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The Prime Directive: Vital law or fig leaf for moral cowardice?

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  • gulberatgulberat Member Posts: 5,505 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    Rainbowdoubledash, considering that 1 of 5 women will be sexually assaulted in her lifetime and the rest must live under the the threat even in the US--AND a proportion of men have or will also be sexually assaulted (unsure of statistics especially due to likely severe underreporting), I don't see how you can ever think you will be in a "clean" environment in a public place where no one is around who has experienced it, or the threat. MAYBE you can know that with a few friends you know forwards and backwards but in mixed company I hold that it is impossible. So I can't agree with you that it's something you or any of us can be flippant about it.

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  • jer5488jer5488 Member Posts: 506 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    I dislike the Prime Directive. It's - at it's best - a moral plot device. At it's worst, it's draconian and beyond heartless.

    Instead of a blanket 'You won't interfere with another culture' - which Starfleet violates all the time - there should be a policty of 'You will not uplift a culture that isn't ready for contact, and you will make any and all attempts to avoid contact with a culture that doesn't meet contact standards. This is my preferred version of a non-interference policy.

    Contact with a civilization that has not developed a warp one engine is strictly forbidden. Contact with a society with warp one technology is allowed - but first contact will be done by a starship with a proper diplomatic and cultural relations team.

    In the case of an extinction level event, a Starship is authorized to intervene - but must make all possible attempts to remain undetected. An extinction level event includes natural plagues. If the extinction level event is caused by the society - intervention is forbidden - unless correction of the event can be disguised as a natural event.

    If the starship is detected in these circumstances - the mission will be completed, but further first contact will not be initiated. The Starship will then leave the planet immediately for debrief from a Prime Directive initiative party.

    A Starship is - under no circumstance - to involve itself in another culture's war unless that culture is spacefaring and both sides request mediation and/or Federation worlds, colonies, and/or protectorates are under threat.

    Intervention protocols are superseded by the Omega Directive and contact with the Borg.

    ***

    Just my two cents.
  • worffan101worffan101 Member Posts: 9,518 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    valoreah wrote: »
    Neelix seemed to do quite a bit if you ask me. I don't see Talaxians as useless.

    Oh, sure...he almost destroyed a starship with cheese, complained about bugs in his salad instead of actually removing them, refused to do his job of feeding the crew, terrorized children with ghost stories despite being explicitly told not to, got two people killed directly through his own incompetence in a field he professed competence in, refused to stop serving food that he KNEW was causing food poisoning, and got choked to death by Tuvok as a hologram.

    He did a lot. It was just a counterproductive lot.
  • rambowdoubledashrambowdoubledash Member Posts: 298 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    gulberat wrote: »
    So I can't agree with you that it's something you or any of us can be flippant about it.

    No one said anything about being flippant about it. What I object to is a total ban on trying to ever make fun of the situation at all.

    I understand that this isn't like violence, where, for example, Seth Rogan getting his fingers bitten off (and subsequently biting off some North Korean's fingers himself) in The Interview can be funny. Sexual assault can only be funny if it's framed in such a way to make it, for want of a better term, "harmless."

    In the specific case of "Unexpected," you can't get much more harmless. Trip wasn't traumatized physically, mentally, or emotionally. He generally takes the whole thing in stride save for embarrassment over the situation, but his embarrassment is the sum total of the consequences for the situation. Ah'len is herself surprised and apologetic - she didn't even know cross-species impregnation was possible, and as I pointed out elsewhere there is no particular reason to believe that she was lying when she called it a game because we know that there are species in Trek who treat sex much differently form humans - to Xyrillans it really could be a game.

    I can understand that not everyone will find it funny, regardless. Like I said, there is no accounting for color or taste (I said it in Latin, of course, but I still said it). What I do not appreciate, however, is being accused of moral bankruptcy for being able to find "Unexpected" funny.
  • worffan101worffan101 Member Posts: 9,518 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    gulberat wrote: »
    Rainbowdoubledash, considering that 1 of 5 women will be sexually assaulted in her lifetime and the rest must live under the the threat even in the US--AND a proportion of men have or will also be sexually assaulted (unsure of statistics especially due to likely severe underreporting), I don't see how you can ever think you will be in a "clean" environment in a public place where no one is around who has experienced it, or the threat. MAYBE you can know that with a few friends you know forwards and backwards but in mixed company I hold that it is impossible. So I can't agree with you that it's something you or any of us can be flippant about it.

