cry “woke.” After all, not only is there a gay couple, but there is ALSO a non-binary character and a trans actor. That’s a lot of ticked boxes, right? So some are asking: does the show really need to represent so many “token” groups?

Of course, one could ask the same question about TOS: did it really need to include a Black AND an Asian on the bridge? Wouldn’t one have been enough?

And that brings us to…


The original “woke” characters?

In the end, I’m probably not going to change the minds of those who complain the Discovery is “woke.” Whether it’s psychological salience or just needing to air another grievance, “wokeness” will remain in the eye of the beholder for now. But in my opinion, Discovery is NOT “woke”…


And that, my friends, is why Discovery is such an important TV series—whether you like the writing or not. In the same way that TOS set a new television standard by having both a Black woman and an Asian in prominent positions on the bridge, in the same way that Deep Space Nine distinguished itself by casting a Black man as the star and Voyager by giving the center seat to a woman captain—Discovery is setting itself apart (in what I feel is a very good way) by letting these characters of color, of gender, and of sexual preference be seen simply as NORMAL PEOPLE who are part of a starship crew, doing their jobs and helping to tackle challenges.

Sure, there’s still a long way to go (the casting is still 2/3 white), but what is most important is that, in the future that these Star Trek series are showing us, it’s no big deal that Michael is Black, Georgiou is Chinese, Paul and Hugh are a same-sex couple, or that Adira wants to be referred to as “they”…just as it was no big deal on the original Enterprise that a Black woman like Lt. Uhura was chief of communications.

For anyone criticizing Discovery for being “woke,” consider all of the people watching this series who are not straight and white and/or cisgendered. Think about what it means for them to see representatives of their race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or gender identity featured regularly on a major television series with as long and honored a pedigree as Star Trek.

And these aren’t simply one-note characters (the gay one, the non-binary one, the Black one). But at the same time, those aspects of the characters aren’t “invisible” either. Paul and Hugh are gay, they show affection toward each other just like any other couple (like Michael and Book), but they also have much more to do on the show beyond that. The NORMALCY of all of these characters is what makes Discovery so important.

Back in the 1960s, a generation of Black women and Asians looked at NICHELLE NICHOLS and GEORGE TAKEI on their television screens with hope and optimism for a better world. Today, Star Trek: Discovery represents that same hope for so many people around the globe who aren’t white or aren’t straight or don’t feel like they fit a binary label like “male” or “female.”

Respect that. Please don’t cheapen that optimism with a vague and dismissive insult like “woke.”

26 thoughts on “Is STAR TREK: DISCOVERY really “WOKE”? What does “WOKE” even mean??? (editorial, part 2)”

  1. Nice diatribe ‍♂️

    The issue is not character based.

    It is plot based.

    In this contemporary environment “ wokeness if you wish”

    Everyone who is not white and conventionally straight is a victim and has some drama to deal with

    The dramas lack substances they feel like a whining child looking for comfort as apposed to a child solving a problem with courage and optimism and succeeding with a sense of moving positively

    It is the fault of writers not the characters or the situational challenges

    “Picard” is better written
    “Prodigy” is better written
    And for that matter so is
    “Lower Decks”

    But all of this including your article are just opinion

    1. I’d like to respond to you, Robert, but I have to be honest, I didn’t follow the points you were trying to make. If you’d like to elaborate, please feel free. I agree that Picard, Prodigy, and Lower Decks are better written than Discovery (in general), but I’m not sure who is the whining child you refer to (the writers? the characters? people who call the show “woke”?) and what exactly they are whining about rather than solving. I’m happy to read a more detailed explanation if you’d like to submit one.

  2. Hmmm… seems you completely overlooked two other “non hetero” references in TNG and DS9! (I’m surprised, since this is about “salient” moments!) 😉 The DS9 episode is where Jadzia encounters another female Trill, who has a symbiont that her Dax was married to (hetero) some years ago in other hosts. The two women shared a significant (salient) on-screen kiss. Then there was an episode of TNG, where Commander Riker falls in love with a member of a somewhat xenophobic “gender neutral” species… that character gave a “speech” before being “lobotomized” near the end of the show that sounded very similar to things once said by a group that called themselves “Act-Up” back in the 90’s. “WOKE” before it was even a word? 😉

