Stigma and Fusion - ethics 101

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by Guest, Feb 26, 2003.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I don't tape or download these shows, but I seem to recall in "Fusion" that we are not shown how the attack was reported by T'Pol to Archer or others of the crew. She herself appears to downplay the incident to a certain extent. (Just as she refuses to discuss it in "Stigma".) At the time I could not help but assume that she had not revealed all the details of her encounter, that she herself may have felt as guilty about initially consenting to the contact, as she appearently was guilty about having been "moved" on some emmotional level by human music.

    "Fusion" strongly implies that she is not familiar with the mind meld at the time she agrees to one (she certainly doesn't understand what one might involve and has never "done it"). She finds it unpleasant and is not allowed to back away. Well, heck, guys, sure sounds forcing a virgin to go through with something she didn't understand and found out to be painful and unpleasant for her (or him).

    Under the circumstances would it be impossible to believe that she felt guilty as well as victimized? Here I was fooling around with these renegades, and look what I got... Would no one in this circumstance have mixed feelings? Isn't this why some rapes go unreported in the real world? Why men (or women) don't always report assaults (sexual or otherwise)? Or won't press charges?

    If this is what the writers are getting at, I don't think T'Pol's actions are so hard to understand at all. And if Archer was faced with an assualt he knew about, but had no way of bringing to a prosecution (a victim unwilling to testify because she felt guilty about the initial consent), yeah, he might have to be satisfied with throwing the guy off his ship (although I would have gotten a sucurity team to help me beat the crap out of him first).

    I mention "if this is what the writers are getting at". I'm not convinced that B&B figured out what they wanted to do in "Stigma" when "Fusion" was written. Look at how much I (and we) read into these eps to make them make sense to us. These eps are overwritten to allow Archer to make flowery "beat you over the head" speaches, and underwritten or superficially written when it comes to character motivation.
     
  2. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Hi all!

    Please do not kill me for saying this but...What happened to T-pol was unfortunate but can not be considered rape. She said yes and then changed her mind. That argument about her not knowing really doesn't make any sense especially if the whole mindmeld issue was really "Stigmatized".

    Yes people talk about stigmatized issues behind closed doors in confidence. She should have know something even if it was erroneous (If you meld you'll get hair on your hand! No my granni said it was evil, what ever!) Aside from the fact that she secluded herself with someone who she obviously had serious misgivings about already.

    As far as her wanting to "protect" this segment of the population it sounded more to me she wanted to hide the fact that she had caught it such a foolish way. The whole situation just smack of immaturity and not wanting to take responsibility for your actions.

    You may start hurling your rotten tomatoes now as I have put on my rain coat and galoshes!

    ABZ
     
  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

    ... good points. :) But we have to keep in mind that we are talking about a character who is supposedly a Vulcan officer of about 60 some years of age. Why do you apply the actions of a teenager to T'Pol? She feels guilty? Grow up! Call the cops! Your description of her plight is bang on and yes, would be an interesting character conflict. But the show brushes this off as you say. These feelings T'Pol 'might' be having are swallowed up with the rest of the 'plot'.

    So we are left with this mess. Way ta go B&B. :rolleyes:
     
  4. Raz

    Raz Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Jul 13, 2001
    Uh. Let me get this right. She says "yes", then partway through changes her mind and says "no". Bad Vulcan does it anyway... but it's not 'rape'?

    I wouldn't want to try and argue that sucker in court :(
     
  5. Guest

    Guest Guest

    ^ you would be wise. What's that line from Ani DeFranko?
     
  6. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Maybe "Vulcan date rape"?! Huh?? In any case she should have know more about what she was getting into. As mentioned she isn't a teenager and one would hope that a person in her 60's?? and having served in the military would be a little more sophiticated than that

    ABZ
     
  7. Raz

    Raz Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'm mostly bothered by how on one hand, she's never heard of a mind meld and on the other, melders are stigmatized.

    WTF?

    She might have faked not knowing because she knew of the stigmatism, but if so, why did she even agree to the mind meld?

    It doesn't make any sense. :confused:
     
  8. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Good point. I sincerely doubt she was playing dumb;

    "I don't know nothin' bout no mindmeld sailor. why don't you show me! wink wink" shutter, gasp, cringe!

    Sorry I could help it.

    ABZ
     
  9. Gorn 2001

    Gorn 2001 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Why does nobody seem to understand that she was standing up for a principle! :mad: How very Vulcan!

    She was standing up for the rights of any afflicted Vulcan to be treated equally regardless of what condition they may have or how they contracted it. The point was that the disease should be studied and treated like any other one that may afflict Vulcans.
     
  10. reno floyd

    reno floyd Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Exactly.
     
  11. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Exactly what? A case of this nature in court could go any which way because of a million different reasons. The truth is that everything comes into play in a such a delicate matter. It isn't just Black or White.

    If he was such a piece of trash why was she alone with him? Did he stalk her? Was there already a pattern of abuse established? etc. Yes proving a case like this in court in reality would be a nightmare. As you can see you and I could wind up a jury box together and our opinions are worlds apart.

    ABZ
     
  12. reno floyd

    reno floyd Vice Admiral Admiral

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    They'll never keep me down.
    No means no. Period.
     