    This^^^^

    I know two men personally who've been sexually assaulted (one by a woman, incidentally) and are too ashamed/afraid to report it officially. Sexual assault isn't funny, no matter the gender of the victim.

    (I also personally know three women, including my own mother, who were sexually assaulted. It's not funny. At all.)
  • rambowdoubledashrambowdoubledash Member Posts: 298 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    Worffan101, I do not want to get into a game of who knows more people who've suffered and therefore has the moral high ground, okay? It's not a game that anyone ever actually wins.

    Can we please just drop the damn subject?
  • gulberatgulberat Member Posts: 5,505 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    Jer, that's pretty sound, though I would point out that avoiding detection (or application of the scientific method to something that defies the known science of the time) is proportionately more difficult as a species increases in its ability to wreak planetwide destruction. In the 19th century we were beginning to contaminate wide areas of the planet, and a starship would now have to think about avoiding high-powered optical telescopes at least good enough to produce geographic maps of the Moon and Mars (even if we drew the wrong conclusions about what we saw). By the time we had nukes, we also had sufficient theories to spot spacefaring tech on close approach and later had what Starfleet would likely refer to as an orbital surveillance grid even though we lack true orbital defenses.

    Sneaking one past people in 1 AD is one thing. Sneaking one past the people of the Industrial Revolution gets harder, and trying to avoid the people of the Nuclear/Orbital age is even harder.

    The other question captains might have to watch out for is if a species' communications and surveillance tech greatly outstrips its travel capabilities for some reason. What would you do about such a species that somehow succeeded in getting FTL comms well ahead of a warp engine and started picking up signals or flat out CALLED the Federation? "We know you're out there because we can hear you. Now will you pick up the phone already???"

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  • worffan101worffan101 Member Posts: 9,518 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    Y'know, I think that sneaking one past modern Earth would be impossible. Maybe with a cloaked ship, some Jem'Hadar, or a Founder/Undine or two, you could do something. But without SERIOUS stealth tech, the main difference between Trek tech and modern tech is (a) firepower, and (b) space magic. Stealth is...not great, outside of cloaking devices.
  • marcusdkanemarcusdkane Member Posts: 7,439 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    I thought the statistic was one in three, and in my own experiences and amount of female friends who I know to have been abused/assaulted/r*ped, I would sadly have to conclude that it is an accurate statistic.

    I refuse to ever watch BladeRunner again due to Deckard's treatment of Rachael, the r*pe of Marcellus Wallace in Pulp Fiction is chilling, although there is still some very dark humor in the scenario, but what happened to Trip simply does not compare, and while I don't want to get into another argument like the other day, you cannot hold others to your opinions or expect them to share them, and then dismiss them simply because they do not.

    On the topic of the Talaxians, I believe it was a squad of Talaxians who helped Paris re-take Voyager... They're not all as bad as Neelix...
  • gulberatgulberat Member Posts: 5,505 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    Rainbowdoubledash--In that particular episode I think it can possibly be argued that there was not sufficient mens rea to make the premeditated charge stick, though I admit I would initially bring her up on the more serious charge and make her prove for absolute sure before a jury that this was the case. But I would at the very least expect a conviction on criminal negligence for not thinking to warn an utterly unknowing person that what she was doing leads to procreation, even if she thought that it was impossible for the result to affect Trip any more than a mere game. I would not consider it funny though and if I were in universe, I would definitely consider the matter answerable to one of the two charges, and a matter worthy of a jury trial to ensure proper justice is done.

    Ironically, on topic, Ah'len at the very least did something not unlike violating the Prime Directive on *humanity* (through superior knowledge and technology, entering into something Trip had insufficient knowledge at the time to understand and properly consent to). Whether or not malicious/premeditated, that I would submit to the court.

    We know in Star Trek retrospect that humanity is oddly subject to reproducing with other species without medical help. A quirk in our DNA and biology makes us particularly vulnerable. But in ENT, as we see in Terra Prime, our species is not yet developed enough to fully comprehend or have come to grips with that fact, which at the least makes Ah'len criminally irresponsible.

    (In later series I am sure it is a "known galactic fact" to use extra precautions with humans because they are easy to harm sexually or get/cause an unplanned pregnancy.)

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  • worffan101worffan101 Member Posts: 9,518 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    I thought the statistic was one in three, and in my own experiences and amount of female friends who I know to have been abused/assaulted/r*ped, I would sadly have to conclude that it is an accurate statistic.