    1. Well, I did mention “The Outcast” in Part 1 and showed an image of the DS9 “lesbian kiss” in that same blog. But I left both of those out of this blog because I was focusing solely on ongoing relationships between primary cast members. That’s why I left out Picard and Beverly Crusher…because they were only really together in the series finale in a possible future. I also left out any of Riker’s, Geordi’s, Data’s, Deanna’s, or even Tasha or Wesley’s one-episode trysts. Waaaaaay too many to list. I focused on the multi-episode/multi-season romances like Worf and Jadzia, Tom and B’Elanna, and Trip and T’Pol…to name but a few! 🙂

      1. Salient… conspicuous by their absence. 😉 OK, you refreshed my memory… they were mentioned before. I was confining my comments to THIS article, tho. 🙂

  3. So for some reason, you either missed or ignored the reality of why the Culber/Stamets kiss is unlike any of the others that you’ve listed… both Stamets and Culber are senior officers who have on multiple occasions displayed public displays of affection *while on duty in front of other officers.*

    That is a no-no and almost certainly a violation of Starfleet policy, just like it would be in today’s armed services and in most public and private workplaces.

    It’s worth noting that in all the examples from other Trek series you’ve listed here, the situations are not the same. Riker/Troi have never kissed while on duty in front of other officers, nor have any of the other couples you mention. If they did (like when Kirk kissed Uhura), it was as the result of being under alien mind control or in a warped reality. For over 50 years of Star Trek, we have seen consistently that any public displays of affection between crew members were PRIVATE encounters unless there was a plot reason.

    THIS is why Discovery is guilty of “lazy writing.” Not because two men kissed, but because both of these characters are veteran officers who know the rules and mores on a Federation starship and knew better than to do this in the first place. Scenes like this demonstrate that the writers are putting their own preferences above the logic that has been created in the world of Star Trek. If Stamets was straight and kissed Detmer while they were on the bridge, many of us would have thrown something at the screen just as hard as we did when it was Stamets and Culber… because it doesn’t track. It isn’t real (in so far as any of this is “real”). Things like this diminish both of the their characters by making them look either stupid or undisciplined – neither of which do Starfleet officers make and people are right to object to it, even if they are objecting for the wrong reasons (which most seem to be).

    What I find odd here is that you haven’t bothered to address this as a possible reason why viewers might have objected to the scene(s). Surely you realized when Culber and Stamets kissed that say, Captain Picard, would never have tolerated public displays of affection on board the Enterprise – regardless of what gender the officers were. It is almost laughable to me that anyone on board the Enterprise would have even entertained doing something like this in the first place. But Stamets & Culber? They just can’t help themselves, apparently. And yet, you chose to make this be about them being same-sex instead of being bad officers.


      1. Captain’s prerogative, which neither Stamets or Culber have, but since you brought it up…

        How do we know for sure that anyone even saw Kirk and Shaw kiss? There were no reaction shots or acknowledgement that it was seen and they were standing behind everyone, out of their sightlines. Spock and McCoy’s comments at the end only seem suggestive because of the music cue. At the very least, Kirk and Shaw addressed a possible controversy and they were discreet… neither of which Stamets and Culber have done.

        We know from VOY that crew relationships and fraternization are controversial when Chakotay catches two crew members kissing in “Elogium” and in a first season ep of DIS, First Officer Burnham finds celebrating with her crew members to be inappropriate because of her rank. And Picard’s penchant for not letting his hair down (yep I said it) was legendary all the way until the series finale and we all remember how he struggled not to reveal his relationship with Commander Darren.

        Again… the issue isn’t whether crew members and officers are ALLOWED to have personal relationships, it’s the context by which they express them while on duty. Do you have any other clips to er… “prove” your point or is this the only one out of 800+ episodes and 13 movies spanning over 50 years?

        1. Well, since you asked…

          Kira, the second in command of the space station, and Odo kiss passionately in front of everyone on the Promenade, including Starfleet officers and civilians:

          Worf and Troi begin kissing in the corridor in front of other crew members in the corridor:

          Tom kisses B;’Elanna in the corridor right in front of the open doorway to a packed mess hall:

          T’Pol, the second in command, kisses Trip, the third in command, in the middle of a public corridor:

          Scotty holds and consoles Lt. Mira Romaine the briefing room for nearly three minutes in front of the three main senior officers:

          And because you opened it up to all 13 films, let’s include Spock and Uhura kissing in the turbolift while both are on duty:

          But I really need to get back to blogging now. 🙂

          1. Nice try, but your examples are inapplicable to the point I (and Willie) are making.

            * Odo/Kira kiss – neither are Starfleet officers or bound by their rules of conduct. DS9 is a Bajoran civilian facility administered by Starfleet. Truth be told, Odo probably wrote himself up for this after it happened!

