Re: Federation is inhumanly benevolent
The most "civilized and humane" societies today continue to employ threats, back-room dealings, assassination and torture among other things in order to secure their interests and they commit such acts against other humans. Considering that we so far on a whole have no qualms in coercing our fellow humans by whatever force we deem appropriate, why would we take such lengthy measures to ensure the fair treatment of aliens who often greet us with acts of aggression?
We have not gone through World War III, nor first contact.
The premise in Star Trek is that those events fundamentally altered our perceptions and values. They were transformative.
And that of course is where the hope comes from (IMHO).
“There is a cult of ignorance in the United States...The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge'.” - Isaac Asimov