    I refuse to ever watch BladeRunner again due to Deckard's treatment of Rachael, the r*pe of Marcellus Wallace in Pulp Fiction is chilling, although there is still some very dark humor in the scenario, but what happened to Trip simply does not compare, and while I don't want to get into another argument like the other day, you cannot hold others to your opinions or expect them to share them, and then dismiss them simply because they do not.
    There's a difference between saying that it wasn't as serious (and I believe that that was only the case because of writer fiat; every man and woman I know would be screaming blue murder and trying to kill that alien in Trip's situation) and saying that it was OK and funny because he didn't act like someone's idea of how a traumatized person should act.
    On the topic of the Talaxians, I believe it was a squad of Talaxians who helped Paris re-take Voyager... They're not all as bad as Neelix...

    From the KAZON.

    That's like taking the ship back from bacteria. The Kazon literally killed themselves plugging in the equivalent of a refrigerator.

    Any special ed class in the universe could take a ship back from the Kazon. I know children--YOUNG children--who are smarter than the Kazon. Saying that some Talaxians were once better than the Kazon is like saying they were once better than a mushroom you found under a rotting log.
  • jonsillsjonsills Member Posts: 9,861 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    You want to know what nature's plan for the Star Trek universe is? By definition, Nature cannot have a plan.
    This covers a point I wanted to make. Valoreah, you made repeated references earlier to "what nature intended".

    Nature doesn't intend anything.

    When that asteroid made the Chicxulub crater, "nature" didn't intend to cause the extinction of every large ground-dwelling life form on Earth. It just happened. When Mt. St. Helens exploded in 1980 "nature" didn't intend to kill Harry Truman (no relation) and the geologist who went back to make one last attempt to get Truman to leave - their deaths were completely incidental.

    "Nature" did not - could not - "intend" to wipe out the native life of Nibiru with a volcano, nor could it "intend" the destruction of the planet in "Pen Pals" or the extinction of the beings Nikolai was working with. Saving those people was not "interfering" with "nature's intent", because impersonal forces don't intend, only living beings do.

    Jon's post, supplemental: Don't bother trying to argue with Worffan about the Talaxians. His opinion, so far as he is concerned, is Objective Fact, and failure to agree utterly with him can only indicate either mental or moral failure. He intends to be a scientist one day; I hope he grows beyond this attitude first, or it will hamper his career dramatically.
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  • rambowdoubledashrambowdoubledash Member Posts: 298 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    jonsills wrote: »
    Nature doesn't intend anything.

    That's not precisely always the case in Star Trek, though...in particular "Year of Hell" certainly makes it seem like time does not appreciate being ****ed with.
    gulberat wrote: »
    Rainbowdoubledash--In that particular episode I think it can possibly be argued that there was not sufficient mens rea to make the premeditated charge stick, though I admit I would initially bring her up on the more serious charge and make her prove for absolute sure before a jury that this was the case.

    That's up to Trip - well, I suppose her captain could chew her out for regs or something, but Trip himself doesn't seem to want to press any charges nor bear Ah'len any real ill will (he treats it with the gravity of waking up with a tattoo outta nowhere...that only Ah'len can remove...without damaging the tattoo...it's not a perfect metaphor), he just doesn't want to be a dad yet, and because of Magic Future Technology, he doesn't have to be.
    Ironically, on topic, Ah'len at the very least did something not unlike violating the Prime Directive on *humanity.*

    To be completely fair she's, if not quite the same, then at least within an order of magnitude of Kirk.
  • gulberatgulberat Member Posts: 5,505 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    Personally, I don't like Kirk's conduct either and think he should've been censured for some of his actions too.

    BTW, looks like I was editing while you were responding.

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  • worffan101worffan101 Member Posts: 9,518 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    jonsills wrote: »
    This covers a point I wanted to make. Valoreah, you made repeated references earlier to "what nature intended".

    Nature doesn't intend anything.

    When that asteroid made the Chicxulub crater, "nature" didn't intend to cause the extinction of every large ground-dwelling life form on Earth. It just happened. When Mt. St. Helens exploded in 1980 "nature" didn't intend to kill Harry Truman (no relation) and the geologist who went back to make one last attempt to get Truman to leave - their deaths were completely incidental.

