William Shatner is a living legend, and he’s got an AI-powered hologram in the works to take over when he’s gone. The man who has been at the forefront of the Star Trek franchise for decades is worried about humanity, and in a fantastic, far-reaching new interview with Big Issue he opens up about his outlook, which isn’t very bright.
When asked if humanity will make it to a Star Trek future in the 23rd century, Shatner doesn’t hold back: “No. Fifty years ago, I read Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring. I remember vividly. What she said was going to happen has happened…What we’ve done, all of us, is bury our heads in the sand. It’s so awful to contemplate what’s going to happen. And it’s going to happen.”
Climate change is causing new problems with each passing day, and Shatner is worried we’re not doing enough to address it. “Recently I’ve been reading about the city of Miami thinking of erecting sea walls,” he said. “All those port cities – England is filled with port cities – are going to have to erect walls, the way the Dutch have, to keep out the ocean. No question about it.”
I’ve seen maps of what the ocean is going to do to Bangladesh. There’s 60 million people in Bangladesh? It’s going to be underwater! Where are those people going to go? India already has too many people. Pakistan, are you kidding me? That’s going to be the way it’s going to affect the world. And it’s going to be awful.
One of the reasons that the Earth is in so much trouble, Shatner argues, is overpopulation. “The real reason everything is happening is there’s too many people. The planet can’t sustain seven billion, let alone 10 billion. It’s such a complex problem. And nobody’s dealing with it. Nobody!”
William Shatner sees overpopulation as a major barrier to a Star Trek future
At the rate we’re going, no one will make it to a Star Trek future. “It is going to be, not the end of mankind, but it’s going to be the decline of mankind.”
Shatner wants to be buried in a redwood forest on some land he owns. He sees that as the most Earth-friendly way to go. A seed will be planted over his remains and he will become a majestic redwood tree, the biggest tree of them all.
It will be a while before he turns into a tree. At 90, Shatner shows no signs of slowing down. From riding horses to swimming with sharks to filming new projects, he’s staying active and living life to the fullest.