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-   -   officers are called 'sir' (http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=189097)

magarity September 24 2012 06:33 AM

officers are called 'sir'
 
When Trip first meets his new captain on the Columbia he actually called her ma'am. No, no, no. Senior officers are called sir regardless of gender. Wasn't there even a scene in Voyager's first episode or so where this was explained for everyone who didn't already know?

teacake September 24 2012 06:40 AM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
JANEWAY: Gentlemen, welcome aboard Voyager.
KIM: Thank you, sir.
JANEWAY: Mister Kim, at ease before you sprain something. Ensign, despite Starfleet protocol, I don't like being addressed as sir.
KIM: I'm sorry, ma'am.
JANEWAY: Ma'am is acceptable in a crunch, but I prefer Captain.

Voy, Caretaker

Bry_Sinclair September 24 2012 06:59 AM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Maybe it's just his southern charm?

That was something that annoyed me with Janeway, not wanting to be called "sir". When she was a rank grade lower, did she insist on being addressed as Commandher or Cowomander, so as to offset the 'man' in the title?

It's protocol dear, just accept it, get over yourself and move on.

IndyJones September 24 2012 07:25 AM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Quote:

magarity wrote: (Post 7006315)
When Trip first meets his new captain on the Columbia he actually called her ma'am. No, no, no. Senior officers are called sir regardless of gender. Wasn't there even a scene in Voyager's first episode or so where this was explained for everyone who didn't already know?

There's no reason why the protocol couldn't change over the 150+ years between Enterprise and Voyager.

horatio83 September 24 2012 07:27 AM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Claiming that something cannot be said in Trek because it runs counter to military tradition is just plain crazy.
I would never call anybody Sir by the way, it is a stupid word from aristocratic times and deserves to die out.

Shatinator September 24 2012 06:20 PM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Quote:

horatio83 wrote: (Post 7006453)
Claiming that something cannot be said in Trek because it runs counter to military tradition is just plain crazy.
I would never call anybody Sir by the way, it is a stupid word from aristocratic times and deserves to die out.


You clearly don't live anywhere near the South (US). Most people despite of age use "Sir" and "Ma'am" as a sign of respect. Nothing 'crazy' 'bout it, just being courteous.

:p

Jinglekitty September 24 2012 06:31 PM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Quote:

horatio83 wrote: (Post 7006453)
I would never call anybody Sir by the way, it is a stupid word from aristocratic times and deserves to die out.

I disagree.
The use of sir, ma'am or miss is just a way of addressing someone you're speaking with.

Ríu ríu, chíu September 24 2012 06:54 PM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
First: Earth Starfleet is not the same organization as the Federation Starfleet. The latter is military; the former is not. So protocol is likely to be different.

Second: Of course Janeway doesn't like to be called 'Sir'. Janeway is female! Sir is a male term. You want to talk to a female superior officer, call her "ma'am", because it bloody well makes logical sense. People outside the military use the word "ma'am", so why shouldn't they use it IN the military?

Third: Strange as it may seem, there are - or were, I don't know if this shit still goes on - some extremely radical feminist groups who make up words like "womyn" and "herstory" because they don't like any word with "man" or "his" in it. :guffaw:

Middleman September 24 2012 07:08 PM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Keep in mind that the Enterprise Era is about 200 years before Voyager.

horatio83 September 24 2012 07:12 PM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Quote:

Shatinator wrote: (Post 7007902)
Quote:

horatio83 wrote: (Post 7006453)
Claiming that something cannot be said in Trek because it runs counter to military tradition is just plain crazy.
I would never call anybody Sir by the way, it is a stupid word from aristocratic times and deserves to die out.


You clearly don't live anywhere near the South (US). Most people despite of age use "Sir" and "Ma'am" as a sign of respect. Nothing 'crazy' 'bout it, just being courteous.

:p

It's a stupid word from aristocratic times. Strange that you guys in the US who got rid off monarchies earlier than European on average cherish such non-egalitarian language.

Furthermore what you said is simply wrong, sir is often used as formal way to address somebody and doesn't imply any respect.

Gaith September 24 2012 08:12 PM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Quote:

horatio83 wrote: (Post 7008115)
Furthermore what you said is simply wrong, sir is often used as formal way to address somebody and doesn't imply any respect.

This says far more about you than it does about the current meaning behind the term's usage.

horatio83 September 24 2012 08:18 PM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Hardly as there is no equivalent of Sir in my native tongue.
If somebody wants to interview a powerful person from politics or business he will call him sir even if he totally dislikes the interviewee. If I were a journalist and would be able to get an interview with Dick Cheney I would call him sir while believing that he is a dick.

This is hardly surprising, all formal forms of courtesy are basically empty and serve mainly one purpose, to create a necessary distance between people. The best example is when you run into somebody else. You retreat and apologize because you invaded his private space, you recreate the distance, you don't warmly embrace him or her.
Back to sir, I have been called sir once precisely in order to signal the increase of personal distance. We got along well but now I want a slighter cooler relationship.

MacLeod September 24 2012 08:18 PM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Sir is still commonly used,

Wereghost September 24 2012 08:48 PM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
The usage of "sir" for female military superiors in Trek (and BSG) is grating, arguably misogynistic and (as far as I know) possibly Ron Moore's idea as it turned up in TNG once or twice.

Apparently, though, senior naval officers have traditionally referred to juniors using "mister" regardless of gender, so the cringeworthy use of "Mister Saavik" in whichever movie Saavik first appeared in might not be incorrect.

Merry Christmas September 24 2012 09:08 PM

Re: officers are called 'sir'
 
Referring to a female officer as "sir," is (iirc) the current practice in the United States Coast Guard.

I very commonly refer to people as sir (or ma'am), it's how I was raised. I use it just about daily with my male friends. Saying something like "Sir, you are wrong," just rolls off the tongue.

Quote:

horatio83 wrote: (Post 7008115)
it is a stupid word from aristocratic times and deserves to die out.

It is even more widely used in Latin America countries, not referring to someone (especially if they are older) as Señor or Señora is very disrespectful.

Quote:

I would never call anybody Sir by the way
Using terms like sir shows that you are bem cultivado (well cultured).

Quote:

Strange that you guys in the US who got rid off monarchies earlier than European on average cherish such non-egalitarian language.
One of the reasons America separated from Britain was that we didn't feel that we were being treated with respect by Britain, why would we dispense with important societal practice like sir?

Quote:

horatio83 wrote: (Post 7006453)
Claiming that something cannot be said in Trek because it runs counter to military tradition is just plain crazy.

Like it or not, Starfleet is the armed forces of the Federation, they possess a military hierarchy, and military customs and courtesies.

:)


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