True or False: Dear Dr. is most morally bankrupt trek episode evar

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by ElimGarak, May 29, 2012.

  1. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    Of course there are always exceptions but the general pattern of cultural development is that you are ready to face the possibility of alien life when the chance to get out there becomes a material reality. We are talking about a guideline for Starfleet captains when they first become aware of the existence of a new species and have no data on them at all. Suppose Starfleet does not detect antimatter, decides to conduct duck-blind missions and then realize that these guys are ready to welcome alien visitors. Then you obviously initiate first contact.

    In the case of first contact you have to err on the side of caution.
     
  2. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^^No. The Cytherians had the capacity for FTL travel, they just "reversed" the concept.
     
  3. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    The Cold War could have easily ended in the extinction of humankind. So make up your mind, is preventing extinction only OK in the case of natural catastrophes and not in the case of cultural ones or what and why the distinction between cultural and natural and what about the cases where you cannot make a distinction between them?
    I am just looking for some consistency. On the one hand people are saying that human ethics should be universally applied in the galaxy but then they do not like the word dogma and want the Prime Directive to be a very lax rule. Seems like Swiss Cheese not me and not like a thought-out position.
     
  4. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    Warp drive doesn't carry with it inherent moral implications from it's use.
     
  5. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I made up my mind about five pages ago...

     
  6. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    Let's stop dancing around the issue: the PD is nothing but the ultimate expression of the concept that there is no such thing as good/evil, right/wrong, etc, and that all is perspective, and that no one should exercise any sort of moral discernment.

    Which is a notion that is total and complete BS. At best it's an excuse for moral cowardice, and at worst it's collaborating with evil.

    If I were Central American and were so-inclined as to attempt to revive the Aztec human sacrifice religion of Mezo-America, would you just shrug and say "your culture, your rules...I have no right to judge you or interfere..."?

    I seriously doubt it. No person with a functioning conscience would defend permitting that to happen.

    In Trek terms, witness the case of Dr Timicin (TNG) and the Eminians/Vendikans (TOS). In both cases their societies had developed socially dysfunctional, if not outright diseased cultures that were committing great acts of evil on the populace. Kirk (rightly) said basically "Oh no you don't!" and did something. Picard, Troi, et al just shrugged and said "it's your culture"and let him go kill himself not because he was facing a horrid, lingering death in great pain, or even because he was some sort of burden, but only because his sick culture decreed that everyone must die at 60.
     
  7. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    So the answer is to sign the death warrant on a species?

    BS!

    The answer is to cure the plague, THEN sit down and fix the social issues between the two races.
     
  8. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Actually, I support both of these cultures to execute their respective moral codes internally.

    The problem becomes if it spills outside their populace and ensnares innocent people, like we see in A Taste of Armageddon. You can't enforce your moral code on other cultures.
     
  9. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The answer is to cure the plague. Internal dynamics of a culture is not for Starfleet to judge.
     
  10. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    Doctors are not soldiers. Their duty is to "do no harm" and to practice their profession dispassionately and without favoritism or prejudice. Doctors cure sick people (if such be within their power) regardless of race, politics, moral standing, etc, at least the ethical ones do.
     
  11. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    What can be more decent in ANY era than the principle of "do no harm"?
     
  12. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    And should have been sentenced to whatever the maximum penalty for murder in that universe is.'

    The doctor did the right thing, saving a life. It was the twisted, sick beliefs of the parents that killed the child.
     
  13. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    So it's perfectly all right to allow other cultures to practice human sacrifice because "that's their culture", just so long as it's their own people that they are killing?

    Doesn't fly. Not for one minute.
     
  14. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Right, much better that humanity should go through space forcing others to adhere to our belief systems.

    And if an alien race comes to Earth and wants to impose their beliefs upon us?
     
  15. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    So you're saying that starship captains should go through the universe enforcing truth, justice and the American way? Or is that the Chinese way? Or the Islamic way? Or the Vulcan way? Or the Andorian way? Or the Tellarite way? Or the Betazoid way? Or the Trill way?

    Are you going to stay years or decades to ensure that they meet your moral code? Are you going to set up a military government and send in troops to enforce your morality on an alien race? Would you be supportive of a superior race technologically coming in and enforcing their morals on humanity? Do you equate technological progress to moral superiority?

    I don't think for a minute that I'm wise enough to enforce my own moral code on an alien race. It discounts thousands of years of development on their part, because of how I feel today. I'm a much different person than I was twenty years ago and will be a much different person twenty years from now.

    Your mileage may vary...
     
  16. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    About external extinction events, I think it is for Starfleet to destroy objects that are on a collision course with a Minshara class planet with sentient life on it.
    Setting up something like the verteron array on Mars to constantly protect an alien culture would probably go too far because the folks would think that it is totally natural than no asteroids hit their planet and not come up with a method to deflect them on their own as it is already done for them.
     
  17. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    in a figment of a mediocre mind's imagination

    Since the top part was directed at me...


    1. You seem to be assuming that FTL travel is automatically connected to a desire for contact with other races. That's a big assumption. Suppose it was developed by a race that had overcrowded their planet, as a way of settling on other uninhabited worlds far away? They might not be looking for contact at all, merely settlement. Others may do it to escape repression or because of a political split.(Like the Romulans fleeing Vulcan) On the other hand, a species WITHOUT FTL may be very interested in alien contact(like many on Earth are right now)

    That's why it's arbitrary.


    2. As for the nanny thing, it's a strawman. I'm not proposing that the UFP go out and search for problems to take care of. In "Dear Doctor," this was a situation they stumbled upon. And I don't consider it "nannyism" to help those in need, I consider it the right thing to do.(resources and capabilities permitting)
     
  18. Sindatur

    Sindatur The Grey Owl Wizard Premium Member

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    Why do you keep bringing up Starfleet, and what Picard would do, and the Prime Directive, none of these things exist, and Phlox is not a member of Archer's Organization that gives him his orders. He is a Cultural Exchange participant, who Archer invited along for the ride requesting he serve as the ship's Doctor, no different than T'Pol's situation as an Observer
     
  19. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    You are still evading the question I asked so strawman yourself.

    You have problems with the Feds standing by as civilizations die. If they are aware of the problem of a civilization like ours should they prevent someone like us from annihilating ourselves via nuclear weapons, climate change or whatever or not?
     
  20. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    No they shouldn't interfere. The scenarios above are self-inflicted.