Star Trek and Young Justice actress Marina Sirtis claimed that “a Star Trek fan does not equal a Republican.”
Sirtis, who played Counselor Deanna Troi, one of Jean Luc Picard’s most trusted advisors in Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: First Contact, Star Trek: Insurrection, and Star Trek: Nemesis, recently did an interview with The Big Issue discussing the idea of being a Star Trek fan and a Republican.
In the interview, Sirtis, who voices Queen Bee on Young Justice, discusses her upcoming play Dark Sublime that is showing in London, American politics, and Star Trek. Sirtis quickly jumps into politics after she is asked if she is happy to be back working in the United Kingdom. She even notes that she doesn’t think she can live in America anymore!
“I have to be honest, I miss it. Despite the fact the weather is so much better [in LA] I’m really homesick and thinking seriously about coming back. Since the election I just don’t think I can live in the America Trump has created, I really don’t.”
Sirtis is then asked about living in California. She responds:
“We’re the one state that is defying him but I travel a lot so I come out of the bubble. When I go to other places my heart sinks. My fellow cast members are always telling me off for being political in places where they wouldn’t advise it, like Georgia. ‘Marina you can’t say that we’re in Atlanta’ and I’d be like ‘Yeah, but this is where I have to say it’. I have to say things in places where they possibly don’t agree with me, in a way that makes them think about something.”
Then Sirtis claims that a Star Trek fan cannot equal a Republican.
“You feel like saying, did you watch the show? Because you are saying the exact opposite of what the show represents. It’s an oxymoron – a Star Trek fan does not equal a Republican, it doesn’t. The people who I hear from on social media, I don’t get how they can be huge fans of the show and my character and think the way that they do.”
Just after indicating she might move back to the United Kingdom, Sirtis claims the United Kingdom is way worse than the United States because of Brexit.
“You know what, as bad as it is [in the US] it’s not going to be as bad as Brexit. Trump is going to be gone in two years hopefully. Or if they lose their minds again – I should say ‘we’ because I’m a dual citizen – and re-elect him, six years tops is all we’re going to get. But Brexit is forever. I don’t know what got into us with that vote. Still, totally baffled.”
Sirtis then insinuates that both Donald Trump and Brexit supporters are racists because one of their main issues is immigration.
“The thing is… I’m very outspoken. I say what I think. Trump and Brexit are both about immigration. That’s the bottom line. And you know what, we’ve got to stop using euphemisms, like I just did. ‘It’s all about immigration’ is a euphemism for racism. We sugar-coat it, that’s how they get away with it. We’ve got to call it what it is. Fear of the other.”
“And the other right now is people who don’t have white skin or aren’t Christian. I hate that we sugar-coat it and use euphemisms like populist. Let’s call it what it is, let’s call these people out. This is how Trump is doing it, he’s giving them permission to be their hateful selves because there’s no consequences. They don’t feel embarrassed to say the things they would have been embarrassed to say when Obama was President.”
It’s like they pulled the scab off the wound and the pus is all pouring out. That’s exactly the right metaphor. It’s just disgusting. So I don’t think I can live here anymore. I don’t think English people are as bad. British people have a reputation across the world for being snooty, cold and distant but we’re authentic. We’re much more authentic than Americans.”
Of course, anyone who is a fan of the Star Trek franchise knows that this view is not compatible with the facts. I like many others have known, and still know fans of Star Trek who are as politically diverse as the Federation is with its hundreds of member worlds.
But I want to hear from you. What is your take on Marina Sirtis’s views on the fandom? Are her comments a form of gatekeeping based on personal politics?