Amazingly, even this shitty excuse for an episode has its defenders (after seeing it for myself I didn't consider for a moment that anyone would actually stand up for it). This is from the comments thread for part one:
Chuck, I disagree. I call bullshit, finally, on this whole racism schtick. It's not racism.
This episode is not really racist; the show is, but not the episode. Bigoted perhaps, but not racist. Racism is the belief that one race is superior to all others, and you base your policies accordingly. While this episode strained to show a distinctly culturally quasi-African stereotype, this is still not racism. That's right, not racism. And no, I still don't think their behavior toward Tasha was necessarily racist either. However, if you want to see an example of real sexism, look no further than Angel One. Geez, time for me to do these reviews. Pointing out and displaying an ethnic tendency is not racism. Pointing it out and telling why it's a bad thing is not racism, but criticism. Pointing to a person and judging them based squarely on their skin color IS racism. Better yet, expecting a man to kill himself because he can't be expected to bear with a life-crippling disability is known as the Soft Bigotry of Low Expectations. There is a distinction between bigotry and racism. Everyone is a bigot. EVERYONE. Why? Because we prefer what we know and understand to the unfamiliar. That's Human Nature 101. We prefer that because it's our comfort zone. We know how to properly interact and deal with things we're familiar with; that's our comfort zones. We tend to group in accordance with our comfort zones, based on ethicity, language, skin color, gender, age group, and so on. Now, I'm not saying that since everyone is a bigot that we can't get along. Hardly. What we do is feel each other out, learn what we can as we go, and the more familiar we are and the more understanding we become the more we adopt them into our comfort zones. It's a form of self-defense. After all, when you see someone different than you, they might not hold to your values. They might not be trustworthy. And even in our highly informed world we generalize people into stereotypes because it's part of how we, as mere humans, deal with the world at large.
At no point in this episode did I get the impression that the White Guys were the superior ones to the Black Guys. I looked at the White Guys as being part of a different Nation than the Black Guys. That is not Racism. There might've been some bigotry on the part of the writers, but if it bothers you...you can go to Hell.
Because this kind of shit needs to stop. People who simply look at others in a way like the way Chuck just did, and call it racism without thinking, has got to stop. It's wrong, because it's based squarely on Political Correctness, the whole point of which is to stifle honest and valid criticism and debate.
People have their flaws. They should be pointed out, whether the flaws belong to those considered minorities or not. Multiculturalism is meant mainly to separate people from one another, by emphasizing their differences rather than dealing with them. Not all of them are equal, as history has shown.
Why do I get the feeling that this apologist only saw a few minutes of the review and then reached this idiotic opinion? How the fuck could anyone not see this sorry chapter in Star Trek history as being anything other than racist trash? I mean, it's inherent in the premise for crying out loud! The whole episode plays out like some bullshit 1950s PSA about the "dangers of race-mixing" or the fever dreams of some KKK nutbag. The uncivilised, barbaric dark-skinned people lusting after defiant, white meat.
This "Wylde" character claims that he doesn't see the what the fuss is all about. That there was no indication that "the White Guys were the superior ones to the Black Guys" (I love the use of capitalisation, by the way). What about the fact that Picard and the Enterprise crew, unlike Lutan, would never abduct a woman and brag about using her as a status symbol or treat her as property? Lutan who is condescending and dismissive when the Enterprise crew tries to negotiate. Or that there isn't a single sympathetic or likeable Ligonian in the entire episode? What few characters we get to know are characterised as backward, brutish, arrogant, smug and obnoxious. They also seem to be completely apathetic about what happens to one of their own people (no one gives a crap about the random person in the audience who is accidentally stabbed and dies during the duel). Not even Lutan's wife, Yareena, is remotely grateful for being saved. Yeah, the Federation and the Ligonians are definitely on an equal footing in the principles department. All of the failings of the episode stick out like a sore thumb. As Chuck pointed out the director (Russ Mayberry) was rightly fired by Roddenberry after he arbitrarily made the Ligonians a race of black people. After all of that, what more evidence do you need that it's garbage?
I'm in full agreement with Chuck here. A zero is all that it deserves. It's poorly paced, poorly written, there aren't any particularly interesting character beats and it's offensive (as has already been repeatedly stated). The bottom of TNG's barrel, indeed.