    "Nature" did not - could not - "intend" to wipe out the native life of Nibiru with a volcano, nor could it "intend" the destruction of the planet in "Pen Pals" or the extinction of the beings Nikolai was working with. Saving those people was not "interfering" with "nature's intent", because impersonal forces don't intend, only living beings do.
    Well said, and this is why I get so angry at "Threshold" and "Dear Doctor". Evolution doesn't work that way.
    jonsills wrote: »
    Jon's post, supplemental: Don't bother trying to argue with Worffan about the Talaxians. His opinion, so far as he is concerned, is Objective Fact, and failure to agree utterly with him can only indicate either mental or moral failure. He intends to be a scientist one day; I hope he grows beyond this attitude first, or it will hamper his career dramatically.

    Completely ignorant of every bit of evidence I've shown that objectively proves the abject incompetence of Neelix and the uselessness of every Talaxian onscreen. Also a pointless personal attack that frankly I thought you better than.

    Try watching Voyager. Especially "Threshold", "The Cloud", "Basics", "Elogium", "Parturition", and every other episode that has Neelix in it.

    Then play "Reunion". And "All That Glitters". How many Talaxians act in a competent fashion or lift so much as a finger to defend themselves?

    The canonical incompetence of Talaxians isn't just my opinion, it's the inescapable conclusion of the compilation of evidence.
  • marcusdkanemarcusdkane Member Posts: 7,439 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    worffan101 wrote: »
    There's a difference between saying that it wasn't as serious (and I believe that that was only the case because of writer fiat; every man and woman I know would be screaming blue murder and trying to kill that alien in Trip's situation) and saying that it was OK and funny because he didn't act like someone's idea of how a traumatized person should act.
    And I can honestly counter that in the negative... As I said the other day, simply because you are spending time with like-minded peers, that does not make your(group) opinion the definitive. The volume of adherents to a belief, does not make it any more valid. I would have thought that someone who prides themself on their analytical and scientific thought processes would acknowledge that... (believing in religion doesn't make it fact, the amount of people having unsafe sex doesn't make it a good idea etc) As viewers, we're not saying that it's OK, Trip, by not pressing charges was saying it was okay (and writers cannot be taken into account, because if one is to view everything through the perspective of what the author may or may not think and may or not be making a character say, one might as well not engage with fiction on any medium, because that level of 'awareness' simply takes the point out of all of everything...) I didn't find the occurence funny, but I didn't find it offensive either, and separate fiction from real-world events.

    Excuse me while I go and light a candle for the soul of Heather MacLeod ;)
    worffan101 wrote: »
    From the KAZON.

    That's like taking the ship back from bacteria. The Kazon literally killed themselves plugging in the equivalent of a refrigerator.

    Any special ed class in the universe could take a ship back from the Kazon. I know children--YOUNG children--who are smarter than the Kazon. Saying that some Talaxians were once better than the Kazon is like saying they were once better than a mushroom you found under a rotting log.
    A Zulu waving a spear might not know how to turn on a TV, but that doesn't mean they are irrelevant, unworthy of respect, or incapable of being dangerous ;)
  • worffan101worffan101 Member Posts: 9,518 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    gulberat wrote: »
    We know in Star Trek retrospect that humanity is oddly subject to reproducing with other species without medical help. A quirk in our DNA and biology makes us particularly vulnerable. But in ENT, as we see in Terra Prime, our species is not yet developed enough to fully comprehend or have come to grips with that fact, which at the least makes Ah'len criminally irresponsible.

    (In later series I am sure it is a "known galactic fact" to use extra precautions with humans because they are easy to harm sexually or get/cause an unplanned pregnancy.)

    Yeah, the sheer number of half-Human hybrids is...exceptional. Human/Klingon, Human/Klingon again, 3/4 Klingon 1/4 Human, 5/8 Klingon 1/8 Human (in STO), 3/4 Human 1/4 Klingon, Human/Vulcan, Human/Romulan (and backcrosses), Human/Napean...

    I know there were Cardassian/Bajoran and Klingon/Romulan, and Bajoran/Klingon is canon in STO and Trill/Klingon was possible, but still, Humans are ridiculously prolific.

    Gotta wonder how many illegitimate kids Kirk has; that would be quite the scandal for SFC. And a major reason to take the Kirk Method with a massive chunk of salt.
  • antonine3258antonine3258 Member Posts: 2,391 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    Okay - I left for a few hours, what on Earth happened in here?

    I think with the 'later' Prime Directive being 'keep out at all costs' as the directive handing down... did something really bad happen off-screen? That sounds like prime fanfic fodder to justify some on-screen writing that handled the PD poorly as a storytelling tool (which was a weird trend, usually things get subtler as they're handled more, but..)


