This past Wednesday night, September 4th, 2019, CNN hosted a televised prime time town hall style meeting with ten of the 2020 Presidential Democratic candidates, which finally gave a well-deserved start and political focus on our planet’s Climate Crisis in a more mainstream way.
Hosted by CNN Moderators, the candidates fielded live questions from a studio audience, as well as questions sent in via video. The often smart and passionate questions were aimed at exploring the candidate’s positions, plans and views on the pending Climate Crisis facing the country, as it affects Democrats, Republicans and Independents alike, along with the entire world!
While this article is not meant to be partisan nor an endorsement per se of Senator Cory Booker, it was refreshing to see the national media and candidates of at least one major party spending time and political energy on issues of real importance to the planet as a whole.
I was particularly struck by the Roddenberry-like tone of some of the positions expressed, with one candidate in particular specifically expressing his gratitude to CNN for dedicating a whole evening to the climate crisis, while also expressing an affinity for Star Trek.
New Jersey Democratic Senator and 2020 Presidential hopeful, Cory Booker was in fact the last candidate to step in front of the Town Hall audience alongside CNN’s Don Lemmon. Booker’s last question of the evening came from a Rutgers University climate science professor, who asked the senator to speak on his position concerning geo engineering, which is also known as climate intervention. You can see Senator Booker’s entire thirty minute Q&A on the CNN Climate Crisis town hall below:
While Booker admitted that he was not up to speed on the subject of geo engineering, he went on to say that what little he knew on the subject was from watching episodes of Star Trek saying, “I am a bit of a Trekkie.”
While Booker did promise the professor that he would research and address geothermal energy moving forward in his campaign, he jokingly turned to his CNN host, Don Lemmon, and said, “That might be the headline coming out of this. Booker confesses that he is a Trekkie.”
This is not the first time however, that Senator Booker has spoken of his love of science fiction and Star Trek. He was recently interviewed by SciFiWire at San Diego Comic Con, where he spoke of his father who introduced him to the original series, telling him it was a show he must watch. Booker indicated that as a kid, Star Trek challenged him to dream boldly, while also making him hopeful that humanity could achieve great things with vision, science, technology and innovation.
In the interview, Senator Booker also spoke of being drawn and inspired by the show as a young black man because it featured a future in which humanity had overcome both poverty and racism. Booker also affirmatively indicated that The Next Generation was his favorite Trek show, with Picard being his favorite Captain, in part because of his, “. . . incredible hairstyle.”
Booker went on to say, “It made me believe that the future could be incredible and great and to be a part of making it great!” And very proudly proclaimed his pride in representing not only New Jersey, but also representing his city of Newark, which has the honor of being the very first city to host and the birthplace of the world’s first Star Trek convention, called “Star Trek Con” in the Newark Public Library in 1969. You can See a portion of Senator Booker’s SciFiWire interview below:
Just before leaving the stage at the CNN Climate Crisis Town Hall, Senator Booker turned to Don Lemon, shook his hand and spoke the legendary Vulcan greeting and farewell saying, “Live Long and Prosper.”
So while it was great to see CNN stepping up and striving to do its part and be a good steward of our Mother and planet Earth, it was likewise refreshing to see so many candidates attempting to include the ongoing protection and fight for our planet as an important component in their 2020 presidential campaign.
But perhaps it is just as important in personal and moral ways to have candidates running for the highest office of the land, along with hopefully many others, who are Trekkies and grew up inspired by the ideals, diversity, vision and hopefulness of Gene Roddenberry and Star Trek.
By the same token, maybe a good place for the rest of us to start may be for all Trekkies to sit their own children down in front of the television and introduce them to the Great Bird of the Universe’s vision, along with all of the diverse ideals that makes Star Trek so great.
Peace and Long Life Senator Booker, good luck and Make it So sir!!!