Did we ever see anyone vote in the Federation?

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Drago-Kazov, Oct 5, 2012.

  1. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

    That would be in matters of Federation law. Likely someone like Simon Tarses would be protected under Federation law since he's not on his home world.

    Unless we believe every Federation citizen has the right to ceremonial combat to the death to possess a woman, each planet likely has its own laws that applies to its citizens. A Vulan woman may have certain rights as a Federation citizen when acting as a Federation citizen, but she would still be bound by the laws of Vulcan when living and working there. Even if it conflicts with Federation law.

    Part of the issue is that the Federation went from a loose alliance of worlds in TOS to simply mimicking the US in TNG and other 24th century shows.
  2. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

    Mar 2, 2002
    Montgomery County, State of Maryland
    You did not specify which section of my post you are replying to, but I'm assuming you're referring to the section about the Guarantees of the Federation Constitution. "The Drumhead" makes it very clear that those Guarantees are absolute throughout the entire Federation -- they're not conditional. You get them for being in the Federation, and being from Vulcan rather than Mars doesn't void them.

    Between the kal-if-fee and the ushaan, I would infer that Federation law allows for consensual homicide -- since it would appear that both the Vulcan and the Andorian ritual combat can only occur if both sides agree to participate in advance.

    As far as "possessing" a female -- I'm sure that even if Vulcan tradition keeps such language, actual Vulcan law and Federation law ensure de facto and de jure equality for women in spite of ceremonial language. Women in the United States may opt to promise to "love, honor, and obey" their husbands when they get married, but both state and federal law make it clear that they are equal citizens before the law who have no obligation to relinquish their agency to their husbands.

    There are certainly some areas of law where authority is reserved for the Members; that's why it's called a the United Federation of Planets rather than the United Unitary State of Planets.

    But episodes like "The Drumhead," "The Perfect Mate," "Accession," "Author, Author," "Force of Nature," etc., make it very clear that when there's a contradiction with UFP law, UFP law wins.

    Even in TOS, it was never as loose as some like to argue. Here is my analysis of the evolution of how the Federation has been portrayed over the years.
  3. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

    If consensual homicide exists, why was there a need to place a reprimand on Worf's record for executing Duras?

    At the end of the day, an interstellar state could not exist like a current day United States. We're talking about species that have evolved in far different conditions and will have far different values. In TOS, I don't think it was ever intended for the Federation to be a latter-day U.S.

    As far as Amok Time goes... T'Pau even says that the battle is for the possession of the woman T'Pring. And the episode indicates that she doesn't really have a way out legally if Spock wins. Then you add in Ardana from The Cloud Minders, who were Federation members and essentially treated a mentally-challenged subclass as slaves.

    I really think the Federation was suppose to be a loose alliance, probably primarily a defensive alliance not a collection morally like-minded folks.
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2012
  4. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

    Jul 22, 2004
    Arizona, USA
    Well, with the Duras thing, the Klingons aren't Federation members so that might change things. Plus, I thought he attacked Duras?
    As for the rest of the conversation, I have a feeling there is probably stuff in The Federation Charter that recognizes traditions of the member worlds, even if they do contradict other parts of the Charter.
    I thought the whole thing with Ardana was that the Federation did not know about the Troglytes?
  5. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

    How could you hide your primary source of labor while applying for membership?

    As far as Worf and Duras goes, Worf claimed the 'Right of Vengence'. Later in the episode, Picard confirms that the Klingons have no issue with the event.
  6. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

    Mar 2, 2002
    Montgomery County, State of Maryland
    Presumably because even though consensual homicide exists on Federation Members, it's something that can only occur in specific, regulated circumstances. Or perhaps because it is forbidden under the Starfleet Uniform Code of Military Justice. Or perhaps simply because a Starfleet officer engaging in a consensual homicide duel with a foreign political leader is considered a violation of the Prime Directive or something close to a Prime Directive.

    Meta-textually, I'd say that the Federation's tolerance of the kal-if-fee vs. Starfleet's intolerance of Klingon duels constitutes an inconsistency one way or the other.

    Of course not. An interstellar federation would by necessity have to delegate much more autonomy to its constituent polities. But that does not mean that the Federation is not a federation, and it doesn't mean that the Federation doesn't guarantee certain rights and maintain certain requirements for its Members.

    Again, ceremonial language doesn't actually tell us that T'Pring will be considered her husband's chattel, because ceremonial language can be retained for purposes of tradition even wen they are inaccurate. We'd have to see actual Vulcan marriages for such info. The closest we've ever come would be the glimpses we've caught of Tuvok's marriage to T'Pel on VOY -- T'Pel certainly never seems subjugated to Tuvok, and she's definitely not in the TTN novels.

    It is true that Vulcan arranged marriages would seem to contradict the Federation's claim to be based on "freedom and self-determination" ("The Best of Both Worlds"), though this particular imposition seems to fall on male and female Vulcans equally. I also question how much of T'Pring's plot was based on the need to appease tradition rather than legality.

    And, of course, we don't know if Vulcan arranged marriage remain in place in the 24th Century just because they were there in the 23rd.

    Yes -- and where the rest of the Federation, as exemplified by the Enterprise crew, hadn't realized the working class was oppressed and reacted negatively to such a revelation, and invoked Federation negotiators to come in and start changing Ardanian society. I think it's safe to say that the Federation learned from the Ardanian debacle there; they're certainly much more careful and picky about admitting Members by the 24th Century.

    At first, to a point. But the polities the Federation was modeled upon changed over time.
  7. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Sci... You can try to bend over backwards to explain Vulcan marriage but its all right there in the episode...

    From the episode:

    But by the laws of our people, I could only divorce you by the kal-if-fee. There was also Stonn, who wanted very much to be my consort, and I wanted him. If your Captain were victor, he would not want me, and so I would have Stonn. If you were victor you would free me because I had dared to challenge, and again I would have Stonn. But if you did not free me, it would be the same. For you would be gone, and I would have your name and your property, and Stonn would still be there.

    And doesn't Vorik bring up Vulcan mating rituals in the episode "Blood Fever"?

    But at the end of the day, we will simply have to agree to disagree. :techman:

    EDIT: They should do a Cheaters episode where Spock is following T'Pring! :lol:
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2012