02440: More Diversity in Geekery

In Star Trek, the Vulcans have a concept known as IDIC - Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations. It is one of the fundamentals of the Vulcan philosophy that puts priority on logic and understanding while factoring in the limitless potential of possibilities the universe brings. It's a concept that embraces difference instead of trying to impose one's definition of order and rightness on others. It's part of what makes Gene Roddenberry's view of the future so seemingly enlightened as you have races like this that try to see beyond the color of one's skin or the number of limbs or eyes they have.

This is but one of the many reasons that I came to love the Star Trek franchise and proudly call myself a Trekkie. And to some extent one sort of expects that others who love the fandom share similar views of embracing diversity and trying to apply those concepts to real life.

But we're only human and no one is perfect. We all view things differently and we all like certain things for different reasons. So even something like Star Trek can attract all sorts of different fans including people with chauvinist tendencies who view female characters as somehow being weaker than their male counterparts.

I sort of expect this sort of "boy's club" thinking from some of my other fandoms like among fellow Transformers collectors. It's a predominantly male hobby and as a gay man I don't quite feel like engaging with my peers all that much. It's not like they're rude or anything but there's a lot of "bro" and "pare" and even "master" terms thrown about in almost every conversation. But we do have some female collectors who get a lot of respect in terms of how they're treated - and that respect is best seen in how they are treated the same as everyone else.

But my Star Trek group still falls into the trap of sharing a lot of sexy Star Trek cosplay photos of women and the inevitable discussions about Orion slave girls. It doesn't involve going out of their way to be rude or anything like that or attacking other members in the group. But it's the more subversive casual misogyny that creeps into their comments or their posts that is what is most disappointing and makes me hope that things could be different.