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Old November 23 2012, 09:03 PM   #16
Christopher
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

^Yes, I mentioned that baby in my post and included a link to a photo of it.
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Old November 24 2012, 12:59 AM   #17
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

Christopher wrote: View Post
Presumably they took Miramanee's ancestors because they saw that the Native Americans were endangered by European diseases and colonization.
If that was their intent. But if the preserver's desire was to establish an intelligent species upon a world that had none, and they were somewhat limited in the numbers people (and goods) they could move, then relocating a primitive hunter/gather people would make more sense than relocating a somewhat more advance people, like those who existed elsewhere on Earth at the same time period.

Miramanee's ancestors could have been basically "dumped" in the middle of a lush forest with little more than the clothes on their backs, and have been reasonable expected to survive and prosper. Over the course of tens of thousands of years, Miramanee's people would populate the world and eventual perhaps become a technological people.

As pointed out, if helping Miramanee's ancestors was the primary aim, then that particular world (one needing a deflector) was a poor choice. If helping Miramanee's ancestors wasn't the goal, then filling a niche may have been.

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Old November 24 2012, 01:27 AM   #18
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

T'Girl wrote: View Post
If that was their intent. But if the preserver's desire was to establish an intelligent species upon a world that had none, and they were somewhat limited in the numbers people (and goods) they could move, then relocating a primitive hunter/gather people would make more sense than relocating a somewhat more advance people, like those who existed elsewhere on Earth at the same time period.
That's a very antiquated and misinformed perception of the Native Americans. Spock said that Miramanee's people were based on a mix of Delaware (i.e. Lenape), Navajo, and "Mohicans" (by which he must've meant Mahican or Mohegan, unless James Fenimore Cooper's novels take place in the Trek universe). None of those were hunter-gatherer peoples at the time of European contact. The Lenape were farmers; the Mahican and other Algonquians had a seasonal economy including horticulture or farming as well as hunting and fishing. The Navajo had adopted farming from the Pueblo peoples. And they all engaged in the extensive trade network that linked them with the great population centers like Cahokia and the Pueblos. But it was because of their active trade network that the diseases brought by early European settlers and traders were able to spread so far ahead of European settlement, killing 90 percent or more of the population of the Americas. The survivors retreated from their population centers into smaller, more nomadic communities in order to avoid the plagues, and formerly developed lands fell fallow and grew wild again. Then the Europeans finally got there and falsely assumed the lands had always been wild and the indigenous people were "primitives." And sadly that myth persists to this day.
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Old November 24 2012, 01:54 AM   #19
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

Christopher wrote: View Post
None of those were hunter-gatherer peoples at the time of European contact.
I didn't say anything about "... at the time of European contact." That's a part of your scenario.

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Old November 24 2012, 03:13 AM   #20
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

I love you all, but to get back to the original question, please look up the definition of "species" before sharing.

There is only one human species. By definition, that's all there can be. Our nearest past and present relatives, Neanderthal and chimps, are not members of our species, despite the fact that chimps share 99 percent of our DNA. I doubt that genetic drift over even two millenia would make Romulans a species distinct from Vulancanoids (although their buggy TNG foreheads definitely need explanation.)
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Old November 24 2012, 03:34 AM   #21
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

T'Girl wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post
None of those were hunter-gatherer peoples at the time of European contact.
I didn't say anything about "... at the time of European contact." That's a part of your scenario.

Because it pretty much has to be. One of the greatest mistakes people make about indigenous cultures is assuming they were always exactly as they were at the time of contact, and that's nonsense. In reality, they're as dynamic and changeable as any culture. Perhaps more so in this case. These were mobile communities, interacting and trading extensively, with people moving from one community to another, communities going from more sedentary to more migratory lifestyle patterns as climate changed and rivers altered course, etc.

So if Spock was able to recognize the characteristics of specific communities, it stands to reason that those communities were taken from Earth around the time they were first documented by Europeans. Much earlier and they might've been too different to be identifiable -- particularly the Navajo, who were going through quite a lot of development and change during that period.