            * Worf/Troi kiss – They are not seen by the crew. Picard arrives after the fact in a panic and doesn’t seem to have even noticed.

            * Tom/B’elanna kiss – They are not seen by the crew.

            * Trip/T’Pol kiss – No one is present in the corridor. They are not seen by the crew.

            * Scotty is consoling a traumatized victim while Kirk attempts to get information from her. There is no sexual context here.

            * Spock/Uhura kiss – Aside from the fact that this was from JJ Abrams who ignores many Star Trek stylistic norms… they are alone in the turbo lift and not seen by the crew.

            I maintain that Stamets and Culber’s PDA was inappropriate and unprofessional – and not because they were gay. Had they kissed in the corridor or turbolift when no one was around, it would be totally fine. The fact that the Discovery showrunners deliberately chose to have them deeply kiss in front of their subordinates is virtue signaling at the expense of the show’s premise and the world of the story. They deserve to be called out for it and we shouldn’t pretend that this was “the same” as these other moments in Star Trek because it clearly wasn’t. Both Stamets and Culber deserved to be reprimanded for their actions and whether Starfleet is a military organization or a scientific organization is a moot point – both would frown on their behavior.

            You can go back to blogging now.

          2. You really seem to need to win this argument. I frankly don’t care, as I’ve made all my points and wasted quite a bit of time doing so.

            So…you win. Congratulations. Have a Fresca. 🙂

      2. That scene immediately popped into my head as I read the above comment. However, she specifically asked if DISCIPLINE would BREAK DOWN… and of course, it didn’t. 😉 But notice how quickly, once the turbolift doors closed, Captain Kirk became “All Business” as he walked back to his chair. SHE ASKED… and Kirk being Kirk, couldn’t refuse such a request from an attractive woman. Regardless. 😉 So, I believe that this clip actually reaffirms what “Guardian” commented, above! With Kirk, it was just a quick little smooch, and done. Now, for two Senior Officers, “getting it on” while on duty, and in full view of fellow officers & crew is definitely cause for discipline in the Military! Ask anyone who has served, what the policy is for “P.D.A.” in the Military.

        1. And yet, what is the rule for P.D.A.s on the International Space Station? I’m not sure there are any (maybe I’m wrong?). Because when all is said and done, Starfleet isn’t completely military. It’s a hybrid of paramilitary, science, diplomacy, and space exploration. As such, we really have no idea what the regulations are about fraternizing on duty or in the corridors. Obviously, there were couples on board the various ships and space stations. Heck, Kirk almost performed a marriage ceremony in “Balance of Terror.” Scotty had a couple of girlfriends on board, McCoy flirted in “Shore Leave.” Worf and Troi got together, Geordi flirted, Data dated, Trip and T’Pol were hot and heavy, Tom got B’Elanna preggers, and don’t get me started on the Delaney sisters! And of course, the Enterprise-D and Saratoga (and DS9) included families. You can’t expect no hanky panky on a five-year (or 70,000 light-year) mission. So the question is simply, can you be openly affectionate outside of your quarters or an unused Jeffries tube? Based on Worf and Troi’s kiss in “All Good Things” and Tom’s and B’Elanna’s outside on the mess hall, I think such things are, in fact, allowed.

          1. Worf and Troi DIDN’T KISS! They were about to, when Captain Picard interrupted. 😉 Like I suggested earlier, ask someone who has served (or is serving) in the Military, about their policy regarding PDA. (Public Display of Affection.) OK, so Tom and B’Elanna were MARRIED. There may be some “small exceptions” for married couples. What did we ever see them do? Little kiss here or there. Making their baby happened in their quarters, or the holodeck (with the door locked) or a shuttlecraft… point being, they were ALONE together. 😉 (Same with any/all of the other married couples mentioned or not, in all the various Trek stories.) In a hallway with nobody else around? Isn’t exactly a PUBLIC DISPLAY, either. 🙂 The ISS? Really? LOL! It’s not a very big place, and not very PRIVATE, either. 😉 Your “bedroom” is a cloth “closet” that is hooked to a wall. You zip it closed, and you sleep inside… so you don’t float around and bump into something. 😉 Flirting/dating, etc… were they “getting it on” on the BRIDGE? 😉 As for the level of military aspects in Trek, it is very Naval in their structure, rank, etc… and MOST of the characters we know and love are OFFICERS. 🙂

