Monday, May 24, 2004

The Sudden Relevance of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

Frequent readers of CRM know that I am a major, science-fiction geek. Given this, I have been enjoying the re-runs of DS9 on Spike, and that is the only thing I have enjoyed on Spike. The rest of the channel is drek dedicated to the exploitation of men and women. It exploits men by convincing them that being a pig is acceptable behavior; it exploits women by making them the target of piggish behavior. But that is for another post.

For those unfamiliar with DS9, the story revolves around the liberation of Bajor from the Cardassian Empire and the re-building of Bajor and the restoration of their culture. Starfleet enters into the picture to help defend the people of Bajor. During the occupation of Bajor, the inhabitants opposed the Cardassian presence through acts of civil disobedience and terrorism. And did I mention that slave labor was employed to build both the space station and to process ore from the planet?

It is ironic that this series should come back now as the people of our fair land debate and argue, and some even die, to defend a people and to restore justice -- at least this is the theory in play.

Throughout the history of the Star Trek franchise, various species are meant to represent political or philosophical models. But the question that haunts and troubles me is: are we the Bajorians or the Cardassians? It might be too easy to think of ourselves as Starfleet.

No comments: