"The Most Toys" Data would have killed but lied to Riker!

Discussion in 'The Next Generation' started by DataLoreSpock, Jan 15, 2012.

  1. 7thsealord

    7thsealord Captain Captain

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    Dream on.

    The word of someone who had absolutely zero compunction about killing or enslaving any sentient to get what he wanted. Noting also that, once Data was properly secured, he would not be in a position to monitor Fajo's activities or hold him to any promises.

    Yep, no problem there.

    At least until Fajo got bored and set his sights on some other new toy or amusement. That would happen, certainly.

    Do you REALLY think that once he had Data in his collection, Fajo would then never collect (read: steal) anything else, or refrain from killing, harming or enlaving anybody else if it suited him to do so? I don't.
     
  2. DataLoreSpock

    DataLoreSpock Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I agree with 7thsealord.
     
  3. Start Wreck

    Start Wreck Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Nobody could say with 100% certainty, and that in itself makes killing him unjustifiable.
     
  4. TerragonSix

    TerragonSix Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    On the contrary, he was putting up the lives of innocents (the people Fajo would've killed had Data not obeyed, OR, who's to say Fajo would've killed them anyway as a 'reminder' to Data) above Fajo's life. 'I cannot permit this to continue.'

    I suppose, guys like Hitler or Osama Bin Laden did not deserve to die, along your line of reasoning.
     
  5. Start Wreck

    Start Wreck Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    The bit before the "OR" (ie. had Data not obeyed) is irrelevant. I'm saying he should have obeyed in order to save as many lives as possible - innocents' and Fajo's.

    The bit after the "OR" is supposition. He may have killed nobody. In fact, he didn't. He was caught.

    I don't believe death is a justifiable form of punishment, no.
     
  6. DataLoreSpock

    DataLoreSpock Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    When it comes down to that, I quote Spock
    "The good of the many outweigh the needs of the few."
    It was either satisfy Fajo or let innocent people die.
     
  7. 7thsealord

    7thsealord Captain Captain

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    Punishment, no.

    But it is amazingly effective at stopping a murderer from hurting or killing anyone else. As far as Data knew at that point in time, he had no other options.
     
  8. 7thsealord

    7thsealord Captain Captain

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    Then I'll say it with 101% certainty. Fajo would not have kept his word.
     
  9. Start Wreck

    Start Wreck Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    That doesn't justify it either, unless it's done in a moment of panic for the purposes of defence / protection. Ie. if he was actively firing his weapon at people and needed to be stopped there and then, shooting him would be justifiable.

    In the situation presented here, however, Fajo isn't immediately endangering anybody unless Data disobeys him.

    He had the option of surrender. This could result in more people dying or in no people dying. Pulling the trigger results in the definite death of one person.

    Data couldn't be 100% sure that Fajo would kill again. It's impossible, even for an android with a brain capable of weighing up millions of possible scenarios in a split second, to know for sure what would happen.

    So how sure do you have to be? Ninety-nine percent? Seventy-five percent?


    Ignoring the fact that that makes no sense, you're already wrong, because he was caught before he could do any more harm. How can you be totally sure that something will happen when it already definitely didn't?
     
  10. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Except for Data who had his freedom taken from him. A trinket to be bought and sold at the whim of others...

    Data fired and was justified in doing so.
     
  11. Start Wreck

    Start Wreck Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Data should value life above his own freedom.
     
  12. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    So Data should put a scumbag (btw, Saul Rubinek does a fantastic job as Fajo) above himself? He should allow Fajo to continue stealing and abducting sentient beings? He should allow Fajo to continue abusing other sentient beings as he desires?

    That is a pretty warped morality my friend...
     
  13. Start Wreck

    Start Wreck Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    To avoid taking a life, yes.

    Theft and abduction are lesser crimes than killing, so yes, he should have allowed himself to be abducted rather than kill.

    It's in keeping with how Data's morality is portrayed in the show. He values life, and will only kill in defence.


    People are arguing that Fajo would definitely kill again even if Data obeyed him, or that there is at least a "sure enough" chance that he would. Is there evidence of this in the episode? Does it state how many times he has killed before? I can't recall the exact dialogue.
     
  14. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Defense is a pretty big net. We know that Fajo disfigured Varria.

    This is from The Most Toys...

    If he's killed once with no remorse. What makes you think he hasn't killed before or won't kill again to get his way?
     
  15. Start Wreck

    Start Wreck Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Never mind, here's a transcript:
    http://www.chakoteya.net/NextGen/170.htm

    I don't see anything there that suggests Fajo has even killed before. He owns dangerous weapons and almost certainly controls his crew with threats, but based on his reaction to Varria's death, I get the impression he felt a little bad about it (nervously telling Data it was his fault). I don't see a convincing argument that Fajo would kill again should Data surrender to him.

    The intention of the writer seems to be that Data fires due to an emotional response to Varria's death:
    FAJO: Or what? You'll fire? Empty threat and we both know it. Why don't you accept your fate? You will return to your chair and you will sit there. You will entertain me and you will entertain my guests. And if you do not, I will simply kill somebody else. Him, perhaps. It doesn't matter. Their blood will be on your hands too, just like poor Varria's. Your only alternative, Data, is to fire. Murder me. That's all you have to do. Go ahead. Fire. If only you could feel rage over Varria's death. If only you could feel the need for revenge, then maybe you could fire. But you're just an android. You can't feel anything, can you? It's just another interesting intellectual puzzle for you. Another of life's curiosities.
    DATA: I cannot permit this to continue.

    Rage, revenge. Not because there's logically no choice. If there was logically no choice, he wouldn't have needed to lie about it.

    Data fired because he was angry. That, to me, is at least quite interesting...
     
  16. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Fajo was taunting Data.

    I don't think so. I think Data merely calculated the odds of his escape if he didn't take the opportunity in front of him. He knew that once the crew learned of what happened to Varria, that there'd be little chance of escape after that. And I don't think he would've fired if he didn't believe that killing Fajo was the only way out.

    Was he "angry" at Fajo? Yes. Did the "anger" drive his actions? I don't think so.
     
  17. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Data wasn't angry, he was making a rational decision that Fajo had to be stopped, you can see him processing that decision before he raises the gun.

    he says "I cannot permit this to continue" in the same flat voice in which he'd give a routine report.
     
  18. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The problem, IMHO, is not simply that Data fired. It makes sense that he did. The problem was the specific weapon he used.

    Data knew what kind of pain the Varon-T disruptor causes. By choosing to fire, he chose to subject Fajo to that kind of pain. Data must have wanted Fajo to suffer as Varria (and others) did. Otherwise, Data would have tried to find some other way. I admit, I forgot about Fajo's force field, but Data would have found a way around that.
     
  19. Start Wreck

    Start Wreck Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    We'll have to agree to disagree, then. Given the circumstances presented in the episode, I see no evidence that Fajo would have killed again had Data surrendered.
    Fajo's dialogue being antagonistic (taunting) is precisely the point; if not, why was it written like that?

    Think about it: if you're trying to write an interesting drama, you don't make the decision an easy one. If Data's actions are logically justifiable, then the resolution is boring. "He did what he had to do to save lives" is dramatically dull, whereas "he acted beyond his programming, emotionally" is the stuff of meaty character development. Or it would be if anything ever came of it. They left the ending "ambiguous" as a get-out clause, I suppose.
     
  20. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Fajo is obviously untrustworthy and a liar. I see absolutely no reason to take anything he says at face value. :shrug: