Last Friday, President Donald Trump signed a military spending bill that launched a sixth branch of the US armed forces: the Space Force. It’s the first new military service created since the Air Force in 1947, and yet the all-new logo hasn’t struck people as altogether new. In fact, the Space Force insignia is nearly identical to the old Star Trek symbol for Starfleet.
Aside from the fact that both are circular, with writing curved around the outside, there are a few points of resemblance. Both designs depict a large arrow front-and-center, set against a backdrop of stars, with a swooping line arcing around the rear of the arrow and truncating to the right. But apart from the main subject, the accent line, the background, the overall shape, and the placement of the writing, the two pictures couldn’t be more different.
But many people still insist on seeing similarities, including Star Trek alumnus George Takei. The man who played Sulu wrote on Twitter, “Ahem. We are expecting some royalties from this.”
Now, in Trump’s defense, the the Space Force is apparently modeled on an old Air Force design. That was the original source of the arrow, at least, although that particular symbol had multiple lines instead of just one, a less spacey background, and it comes in the shape of a badge (okay, it is a badge). When the logo was re-purposed for Trump’s Space Force, every single change brought it closer to the platonic Trekkie ideal.
If you’re hoping that the Space Force will live out the Star Trek dream of “seeking out new life and new civilizations,” well, the President had something slightly different in mind. In the run-up to the $20 billion military spending bill, Trump said, “Among grave threats to our national security, American superiority in space is absolutely vital. And we’re leading, but we’re not leading by enough, and very shortly we’ll be leading by a lot.” So that’s the goal: leading by a lot. Or, as Melania Trump said so many times, “To boldly go where no one has gone before.”
Oh wow. pic.twitter.com/uiJfOS1L1HAdvertisement
— Miriam Kramer (@mirikramer) January 24, 2020
Ahem. We are expecting some royalties from this… https://t.co/msYcJMlqjh
— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) January 24, 2020
For those excitedly tweeting that Trump stole the Star Trek logo!!!!, the patch on the left was the existing Air Force Command logo.
The same one I wore as a Lieutenant in 2005. pic.twitter.com/mYb60YioBP
— John Noonan (@noonanjo) January 24, 2020