‘Star Trek’ resistance is futile, even in the Vatican

‘Star Trek’ resistance is futile, even in the Vatican

[Hat-tip to Canon212]

By David Gibson | 9/8/16

(RNS) Accolades for “Star Trek” are filling the internet on the 50th anniversary of the television show’s premiere back in 1966, and now the pope’s newspaper has joined the chorus of hosannas for one of the most popular franchises in entertainment history.

But the brief homage by Giuseppe Fiorentino, second-in-command at L’Osservatore Romano, is not so much about the show’s artistic merits as it is about the message that “Star Trek” conveyed to a world afflicted by so many tensions – a world much like the present day.

“Millions of people loved the intergalactic adventures of Captain Kirk and his faithful crew because during those years of the Cold War – while builders of atomic bomb shelters were raking in money, especially in the U.S. – ‘Star Trek’ presented a model of true cooperation,” Fiorentino writes in Friday’s edition of the Vatican daily, which was on Roman newsstands late Thursday (Sept. 8).

The goal of the voyages of the Starship Enterprise, Fiorentino says, was to discover new civilizations and “propose peaceful relations on the basis of equality.”

In that mission, Kirk was assisted by a crew of racially and ethnically diverse people from Earth but also by aliens, most famously Mr. Spock, who had a Vulcan father and a human mother.

While such diversity “might seem completely normal” today, Fiorentino writes, the 1960s were an era of domestic upheaval and racial tension in the U.S. and acrimonious relations with the Soviet Union and its allies.

By dealing with such themes, Fiorentino writes, “Star Trek” was “an interstellar journey that was completely human, that is, searching for new ways to understand ourselves – a journey that we must always be undertaking.”

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3 comments on “‘Star Trek’ resistance is futile, even in the Vatican

  1. By dealing with such themes, Fiorentino writes, “Star Trek” was “an interstellar journey that was completely human, that is, searching for new ways to understand ourselves – a journey that we must always be undertaking.”

    Star Trek: The Introspection. Spock reveals man to himself!



  2. Captain Kirk: Mister Spock! Star Trek and Vatican II… analyze using your usual superior Vulcan logic which we no longer call “superior” out of concerns not to be accused of excessive rigidity and neo-Pelagian triumphalism….



    Spock: Fascinating, Captain. Both scientism and modernism share a common narrative of progress, enlightenment, and egalitarian virtue signaling, Captain.



    Captain Kirk: Doesn’t that pose problems and certain conflicts with Catholic natural law theory, Mister Spock?



    Spock: Perhaps. But the neo-Hegelian dialectic of progressive modernism is designed to handle conflicts between contradictory theses and antitheses, Jim.



    Captain Kirk: But doesn’t that get confusing, Mister Spock.



    Spock: Not if we keep the higher synthesis from opening the windows to the modern world in mind, Jim.



    Hans Küng: I would like to address that…



    Kwai Chang: So that is why I must carry Professor Edmund Husserl’s The Crisis of European Sciences and Transcendental Phenomenology instead of the Tao Te Ching of Lao-Tzu in the analogical Tortoise and Hare race between St. Patrick’s College, Maynooth, and Clongowes Wood College in County Kildare, Master?



    Master Po: Strange are the ways of progressive modernism and its dialectic, are they not, Grasshopper? In time you will snatch the pebble from my hand. Until then we have much to explore as we boldly go where no man has gone before.








  3. Captain Kirk: Well, I hope that as a half-breed alien you have always felt welcome and accepted by our diverse, tolerant, and inclusive policies on the Enterprise, Mister Spock.



    Spock: Although my mother was human, I have always identified as Vulcan, Captain.



    Captain Kirk: You’re not too worried that our mission might conflict with some points of Catholic doctrine?



    Spock: The purpose of intergalactic scientism is to explore, Jim. Pope Francis has already proclaimed the principle of “who am I to judge?” which should leave of plenty of room.



    Sulu: Yes, Captain. Being diverse, tolerant, and inclusive is part of the emphasis on mercy that Pope Francis is bringing to modernism. Everyone is talking about it.



    Captain Kirk: Spock!

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