There's also the fact that, as I said, North America before European contact was a far more populous and developed continent than it was after European diseases devastated the population. So your premise that the Preservers would've sought a relatively isolated and "primitive" population would only even come close to reality after European settlement.

Besides, we know what the Preservers' motives were from their own words. It wasn't just speculation that they were rescuing endangered populations -- Spock learned that by translating the text in their obelisk. As he stated it, "They passed through the galaxy rescuing primitive cultures which were in danger of extinction and seeding them, so to speak, where they could live and grow." And the only time in known history when the Navajo, Delaware, and Mahican or Mohegan peoples would've all been in simultaneous danger of extinction was after European colonization. So the only possible time the Preservers could've taken those people from Earth was in the 17th or early 18th century.
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Old November 24 2012, 02:44 PM   #22
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

Besides, we know what the Preservers' motives were from their own words.
We might do well to remember what such publicly written testaments in Earth history generally tend to be - rather crude attempts at deception, self-boasting and whitewashing...

The scenario where the Preserves leave their Preservate behind and move on to new good deeds suffers rather significantly from the fact that the Preservate was a deathtrap. Indeed, the message was left on an instrument that was an integral part of the deathtrap, showing the Preserves were fully aware of the threat! Preservation of a culture also appears hopeless when the very survival of the culture depends on its perversion to serve the needs of the instrument left behind. (There'd be nothing left of the mobility of the communities, say.)

On the other hand, the scenario here differs from the one with the Briori or the Skagarrans in that there is no direct evidence of the evil masters being overthrown - or even of them spending any appreciable time with the abductees. Did the native Americans simply forget faster than the European Americans who for their part kept the memory of Briori and Skag cruelty and demise alive for a comparable length of time?

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Old November 24 2012, 04:15 PM   #23
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

Overthinking 'R' Us.
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Old November 26 2012, 01:07 PM   #24
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

Well, sure. But "Paradise Syndrome" was seriously underthought originally. Why does Kirk take it upon himself to stop a single asteroid from what he knows is a steady rain of such rocks, in some distant and unsurveyed system far away from Starfleet's regular patrol areas? Why doesn't he pay attention to the fact that the rain has had no effect on the target world so far? He doesn't even seem to know whether the target world is worth saving, which is why he beams down to have a look. And that look reveals a minuscule community of people whom the starship could easily evacuate in the two months allotted - but no attempt is made to start the evacuation, even though such is standard practice for Kirk, quite regardless of whether the evacuees are cooperative or hostile!

All of which could have perfectly logical explanations, even when the writer could come up with none... It's not necessary to dismiss "Paradise Syndrome" as the hack job it is, because having unexplained mysteries is actually a positive thing in science fiction!

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Old November 26 2012, 02:29 PM   #25
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

Timo wrote: View Post
Well, sure. But "Paradise Syndrome" was seriously underthought originally. Why does Kirk ...
After Kirk disappears, why doesn't Spock almost immediately realize that he must be inside the obelisk? Spock stated earlier that he couldn't scan through the alloy into the obelisk, likely the only place on the planet surface he couldn't scan.

a minuscule community of people
Kirk asked Spock for the "nearest concentration of life forms," suggesting perhaps that there were other concentrations. Life forms in Trek-speak means intelligent beings. If the transplanted populace had been on the planet for multiple centuries (or millenniums) then there would have been more than those in the one nearest community.

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Old November 26 2012, 03:15 PM   #26
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

^As I stated, it's impossible that they'd been there for millennia. The only credible possibility is that they were taken in the 17th or 18th century. This is something too many people overlook: That the Preservers are a group from modern times, not ancient times or prehistory.

But yes, there would have to be multiple population centers. We're talking about cultures that were at least semi-migratory, and from the look of their dwellings, that hadn't changed in the centuries since their abduction. It's reasonable to expect that they branched out into multiple bands/villages of a size that was sustainable for that kind of subsistence pattern, spread out far enough that each had enough territory to provide necessary resources.

