Maybe Picard's attitude was right

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by Nyotarules, Sep 14, 2018 at 12:13 PM.

  1. Nyotarules

    Nyotarules Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Ok let us pretend the Star Trek 24th century past is our present, in light of how right-wing, xenophobic, tribal, politically extreme society is becoming especially in the West, was Picard and the Enterprise crew right to have a disdainful attitude of how humans are in our time?
    I would say yes, since in the Star Trek universe the generation that starts World War 3 are already the young adults of our time.
     
  2. WraithDukat

    WraithDukat Captain Premium Member

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    He was a douche to the 20th century humans because they reminded him of a part of himself he pretends isn't there.
     
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  3. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    We never quite learn which period of "our times" Picard so passionately loathes.

    Is it the 20th century and its Eugenics Wars, complete with concentration camps and gas chambers and mass bombings? All of the Triumph of the West? Everything the Han ever managed to do to themselves in the past two millennia? The poor treatment of Shakespeare in Elizabethian England only?

    Picard has expressed specific disdain for profiteering (especially in "Starship Mine") and some general disdain for racism, but neither would seem to be on any particular upswing as of this specific date, not from the vantage point of Picard's three-centuries-distanced ivory tower. That's just how humanity has always been.

    I find some delight in Picard never really implying that the 20th century barbarians destroyed Earth's ecosystem, say. At least in that one universe, the damage was reversible, or not that significant.

    On the other hand, we did have a full-blown nuclear war, although apparently not between the classic superpowers (as ruled out in "Omega Glory"). Little ill seems to have come from that, either. But Picard would feel rightly superior if human-on-human armed conflict petered down after that. It's just another of the precision accusations he never quite manages to make.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
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  4. TribbleFeeder

    TribbleFeeder The Real Kim Cardassian Premium Member

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    He probably felt the same way we feel about the time of slave trade. How could we have been so ignorant and not known what we were doing?

    There were periods in history where the masses were being ignorant to the damage they caused to society.

    I don’t blame him for thinking so lowly of us, there’s a lot going on in our world now that is absolutely absurd. Especially, how extravagantly some of us live while there are people dying of starvation, a problem that seems to have been nearly solved by the 24th century. I understand his bitterness for sure.
     
  5. WraithDukat

    WraithDukat Captain Premium Member

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    I can't remember which episode it was but Crusher said something along those lines.

    Back to Picard, he's the same as us. At the core he's the same, if he was brought up in our society he would think/act like us. The people he despises would be like him if they were brought up in the same world he was.

    In-fact a clone of him was willing to kill a planets entire population for no real reason at all except to satisfy his personal demons.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2018 at 12:53 PM
  6. grendelsbayne

    grendelsbayne Commodore Commodore

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    I don't think the attitude people see here is entirely unjustified, but I also don't think it's really a reasonable take-away from the episode (if we're talking specifically about 'The Neutral Zone', which seems to be the case).

    Picard never really shows any serious prejudice towards the 20th century humans at all, he simply doesn't have the time to deal with them in light of everything happening witht he Romulans, and he is very understandably irritated by the one guy who continually refuses to wait for a reasonable moment to talk. Yeah, he talks a bit about what's different in his time period versus theirs and he clearly thinks his period is better (as most people would), but none of it is preachy. He's just trying to explain that they're not in their time period anymore and they need to stop making assumptions and let the Enterprise crew do what needs to be done so that everyone gets home alive. The only thing he says in the whole episode that's at all out of line is when he demands to know why Data rescued them in the first place - but that line comes across more as a weird misunderstanding/commentary on cryonic stasis than anything related to what time period they're from, and Picard himself even admits Data did the right thing, anyway. He's simply, once again, preoccupied with the Romulans.

    Now, Riker, on the other hand.... "Well, from what I've seen of our guests, there's not much to redeem them. It makes one wonder how our species survived the twenty-first century." Riker is a douche. Especially since the musician guy was very friendly and not all that different from Riker himself and the woman just a normal person understandably distraught from an objectively terrible situation she had no control over. Meaning Riker was condemning all of them and their entire time period on the basis of that one guy who was really nothing more than mildly annoying and pushy.
     
  7. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I gather it's not directly related to the trio there, but just the underlying assumptions showing through. These people represent the slave traders of old, or the people who enslaved animals for food, or whatever pushes Riker's buttons.

