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2024 Is a Hell of a Year in Star Trek History

Screenshot: Paramount

Extinction avoided is nice, but that doesn’t stop other bad things existing in Trek’s 2024. Remember those Sanctuary Districts we mentioned earlier? They begin cropping up in major cities all over the United States, intended to provide free housing, healthcare, and job opportunities to people impacted by the wave of economic, climate, and political crises wracking the country. But Sanctuary Districts rapidly descended into totalitarian ghettos, with local police forces ruling the districts with iron fists, and local governments using the sanctuaries to corral poor civilians away from the upper classes, largely unaware of just how brutal the districts had become.

As depicted in the Deep Space Nine two-parter “Past Tense,” in the late summer of 2024 in San Francisco’s Sanctuary District A, a group of residents lead by Gabriel Bell staged a violent takeover of the district’s processing center, taking several federal employees and police officers hostage. The hostage situation was nearly diffused peacefully on Bell’s part (who was, in fact, Captain Benjamin Sisko, who created a paradox after a transporter accident led to him and several of his officers being sent back to 2024 and inadvertently causing the death of the real Graham Bell), with the plight of the Sanctuary Districts being broadcast across the U.S..

But the Governor of California ordered a violent crackdown on District A by the National Guard, leading to the massacre of hundreds of residents being broadcast as well. The Bell Riots, as they would come to be known, sparked a wave of public action against Sanctuary Districts—leading to campaigns for mass socioeconomic reform to replace the need for the districts.

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