Time magazine's Sam Lansky equated the ISIS-inspired terrorist attack in Orlando and Donald Trump's pick of Mike Pence as his running mate in an interview of Star Trek actor Zachary Quinto published on Thursday: "In the wake of the attacks in Orlando and Trump picking Mike Pence as his running mate, does it feel like a frightening moment to be a gay American? It does for me." Quinto replied, in part, "it's just a bleak and dangerous moment in our geopolitical landscape right now."
An abbreviated version of Lansky's interview appeared in the August 1, 2016 print edition of Time. The editors actually removed the "it does for me" sentence for that edition, but it provided the context that both interviewer and interviewee are openly homosexual. In the longer version of his answer to the Hollywood editor's question, the actor reveals his dread over the possibility of a Trump presidency:
There are indicators of the pendulum swinging the other way right now in terms of the political temperature and the landscape of Trump. It's absurd to me, but I have to have faith that we'll endure and triumph. I have to feel like people will look at these two old white men, who represent everything that is negative in history, and say there are more people who want to go a different direction. I hope so. I am scared. I don't take anything for granted. I have a lot of people in my life that think there's no way Trump will win. I don't believe that for a second. We have to fight with everything we have to continue the path that we've been able to gain such ground on in the last five to ten years. It's just a bleak and dangerous moment in our geopolitical landscape right now. It's unprecedented in our lifetime how precariously we're all perched—not just here in this country but around the world.
Quinto's answer paralleled his answer to a previous question about the new Star Trek movie, which premiered on Friday:
...[T]his one feel[s] particularly timely, given that the country—and the world—feels so divided.
Our adversary in this movie is a being who's diametrically opposed to the Federation. He wants to destroy a place that's a hub for different species and races—people from all over the galaxy coming together and inhabiting this one place. It's weirdly parallel to what's going on all over the world right now. There's waves of nationalism and xenophobia and fear-based thinking and intolerance. It's alarming. At the end of the day, this is a blockbuster summer popcorn movie—we're not trying to delve into any of these themes explicitly—but what Star Trek represents is the idea that unity will always overcome hatred.
Later in the print version of the interview, the Time editor asked the Hollywood star about his upcoming role as left-wing journalist Glenn Greenwald in Oliver Stone's movie about Edward Snowden: "Did your feelings about Snowden shift over the course of making the film?" Quinto's reply:
I went in feeling like what he did was immeasurably beneficial to society, and that belief was only reinforced by working on the film. Once I started understanding more about the information that he disseminated, it was shocking how grievously it was an invasion of so many people's privacy. We should be equipped with information in order to protect ourselves. Look—it's complicated, but I feel like he was vilified in a way.