Something always bothered me about Amok Time. Kirk and McCoy openly disrespect an ancient Vulcan tradition and decieve one of the most respected leaders on their world. Obviously, the Vulcans figured out that Kirk's death was a sham and McCoy had lied to them. Was there not any type of repercussions over this? I'd think that Star Fleet would be livid over the blatant disregard for the safety of fellow officers by Spock not to mention the three of them were in collusion to defraud some of the most influential Vulcans. Plus, I'd think that the Vulcans would be highly upset that their sacred traditons were mocked like this.
Spock didn't know T'Pring was going to challenge; therefore, the three of them could not have been in collusion to defraud anyone.
McCoy gave Kirk a drug that simulated death, but since he wanted Kirk alive and Spock not to have to face a murder charge (he didn't know T'Pau would invoke the equivalent of "diplomatic immunity" for the occasion), I'd hardly call that a "mockery" of Vulcan traditions.
If anyone "mocked" Vulcan traditions, it was T'Pring. She was not acting in good faith (logical faith?). She didn't care whether Spock lived or died. She just wanted his property, and would have carried on with Stonn whether Spock was still alive or not.
The Umbrella Corporation wrote:
Ignorance of the law is no excuse.
Presumably a Starship Captain, a representative of the Federation should know this.
So he's suppose to know the local laws and customs of hundreds of Federation worlds? I think that is a little much to expect of anyone.
Maybe that's one of the reasons Picard was assigned a Counsellor (Deanna did occasionally advise Picard on points of law and diplomacy). Starfleet learned from all the times Kirk got into trouble!
It's also apparently the first time either Kirk or McCoy have set foot on Vulcan, and not even Spock warned them of the details of the ceremony before beaming down.
Spock expected a straightforward ceremony. He had no idea that T'Pring intended to challenge, and therefore had no reason to tell Kirk that "Oh, by the way, Captain, if she doesn't want me, I will have to fight someone to the death and it might be you."
The Dead Mixer wrote:
^My take on T'Pau's responsibility for allowing Kirk to put himself in danger is that she gave them every opportunity to leave or back out, but she wasn't going to volunteer any information about what was involved, reinforcing the whole pattern of behavior of Vulcans trying to keep this side of themselves secret.
Her clout as a Federation VIP, which got Kirk off the hook with Starfleet, and the private nature of what was involved, would have protected her from any repercussions for endangering Kirk...and the fact that she had allowed Kirk to get into a situation in which he had to kill or be killed by his best friend, added to the private nature of the proceedings, would have kept her from pushing the matter of Kirk and McCoy having "cheated"...so as far as anybody getting in trouble for this, it was a wash, on to the next episode.
I suspect that some details of the Vulcan mating customs did get out into the public domain after this incident, possibly initiated by T'Pau, to stop something like this from happening again. Hence Droxine's knowledge. And once it was officially out there, it would have been illogical for Spock to deny it when asked.
Logically, T'Pau should
have been completely honest with Kirk that it was a death-duel before he accepted.
As for word getting out about Vulcan customs... some of the fanfic that deals with the aftermath of this episode has Amanda
telling people about it. Sure, Amanda wasn't present at the ceremony. But she would have heard about it, been angry with T'Pring, and upset enough to make it known that T'Pring was not to be trusted, and that while some secrets are understandable, it can be dangerous to take them to such an extreme.
A beaker full of death wrote:
T'Pau represented the old guard; the Orthodoxy. Is it any coincidence they cast an Eastern European, with a thick accent, in the part?
I thought it was because her accent conveyed the idea of "this ceremony would normally be conducted in the Vulcan language, but I am making a concession to offworlders who don't speak Vulcan."