Benjamin Sisko and James T. Kirk share a major desire that transcends generations

Two iconic Star Trek captains saw the value in their roles.
11th Annual Official Star Trek Convention
11th Annual Official Star Trek Convention / Albert L. Ortega/GettyImages

Benjamin Sisko and James T. Kirk served in Starfleet nearly one hundred years apart from one another. Kirk was the first captain of the USS Enterprise, while Sisko was entrusted with the stewardship of the space station Deep Space Nine. They were two captains, who served a two very different times in the franchise's history.

Kirk, the explorer, sought out new and unique life upon the stars. Gone for years at a time. Sisko, the steady hand, who not only helped a ravaged civilization rebuild but took point in one of the most brutal and violent wars in Federation history. They were both fathers, though Kirk was an absent father, unaware of his son until much later in his child's life. Sisko's fatherhood was one of his defining characteristics. Before he was a captain, he was a dad.

They had nothing in common. Nothing, but one very unique view.

As vastly different as they were, they both shared one unique trait that would forever bond them. Both men saw the value in being a captain and not an admiral. The higher you move up the ranks, the less direct impact you have on those around you. This was something both Kirk and Sisko understood.

For Sisko, he had expressed a lack of desire to move up to admiral. He wanted to be part of his crew's everyday life. It's admirable, ironically enough, to turn down a huge promotion just to stay with your crew. It was something Kirk wished would've been his path. He almost was forced into admiralship.

He did take the promotion, but it was depicted as a way to honor him while keeping him out of the action. While Kirk was an indominable force for Starfleet, he was beyond hard to control. He guided his ship by instinct, and if that instinct bucked in the trend of Starfleet regulation, so be it.

Neither man wanted to be an admiral. It's a fact that unites them, decades apart. The two men rarely ever get mentioned together in the same breath. This is one of those times where we can point to them and draw a line connecting two great leaders.

It's one of the few things they share in common, and it's ultimately one of their most defining traits. At the end of the day, neither man cared about their rank as much as they cared about their duty. For Kirk, it was discovering the great unknown. For Sisko, it was about bettering his community.

Two very different men, two very different goals, yet two very exceptional men.