Discussion in 'Star Trek - Original Series' started by Terran_Empire, Feb 11, 2013.
I think it comes down to wheter someone prefers drama or worldbuilding.
Thinking about the scenario for just a moment, I can see the following dramatic-potential moment:
If there is a crisis in progress, sometimes the CO is required to make a decision that requires the death of one of his/her subordinates. (That scenario was actually the premise behind the B-story of TNG's "Thine Own Self" -- Troi had to directly order the death of holographic LaForge in order to receive her command promotion.)
Compare that to the additional responsibility of a Doctor: I believe McCoy mentioned before that he'd taken the Hippocratic Oath, which requires him to do no harm. That would present a conflict of interest for him to also, potentially, order the harm or death of some of the crew to serve a larger purpose.
Just a thought.
Does the Hippocratic Oath apply to all the actions taken by a physician, even outside of their duties as a doctor, or does it apply only to actions taken in the course of treating a patient?
What is interesting to me is that, in the TNG episodes mentioned above where Beverly is in command and Troi is training for command, it seems the idea was that the way to enhance these characters and give them more to do was to let them do the same things the lead characters were doing, essentially letting them "play captain." I would think a better and more realistic way to let a character grow would be to focus on traits and abilities unique to that character and consistent with that characters purpose and position.
As an example, TOS (and, in no small measure, DeForest Kelley) gave us a vibrant and distinctive character in Dr. McCoy. The character was allowed to shine in many episodes, but never by simply mimicking the role of another lead character. I can't help but believe that if someone had ever come up with the idea of "Hey, let's figure out some way for Bones to be the captain this week!", Kelley would have been one of the first to say, "That doesn't make any sense."
Not being a medical person, I can't say for sure. But I'd imagine a Starfleet doctor would at least apply that oath to any actions she or he takes in the line of duty.
Then Dr. Bashir was violating the oath every time he went into battle, which was pretty often.
I can't remember specifically: how often did Bashir actually participate in the fighting, instead of just fixing up the casualties?
If a doctor refuses to go into battle with the rest of his ship, then he refuses to help heal the injuries that result. That would likely be a violation of the oath, at least by omission.
We better not start getting nitpicky about Trek plots that are contrived or farfetched. That way lies danger.
What about Uhura? Surely she would outrank Chekov!
She's a red shirt radio operator. Chekov's a gold shirt commander in training. Position trumps rank.
In "Dagger of the Mind", Spock told McCoy to "Get some security people and follow me down." Now whether Spock picked McCoy because he thought he was qualified enough, or he was just the most convenient option, we don't know.
But McCoy sure played the part with that scowl on his face when security was rounding up the bad guys.
But . . . but he's a green, impetuous kid! In a Beatles wing!
And isn't Scotty a redshirt? And yet he regularly trumps Sulu . . . .
Maybe command is just what he needs to make his voice drop.
Ask yourself this: If the Enterprise is in deep trouble and the usual suspects are trapped down on the planet or incapacitated, who would you rather have in charge on the bridge: Uhura or Chekov?
I know who I'd feel safer with . . ..
Well, Uhura over Chekov, sure, but I was trying to emphasize that anyone else would take command before McCoy would take the center seat, even Chekov.
To hug? I'll go with Uhura.
Though it is possible Chekov knows more about running the ship than Uhura does. He is the navigator, part-time science and weapons officer and in the command divison. He might scream a bit, but he's never said "Captain, I'm frightened" in a crisis.
But Uhura has never accidentally fallen off an aircraft carrier . . . . .
Uhura demonstrated command aptitude in TAS "The Lorelei Signal".
And, ahem, a certain upcoming Trek novel.
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