The man who kept the Enterprise running passed away today.

James Doohan’s Star Trek character was a great example for me of Gene Roddenberry’s vision of the future. Kirk, Spock, and McCoy may have been the center of most of the action, but Scotty stepped up and took command of the ship in the worst situations when they were away. It made it seem like the supporting characters weren’t just there for support. They were all highly competent, professional, and cool in a crisis, even if not as flashy as the Captain. It evoked a Starfleet system of selecting the best people, out of thousands of volunteers, based purely on merit and team cohesion. (Of course, that doesn’t explain why so many of the people they met from the Federation and Starfleet were venal, cruel, and incompetent.)