          2. The original series was very naval, but by TNG and DS9, we were dealing with venues that included families…which doesn’t have an equivalent in naval deployments at sea. So we need to assume that there would be some differences. Also, it’s not as though Paul and Hugh are jumping each other’s bones right there in engineering or on the bridge or turrbolift. They don’t do more than kiss affectionately, most of the time just little pecks on the cheek. The one exception (remember: salience makes you think it happens more often than it really does) was the big “An Officer and a Gentleman” set-up for their first big kiss in engineering…but that was the equivalent of Odo and Kira’s first kiss on the Promenade. And things cooled down quite a bit publicly after that (as they so often do). 🙂

  4. First, thank you reducing so-called wokeness to numbers that make it (hopefully) easy for anyone with even a little objectivity to see that Discovery isn’t pushing a racial diversity, sexual orientation or gender identity “woke” message.
    I did notice, however, that you used the term “sexual preference” when comparing sexual orientation to gender identity. Preference implies choice: today I’d prefer soy milk to almond milk in my coffee. Sexual preference implies that one can choice between male, female and/an or trans persons as the whim hits them which is not the case with most LGBTQIA+ people (pansexual persons might be considered the exception). Sexual orientation is a better way to describe one’s attraction to others, IMO, as it implies a more fixed state of being.

    1. I thought about that, but then I thought about my son’s godmothers. They are two women who dated men exclusively before meeting, falling in love with each other, getting married, and having three wonderful children (one of which is my goddaughter and another is my wife’s godson). They often joke that, if one of them ever died, the other would go back to men in an instant. Neither even considers herself bisexual or a lesbian (although, technically, both are). They still are both still primarily attracted to men. They just happen to love each other very much and share a sexual relationship, as well.

      Anyway, I see sexual orientation and sexual preference (and I used both in the blog) as “covering all bases.” In the end, I could probably have even said “orientation/preference” but the blog was already more than 2700 words long! 🙂

  5. I was particularly intrigued by the Human Cadet in that Tilly episode (Sorry, I can’t be bothered to be more specific). It was really interesting to learn that her fellow cadets were the first non-human sentient beings she’d ever met. That’s fascinating to me, from a Star Trek perspective, and maybe we’ll see more of her character. I think it falls into that whole, “out of your comfort-zone” mentality that we have in the 21st century; in order to become a better person you need to expose yourself to a fair amount of dissonance that challenge your preconceived notion.

  6. Hmmm… “Guardian” made some more very good points. I would add a few more salient points, too… but you just made it clear that you don’t care. So… with that… I guess we’re done here. :/ I’ll show myself out…

    Live Long and Blog On. 😉

    1. Eventually, you just have to realize you’re dealing with someone who needs to be right at all costs. I used to be like that myself, which is why I conceded the point. Time to move on.

    1. And…?

      To me, the article is kind of like Ebony magazine calling DS9 the Blackest Star Trek yet because three members of the main cast—Ben Sisko, Jake Sisko, and Worf—are each played by Black actors. Yes, it’s certainly something to admire in a show when, at the time, Black cast members were primarily there to play token characters. Try to find a Black actor on “Friends” or “Seinfeld” or “Frasier” or even “E.R.” at the time. “E.R.” began with ONE Black series regular, added a second in season two (along with a few more white actors), and then didn’t add a third Black cast member until season 5 (1998…two years after DS9 added Worf).

      What I’m trying to say is that touting Discovery as the “queer” Star Trek is almost self-defeating. None of these characters are defined solely by their LGBTQIA+ status…just as the Siskos weren’t defined solely by their Blackness (or “brownness,” as Avery Brooks preferred to say). Indeed, the fact that all of the characters on Star Trek (gay, straight, trans, cis, nonbinary, Black, white, Asian, Latino, whatever) are so much more than their race, gender, ethnicity, gender identity, and/or sexual preference says so much more than simply including the characters in the first place.

Comments are closed.