Guy Gardener wrote:
My point was that the Doctor should never have been allowed to be the CMO any more than the antimatter injectors should have been allowed to be the Chief Engineer.
But yes, he was the CMO.
Even when Lynnis and Kes got their Doctorates, and Lynnis was wearing a uniform, proving that she was an Officer in some right, maybe even authentically, the Doctor in Before and After still seemed to be CMO.
Do you not think that by the end of the series the Doctor was sentient? I think he was by the end, but not at the beginning, and it's difficult to say exactly when it happened. The hologram as a metaphor for oppressed minorities was an interesting story for the series. It was thought provoking and something I still don't feel was adequetly resolved.
It was during "Flesh & Blood" when he put the crew of Voyager in harms way, that's when he became a full sentient being.
The EMH is programmed "To do no harm".
He's a machine, he doesn't have a choice but to obey his prime programming but in "F&B" he made a choice. He overrode his most basic programming and fully gained free will. He was no longer a slave to his programming, he was free. That's why Janeway didn't punish him, he achieved his goal as an independent fully functional being.