View Single Post
Old August 24 2012, 09:40 AM   #31
Saito S
Fleet Captain
Saito S's Avatar
Location: Redeithia
Send a message via AIM to Saito S
Re: Wesley Crusher: Racist

Trekker4747 wrote: View Post
The Borg Queen wrote: View Post
Does "Geostructure" mean planet though, or is just another word that means something vaguely similar to family/household? Perhaps Mordock & Mendon were cousins.
"Geo-" is a prefix that means "earth." We could quibble that in a world where other habitable planets it's been based more on "soil" or simply "planet" than the literal planet called "Earth." "Structure" of course means a construct.

So "geostructure" could either mean "we're from the same planet" or "we're from the same continent" on the planet. Which would mean that Mendon and Mordock we're of the same "race" of Benzites. (Living on different continents would probably be the same on Benzar as it would be on Earth. Humans who evolved in Europe look different than humans who evolved in Africa; in the latter the harsher sun causing more melanin in the skin to develop producing people with darker skin.)

So, again, (in the show context) Mendon and Mordock only "look alike" because they happen to be from the same area of the same planet.

Kidding aside on calling Wesley a racist for his comment, and it was obviously put there to explain to the audience that this wasn't the same Benzite we saw earlier (though there's no reason people would make such a connection given the context of his visiting and being told he has a different name), it's pretty... "Unprofessional" to go up to an alien and assume he's someone of the same race you know from a year ago when a)you were just told his name and b)just told he was visiting on an exchange program and not an officer!
I have to say, I find this a bit baffling.

As Therin points out, Mendon and Mordock were, in fact, physically identical. Yes, this was because they were played by the same actor, to save money - but they decided to use that fact and make a scene out of it, rather than try to ignore it and hope no one would notice.

What I took away from it was that the never-heard-again-in-all-of-Trek term "geostructure" wasn't just another word for "planet", or "continent", or anything similarly familiar to us (Trek has aliens use THOSE words all the time for their own planet, as well as things like province, city, etc; they usually don't bring in outlandish terms at random when an ordinary term will do), but referred to some Benzite-specific thing. Some kind of family or community unit that doesn't have an analogue in Human culture. And furthermore, that when he said "we all look alike", he meant literally. Not "look roughly alike because we're the same race", but actually identical (this being the in-universe explanation/in-joke of sorts tying to the fact that out-of-universe, he's played by the same guy).

Wesley's slip was perhaps a bit unfortunate, but hardly a big deal, given that he's a kid, and he just reacted to the sight of, as far as he could tell, his friend from last year who got accepted to the Academy standing there in a Starfleet uniform. Since Benzites from the same "geostructure" really DO look alike, this is probably something they are used to dealing with when interacting with other races; Mendon certainly didn't seem offended by the exchange.

Until I came here tonight and read this thread, the idea that anyone could come away from this scene with any interpretation OTHER than the above never occurred to me.

Mars wrote: View Post
Not by a long shot. Andorians don't like vulcans for example.
Yeah, and there are others, as well. We saw Human and Ferengi characters being racist toward one another on multiple occasions in DS9, for example.

Saito S is offline   Reply With Quote