''Gerrold wrote the story of contagion as a metaphor for the AIDS pandemic and the episode is dedicated to the gifted Star Trek alumni the world has lost to the disease: William Ware Theiss, Mike Minor and Merritt Butrick. It was also Gerrold's intention to challenge the apathy of the public regarding the small sacrifice, yet far reaching power, of blood donations. Based on an original TNG script that was shelved because of the mention of a gay crewman aboard the Enterprise, "Blood and Fire" for Star Trek New Voyages: Phase II honors Gene Roddenberry's vision of a non-judgmental future with the inclusion of a gay couple as part of the principle action of the story.''
From a news article posted at Star Trek: Phase II, a fan site that produces new (unofficial) episodes of the beloved sci-fi TV franchise. The latest episode is called ''Blood and Fire'' and was originally crafted for "The Next Generation" series. No episodes of Star Trek shows have featured an obvious and openly-gay or lesbian character, and this script was said to have been shelved because executives were uncomfortable with the gay characters it features. Several scripts did tackle sexual attraction as it related to issues of gender through body-switching, possession and alternate universes, though. (Star Trek: Phase II)