  13. Guest

    Guest Guest

    NO means no. But what about yes then no? Some responsibility for our actions please. What about accountability??

    ABZ
     
  14. Nephandus

    Nephandus Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Heh, to be on the safe side, I've always taken it that way. But then, I've been immediately told, on several occasions, by several women, that they didn't really mean 'no' when they said it. And these weren't complete dumbies either.

    In fact, as a teen, I think I even said it a few times before forgetting about my own advice and doing it anyway.

    In fact, they were simply saying aloud their thoughts that what we were doing was wrong. They weren't saying that they didn't want to do it, and weren't attempting to actually stop the scenario (though I immediately stopped it).

    Or, they were rationalizing that they were being 'swept away,' 'powerless to resist' - a common fantasy among men and women.

    No means no? For your own legal protection, it's an absolute. But as far as defining what people actually want, it's not so accurate.
     
  15. reno floyd

    reno floyd Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^^ Quite right :)

    No means, no. Nuff said ;)
     
  16. Guest

    Guest Guest

    ... it's called being coy Nephandus. Yeah... and some chicks play it up. Whatever... some women. But let's not say this is T'Pols situation... obviously. :)
     
  17. Lady Conqueror

    Lady Conqueror Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Hey Gorn - I pointed that out :)

    And just rewatched "Fusion". Now if only my copy of "Stigma" would show up so I could analyse that fully.

    But first I just wanted to point something out to ABZ18 (welcome to the forum by the way):

    I don't know that I'd characterise it as abuse exactly but he was manipulating her from the get-go. Worming his way into her psyche until she agreed to give it a go.

    Regardless of whether she agreed to it willingly or not at first it was pretty clear that her subsequent "No" meant "No" from her actions and the way she said it. Tolaris should have stopped immediately and the fact that he didn't makes him in the wrong and T'Pol a victim.

    But I do think - from rewatching the ep - that T'Pol was left with a "it's partly my fault" mentality.

    And in any case she must have told Archer to just get Tolaris off the ship. This can be seen in the final scene when Archer visits her in her quarters:

    Archer: Are you feeling better?
    T'Pol: Have they left? (getting away from Tolaris is obviously her primary motivation at this point indicating that that was most likely all she asked Archer to do about it)
    Archer: About twenty minutes ago.
    T'Pol: Then, yes, I feel better.

    Now the bit of "Fusion" that may put a damper on my earlier theory (But I really need to see "Stigma" to make a full judgement - I haven't given up reconciling things yet :) ):

    In the scene between Archer & Tolaris:

    Archer does mention that T'Pol told him about the mind-meld - it's not clear exactly how much she said about it so there could be some wiggle room in there.

    Perhaps he didn't jump to the rape analogy because it's a mind thing and he just equates rape with sexual acts at this stage (lots of people do - though rape can be accounted for any sort of personal violation really).

    And at this stage I'd also like to point out to voodoowoman who said

    that she was in sickbay and Phlox told Archer that she had suffered neurological trauma - which came this close to being permanent damage. Sounds like physical harm to me.

    Anyway my mind just shut down and I lost the point I was trying to make - hmm, time for more coffee I think. Hopefully clarity will return and I can make my point later.

    Basically I really need to see "Stigma" though. Hopefully not too much longer to wait.
     
  18. Guest

    Guest Guest

    ... wow! Beautiful post Lady Conqueror!!! I love this thread because you're in it you know. ;)
     
  19. Lady Conqueror

    Lady Conqueror Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    :lol: You did read that 2nd last sentence where I completely lost the point (or the plot - either works ;) ) right?.

    I did remember something I wanted to say though. The fact that this happened to T'Pol is part of why we have to spend so much time interpreting what she says/does. The fact that she's a Vulcan and thus into suppressing her emotions means that she can't really break down and start spouting off her feelings on the matter (or any matter). So we have less to work with in terms of gauging her reactions to things.

    It's a fine line the writers (and Jolene herself) have to walk and they don't always pull it off exactly right. I'm not saying this as a critism of the writers (or again, Jolene) though - I imagine it's a very hard thing to write. Nimoy obviously set the standard way back in TOS and he was phenomenal - Jolene's improving all the time but she's not up to his level (and maybe never will be), plus the writers in TOS always had the half-human excuse if they needed it. TNG & DS9 barely touched the Vulcans so it was less of a problem. Then came Voyager which again had a central Vulcan character. I think Tuvok (and Tim Russ) probably got the short-shrift a bit in Voyager because the writers there didn't want to go down that line to often (and notice a lot of the time Tuvok's main eps were either straight man to Paris/Neelix or involved some sort of mind-altering excuse for him to be able to show emotions - and on a side note probably my two favourite Tuvok episodes were "Innocence" and "Gravity" because while they may not have been all that great plot-wise, Tuvok got to be a proper Vulcan all the way through and he managed it beautifully).

    Anyway my point being that in Enterprise they have decided that T'Pol will be a Major character so they have to address this line a lot more often.
     
  20. Guest

    Guest Guest

    ... you know, I'm surprised more women haven't posted here and antied up, as it were. Hey girls! Over here!!! :D