Janeway's Decision to Kill Tuvix

Discussion in 'Voyager' started by Godless Raven, Apr 11, 2013.

  1. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    Maybe Janeway was having a bad hair day. The story does what it set out to do, make people think about all the moral and ethical choices. Whether we agree with Janeway or not isn't important, it's that we see the other sides of the issue. And as has been said, it's another riff on the "needs of the many" theme, which Kirk turns on its ear in TSFS.
     
  2. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    IN that episode Janeway also said that if she saw any more harvesting-ships that she blow them out of space on principle.

    Tuvix had the will of two men to live.

    Therefore Tuvix had twice the will to live than Tuvok, and twice the will of Neelix to live.

    Individually Neelix and Tuvok where both at least half as numerically significant to the mission than Tuvix.
     
  3. Captain Kathryn

    Captain Kathryn Commodore Commodore

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    I don't think it's the same since the organs are separate and Tom was not a complete fusion of two people. It would be wrong for them to just extract the heart and liver or whatnot and then you see Tom's dead body lying there, organless. I don't think the analogy is the same.

    The computer analogy seems a little more plausible.

    But honestly...let's say you and I were transporting somewhere...in a time period where transporters exist...and we became fused. At first we will recognize that it's wrong, that we are two people accidentally merged into one. But after time goes by, we start functioning as one. Then suddenly we don't want to be separated anymore because we became used to being one lifeform. However, the two people coexisting as one DO want to be separated. The voices and memories and thoughts are just too fused to say it.

    If I got sucked into a computer and the computer started claiming sentience just because it contained my mind's thoughts and memories and whatnot...I would want them to separate us. Even if it wasn't a computer.

    What if you became joined with your kid or your dad? It would just be weird. :ack:

    Also again...it's TV...you can't just kill two main characters and substitute them with a fusion-man.
     
  4. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    Though a similar artificially created person could be an interesting main cast character for a new series.
     
  5. DonIago

    DonIago Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think bringing up arguments like "it's a tv show" are dodging the issue; Janeway et al. don't know they're on a tv show.

    I also think it's rather awful to bring up things like "Tuvix was creepy!" as an argument against letting him live, even jokingly. I don't believe humans have any place saying that one life is more or less valuable than another. That's the kind of argument Khan and his cronies would have used to purge the Earth of "inferior" humans so that they could have the planet to themselves...and they'd probably also argue that in the end they would benefit more (important) people than they were harming and that it was for "the greatest good".
     
  6. Deckerd

    Deckerd Fleet Arse Premium Member

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    These all seem to be aimed at my ponts so to counter; I think it's a bit pompous to ascribe lofty ideals to what is after all a bit of space-based storytelling centred around human dilemmas. Dodgy decisions by captains abound in ST (Captain Picard excepted). Aside from that, comparing doing away with one accidental construct to recover two other people to genocide is, well, a bit OTT?
     
  7. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    Seems to me that Tuvok and Neelix were already dead, and that Janeway essentially murdered Tuvix to resurrect them.
     
  8. Deckerd

    Deckerd Fleet Arse Premium Member

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    If they were dead they can't be resurrected. That's why it's such a neat dilemma.
     
  9. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    No, it's why the episode "Tuvix" can more easily be compared to a work of fantasy (wherein death may be reversible) than a contemporary moral dilemma (since death, as we understand it today, is currently irreversible).

    Tuvok and Neelix are by any reasonable standard dead. Significant portions of mass that comprised their bodies -- including their brains -- are apparently lost after roughly half of each is combined into Tuvix. Their bodies have ceased to exist, and a new body been created. The unique mental patterns of each have ceased to exist; their minds have ceased to exist, and a new mind has been created. They are, in essence, Tuvix's deceased parents.

    And, as was asserted in the episode itself, Tuvix is, by any reasonable definition, a separate and unique individual.