    On TNG, did we ever see an 'unjustified' incursion - something like 'Piece of the Action' which was an accident, or deliberate cultural manipulation?
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  • worffan101worffan101 Member Posts: 9,518 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    And I can honestly counter that in the negative... As I said the other day, simply because you are spending time with like-minded peers, that does not make your(group) opinion the definitive. The volume of adherents to a belief, does not make it any more valid. I would have thought that someone who prides themself on their analytical and scientific thought processes would acknowledge that... (believing in religion doesn't make it fact, the amount of people having unsafe sex doesn't make it a good idea etc) As viewers, we're not saying that it's OK, Trip, by not pressing charges was saying it was okay (and writers cannot be taken into account, because if one is to view everything through the perspective of what the author may or may not think and may or not be making a character say, one might as well not engage with fiction on any medium, because that level of 'awareness' simply takes the point out of all of everything...) I didn't find the occurence funny, but I didn't find it offensive either, and separate fiction from real-world events.
    Fine. Every man and woman I know face-to-face would be screaming blue murder in that situation.

    It's still an awful violation, and if the writers hadn't said "oh, TRIBBLE biology!" Trip would've died in agony from that ectopic. I could not maintain my suspension of disbelief because on a legal level, what that woman did was very much a criminal crime, rather than a matter of civil cases.

    Frankly, what is offensive is a function of society. It's different from what's legal or morally right. Saying "I know sixty people who find X offensive and 3 who don't, therefore given the evidence I think it's offensive" is as objective as you can make such a subject.
    Excuse me while I go and light a candle for the soul of Heather MacLeod ;)
    Sentiment seconded.
    A Zulu waving a spear might not know how to turn on a TV, but that doesn't mean they are irrelevant, unworthy of respect, or incapable of being dangerous ;)

    Bad comparison. The Zulu Empire was a refined, highly trained war machine, and (unfamiliar with modern technology as they may have been) its soldiers were competent and lethally efficient, and its commanders dangerously intelligent. Just ask Lord Chelmsford.

    The Kazon, by comparison, consider ZERG RUSH to be high strategy and were unable to safely plug in a replicator despite having it (and presumably an instruction manual) literally given to them by Seska.

    The Zulu Empire was a dangerously powerful, highly organized war machine. The Kazon sects are a bunch of barely-sentient thugs squabbling over peanuts.
  • drreverenddrreverend Member Posts: 459 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    worffan101 wrote: »
    Well said, and this is why I get so angry at "Threshold" and "Dear Doctor". Evolution doesn't work that way.

    I have the same reaction to "The Chase," as the whole Preservers thing really rubs me the wrong way and is completely nonsensical and anti-science. To put it simply, the Voth have more in common biologically with Humans than Humans do with Vulcans.
  • worffan101worffan101 Member Posts: 9,518 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    drreverend wrote: »
    I have the same reaction to "The Chase," as the whole Preservers thing really rubs me the wrong way and is completely nonsensical and anti-science. To put it simply, the Voth have more in common biologically with Humans than Humans do with Vulcans.

    The Preservers actually make it make sense.

    They've been actively TRIBBLE with the DNA of every potentially sentient species in the universe for billions of years. That explains the rubber-forehead-aliens BS MUCH better than random chance.
  • antonine3258antonine3258 Member Posts: 2,391 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    drreverend wrote: »
    I have the same reaction to "The Chase," as the whole Preservers thing really rubs me the wrong way and is completely nonsensical and anti-science. To put it simply, the Voth have more in common biologically with Humans than Humans do with Vulcans.

    Well, it was more a series of DNA items 'left' on the planets than full biological compatibility, at least that seemed the 'intent' of the episode to me - a series of small commonalities across dozens of worlds that linked to the small holoprogram.

    And Galen did more or less get laughed out of his profession, so they found it equally silly in universe.
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  • gulberatgulberat Member Posts: 5,505 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    drreverend wrote: »
    I have the same reaction to "The Chase," as the whole Preservers thing really rubs me the wrong way and is completely nonsensical and anti-science. To put it simply, the Voth have more in common biologically with Humans than Humans do with Vulcans.

    That one does not offend me because we are talking about deliberate artificial manipulation as opposed to allowing natural processes to work. The technology is way beyond anything I know of, to sustain it for the billion(s) of years necessary to ensure the outcome, so IRL I would consider the idea nearly zero. But in fiction I can more easily suspend disbelief on deliberate manipulation above asserting that "unaided" evolution (excepting any beliefs in deity that people feel are behind the design...which doesn't require any change in the science, BTW) works in a way that it doesn't, or that sentient species are akin to animals who have no say in the future shaping of their species, when technology and free will means that they have already overridden the strict law of nature by default.

