Dale Sams wrote:
Or if, despite humanity's evolved sensibilities, SF is leary of letting anyone run around the universe.
That's definitly fodder for a nice story. Sort of a "Why do you think Earth is a paradise? They want us STUCK here, while the brightest of the bright take their rightful place in the heavens" conspiricy story.
The problem with this is that we've seen plenty of civilians with their own ships, including the Hansens exploring space on their own aboard their ship, the S.S. Raven
True, but they were 'authorized' and had a flight plan. Harry Mudd and the Hansens arn't exactly ringing endorsements for letting civvies run around.