    Ergo, the act of resurrecting Tuvok and Neelix inherently means killing Tuvix. The closest comparison would be to a fantasy story in which magically resurrecting two people requires killing a third.
     
  10. Pavonis

    Pavonis Commodore Commodore

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    Tuvok was salt, Neelix was water, and Tuvix was salt water. The Doctor simply found a way to separate the salt water into its original components again. Nothing was created or destroyed that wasn't already there.
     
  11. Dale Sams

    Dale Sams Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    And when nessecery to save the mother, often an infant is allowed to die or aborted.

    I really wish the episode had been better written with more analogies. Or the crux even rewritten. With Janeway having to choose between someone who has actually been born, and has a life rather than an accidental creation like Tuvix.

    I haven't watched the ep in a while. Couldn't Tuvix have just claimed that he *was* Tuvok and Neelix merged together, and that they liked being together? I don't see a problem here other than Tuvok has to be the ship chef now in his offtime.
     
  12. teya

    teya Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Um, no.

    A fetus can be aborted to save the life of the mother.

    Infanticide is illegal--in all cases.
     
  13. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    Uh, no. Sentient beings are not merely physical components. A sentient entity is a system -- especially a mind, which is a complex system of neural interactions. When that system is dismantled and its components used to create a new system, that person is therefore dead. You might as well argue that George Washington isn't really dead just because the particles that made up his body were later absorbed by other organisms.

    Besides, Tuvix clearly did not have the actual physical mass of two men; ergo, a significant amount of physical matter was lost in his creation.
     
  14. DonIago

    DonIago Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Even if Tuvix had claimed that he was best suited to represent Neelix and Tuvok's interests...and I thought that occurred during the episode...does anyone really think Janeway would have accepted that?

    Also, people can't claim that Tuvix is merely a composite of Tuvok and Neelix -and- argue that he behaved in a manner that they would not. The two concepts are antithetical.

    I would have found the episode stronger without Kes's emotional outburst, which to me played as more than a bit manipulative, especially given that a being's life was at stake. I'd like to think that if I'd been in Kes's shoes I would have been a bit more high-minded than, "I miss my boyfriend!!!"

    I'll add that I think telling Tuvix "You're one of us...unless and until we -ever- figure out a way to restore Tuvok/Neelix, at which point you're raw material," is awful. Way to treat someone as a second-class citizen due to circumstances they're blameless for.
     
  15. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    When Tuvok and Neelix used the Transporter they accepted that there was a risk no matter how small of a transporter malfunction. And Tuvix was created by a transporter malfunction.

    So in part they accepted the risk that they could die as a result of a transporter malfunction. Now they did die in a fashion being combined to form Tuvix. A fully sentient being, who should have been afforded the same rights as any other being. The Federation has principals and sometimes you don't get what you want (Tuvok and Neelix) back if you hold true to them.
     
  16. DonIago

    DonIago Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I believe I've made those points before myself. Well-said.

    I would think Starfleet must have regulations regarding how long someone's allowed to be considered "missing" before "presumed dead" gets added to the description.
     
  17. Dale Sams

    Dale Sams Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    SO much pin-head dancing. I'll say it again: If two of your kids were fused into one being and started crowing about his rights...you wouldn't hesitate for one second to pull the plug and get your kids back.
     
  18. teya

    teya Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Bullshit.

    And since Kes made the tearful plea to Janeway to save her boyfriend, and it worked on Janeway...

    I can state categorically that, even though my boyfriend required a transplant to stay alive, it never even for a second crossed my mind to kill someone to get him a kidney.
     
  19. Dale Sams

    Dale Sams Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    You obviously have no kids. ..lol..though it did just occur to me if the one were much better behaved than the two "hmmmmm"

    And randomly killing some stranger that actually has a life to steal his kidney is about as far as you can get from defusing someone to get your children back.
     
  20. DonIago

    DonIago Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    How nice that you know me so well that you can tell me how I'd handle a situation that I don't even know how I'd handle.
     

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