Today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a national holiday celebrating the legendary civil rights leader. It is also part of Star Trek lore that he was a fan of the original Star Trek, and especially of Lt. Uhura, played by Nichelle Nichols. Nichols has often told the story of how she was going to quit, but Dr. King persuaded her to stay with the show because it was so important to see Black people as an essential part of the optimistic future depicted on the series, especially during the tumultuous times of the 1960s.
In the video below from the Television Academy, Nichols retells the story.
See more Star Trek history at TrekMovie.com.