Also, we know they had fighters, like Salish, so it follows logically that they had rivals. Like their ancestors, they probably had periodic raids or warfare between communities, probably took hostages from rival communities and adopted them into their own to take the place of individuals lost to combat or disease, etc.
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Old November 26 2012, 05:53 PM   #27
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

The thing is, the village of Miramanee must have been the planetary capital, due to being the only one with an obelisk. But do we actually see any signs of the related interaction with lesser settlements? I mean, there have been repeated signs from the heavens "since the last harvest", yet there aren't concerned envoys from faraway settlements in evidence when the Elders meet.*

Spock sees e.g. Mohican characteristics in a settlement that must be absolutely static and non-nomadic; so perhaps what he sees does not include major, characteristic things like inter-tribal trade, but rather minor and incidental things such as dressing code?

Overall, the idea of a single settlement being the mixture of the three cultures listed would speak of a fundamental change in all three cultures, would it not? Unless Spock were seeing traders from two cultures visiting a third, but it doesn't sound like that at all.

Timo Saloniemi

* The signs were basically global, involving darkening skies. If those were other asteroids zooming past, were they clean misses - or does this mean the planet has more deflectors elsewhere, implying other settlements that refuse to talk with this one on obelisk issues? Or were the darkenings just artifacts created by the obelisk to summon the Medicine Man to the controls? The issue is incredibly muddled: apparently, the deflector requires manual control, but nobody alive knows how to operate it. Evidently, the obelisk will teach the necessary skills when needed, but this calls for the student to enter the obelisk, and nobody knows enough to do that, either. "Legends" tell of previous asteroid encounters, but as Christopher says, these people have only been here for a couple of centuries - why are their memories so piss-poor?
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Old November 26 2012, 06:50 PM   #28
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

I'd say there would have to be other deflectors around the planet. While I'm sure the writers didn't think it thru this far at the time, there's no guaranteeing that ONE deflector would be on the right side of the planet to fire the beam in the right direction at the right time.
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Old November 26 2012, 08:07 PM   #29
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

I love you all, but to get back to the original question, please look up the definition of "species" before sharing.

There is only one human species. By definition, that's all there can be. Our nearest past and present relatives, Neanderthal and chimps, are not members of our species, despite the fact that chimps share 99 percent of our DNA.
As far as we can tell in the real world, there is only one human species. Here's something to consider though. Are those advanced scanning device of the 24th century that can so easily differentiate a human from a Vulcan or a Klingon from a Cardassian tell the difference between a native of Beta III and a native of Eminiar VII? That's never specifically stated. In "Caretaker", when the whole crew was on the Array, Kim's tricorder was able to identify "a Vulcan and several humans", although Chakotay's Maquis cell was later established to include at least three Bajorans (one of whom turned out to be a Cardassian) and a Bolian.

I'm not suggesting something similar to the universe of Stargate where a lot of planets they visit are inhabited by "ancient offshoots" of humans courtesy of the Goa'uld. How big a role the Preservers and the ancient humanoids from "The Chase", though, is certainly worthy of speculation.

I address a few of these issues in one of my recent blog postings, even reemphasizing that while Star Trek was a very low budget series in the 1960's, at least some "in-universe" explanation was provided for the Klingons of that era first hinted at in "Trials and Tribble-ations" and ironed out even more on ST:Enterprise.
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Old November 26 2012, 08:43 PM   #30
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Re: Why no comment on the number of human species?

there's no guaranteeing that ONE deflector would be on the right side of the planet to fire the beam in the right direction at the right time.
Now that would depend on time window issues we don't know much about. An incoming asteroid might be at deflection range for several weeks, providing a daily window of intercept for an arbitrarily located single deflector.

Of course, this is another area where the episode drops the ball. How fast did that asteroid move? Many things about it actually suggest relativistic speeds, which supports the idea that the Amerinds were deliberately placed in harm's way, and the harm furthermore was quite "synthetic" in nature.

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