    Picard seldom lets such things show, is all. His utter disgust at the revelation of the true motivations of the "terrorists" in "Starship Mine" is one of those occasions. The cultural canon might still be the same: there's no point in speculating that a German who lived in the 1930s-40s might not have been a Nazi, or, for a milder example, that a Yankee from the 1870s might not have been a carpetbagger of the worst sort, and you should always suspect the worst and only then, if events really warrant, choose to exercise the benefit of doubt. It's the more natural way to do it, the farther in the history the disdainful way of life is. After all, the crime is the more alien then as well.

    Of course, Picard is also the man with perspective, capable of seeing that each era has its own woes. Even if he cannot see the wrongs of his own time, he won't be deluding himself into thinking there are none. This, though, is no reason not to condemn those wrongs that mankind has already left behind.

    ...Now, if we just could find such a decidedly left-behind wrong in the reality of our own world...

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  8. Phil123

    Phil123 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Picard should maybe have shown the individuals some more patience, but he is totally right about us Pasties. Look at us, the way we treat the planet and each other. We're a disgrace on the whole.
     
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  9. WraithDukat

    WraithDukat Captain Premium Member

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    Are you Cheese & Onion or Corned Beef?
     
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  10. Armus

    Armus Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Personally I do not feel humanity is evolving, although I'm very happy to have been born in the west on this side of history. I appreciate TNG as a fantasy utopia that we'd all like to inhabit, so I don't mind all those "we've grown out our infancy" statements that Picard made in the early seasons because somehow Earth defeated hunger, materialism, and greed by the 24th century.
     
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  11. The Old Mixer

    The Old Mixer Disavowed by the Secretary Moderator

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    I never got all the fan sympathy for the self-important stockbroker. That was a type that needed knocked down a peg or three back in the late '80s, and I had no problem with TNG going there.
     
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  12. TribbleFeeder

    TribbleFeeder The Real Kim Cardassian Premium Member

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    He infuriated me. I can’t believe people sympathized with him.

    :brickwall:
     
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  13. WraithDukat

    WraithDukat Captain Premium Member

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    I loved his "it's not about money it's about power" talk with Picard.
     
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  14. Armus

    Armus Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    He compared the Enterprise to a cruise ship!
     
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  15. TribbleFeeder

    TribbleFeeder The Real Kim Cardassian Premium Member

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    And he knew it was a military vessel! He even said that Picard had a “military career” so he was literally just saying that to be a dick!! Omg I hated that guy.
     
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  16. Lord Garth

    Lord Garth Commodore Commodore

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    I hate that guy. That was TNG's ultimate commentary on the times. It was handled a lot better than when they introduced the Ferengi earlier in the season.

    This. 100 times this. Prior to a few years ago, I might not have agreed. Today, I do. The fact that we're not already in WWIII is a miracle.
     
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  17. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Then he ends up knocking Picard and Co. down a peg, because he has a better read on the Romulan situation than they did. :eek:
     
  18. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    No. Because when going got tough, humanity was still the same insecure children they have always been. See places like Turkana IV.
     
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  19. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The stock broker’s line, “It’s not about money, it’s about my ability to control your life”, makes him tough to sympathize with. For most real people like him it is actually just about the money and the freedom and privileges it brings.

    I think Picard is right to decry the problems of the time but wrong to treat people of the time as avatars for those problems. Picard is tolerant of alien cultures who ritually murder each other but can’t be empathetic to a greedy guy and a lazy hedonist?
     
  20. Tenacity

    Tenacity Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Please.
    Which wouldn't have been a issue if Riker had been completely honest with the group and had actually done his best to answer their question. Simply informing them that Picard was too busy to speak to them might have helped too.

    Compare Troi's treatment of Samual Clemmons with Riker's treatment (and behavior) and it's easy to see the correct approach.
    Only if looking at the world from the perspective of the socialist ultra-progressive wacko sub-culture.
    Or they represent the society the fought and in some cases died, to suppress and destroy slavery.
    Can't remember the exact quote but what followed, Picard: the power to do what, Ralph: to control your own life.

    This and other statements is why people like and support Ralph, because he speaks with wisdom.
    He said the passager ship was better run, not that the design of the ships were the same.