    (And again I "even" consider a species as technologically primitive as the Nibiru to have overridden nature and become its steward as opposed to its servant, even if they are comparatively at the beginning of working out how they will exercise that power and stewardship.)

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  • rambowdoubledashrambowdoubledash Member Posts: 298 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    worffan101 wrote: »
    They've been actively TRIBBLE with the DNA of every potentially sentient species in the universe for billions of years. That explains the rubber-forehead-aliens BS MUCH better than random chance.

    Budgetary concerns explain it even better, of course...
  • worffan101worffan101 Member Posts: 9,518 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    gulberat wrote: »
    (And again I "even" consider a species as technologically primitive as the Nibiru to have overridden nature and become its steward as opposed to its servant, even if they are comparatively at the beginning of working out how they will exercise that power and stewardship.)

    It's not so much overriding nature as becoming a keystone species, like a beaver...

    Humans and other sentients are just as subject to natural laws as any other species.
  • drreverenddrreverend Member Posts: 459 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    worffan101 wrote: »
    The Preservers actually make it make sense.

    They've been actively TRIBBLE with the DNA of every potentially sentient species in the universe for billions of years. That explains the rubber-forehead-aliens BS MUCH better than random chance.

    Except there are a great number of Trek sentient and Federation members that are non-humanoid, though rarely shown on-screen because of obvious budgetary reasons, but they are regularly mentioned as being around.

    My problem is that it basically says that the default, prodignor humanoid of the galaxy... is a bald white guy. Which has some really unfortunate implications. At least they didn't give it blue eyes.

    That and it was a thing that didn't need to be explained or investigated, as, yeah, we all kind of accepted it as a limitation of the budget and tech. It's like the shinobi in Japanese theater, they're really just stagehands. Yes, we can see the guys lurking about in black pajamas, but we're going to ignore them because we know they're not really there. Likewise, the rubber foreheads are just a visual shorthand to say "This is an alien" because we don't have non-humanoid actors available on Earth. By drawing attention to it, they made it worse with their "revelation" that makes no sense anyways.

    Also, Galen's claims could have been settled in about five minutes by simply looking at the DNA. Voth DNA, if it's Terran in origin, should have about a 60% commonality with Humans (this is the same amount with have with chickens, incidentally).

    Then again, TNG and onwards had this really weird luddite streak to their writers and attitudes.
  • gulberatgulberat Member Posts: 5,505 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    worffan101 wrote: »
    It's not so much overriding nature as becoming a keystone species, like a beaver...

    Humans and other sentients are just as subject to natural laws as any other species.

    Well, you are right in the sense that if you do something like subject a human to zero G (free fall) on a prolonged basis, he or she will suffer ill effects from it. And we do have some instincts, like the one to withdraw from a painful stimulus, that are harder to fight than others.

    But given that we are learning to do stuff like manipulate our genes, and that our technology, agriculture, and other practices have affected our bodies, what happens to us is now as much a result of our decisions as it is mere natural law, even on the species-wide evolutionary level. As technology gets even more widespread and entrenched, the effect will only intensify as we select by our own decisions what traits we consider favorable and which ones we either don't care about, or dislike.

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  • worffan101worffan101 Member Posts: 9,518 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    gulberat wrote: »
    Well, you are right in the sense that if you do something like subject a human to zero G (free fall) on a prolonged basis, he or she will suffer ill effects from it. And we do have some instincts, like the one to withdraw from a painful stimulus, that are harder to fight than others.

    But given that we are learning to do stuff like manipulate our genes, and that our technology, agriculture, and other practices have affected our bodies, what happens to us is now as much a result of our decisions as it is mere natural law, even on the species-wide evolutionary level. As technology gets even more widespread and entrenched, the effect will only intensify as we select by our own decisions what traits we consider favorable and which ones we either don't care about, or dislike.

    Perhaps.

    I can't comment on transhumanism and don't particularly want to do so. I will say, however, that at the pre-industrial and even industrial level, sentients are VERY much a part of nature rather than apart from nature.
  • trillbuffettrillbuffet Member Posts: 861 Arc User
    edited April 2015
    The only prime directive here is to grind lol.

    Anything else must come in the form of a credit card or they do not care lol :P
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