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Jason R.
Tue, Sep 14, 2021, 11:16am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DS9 S1: In the Hands of the Prophets

"It sounds a little too mono-causal and deterministic for my taste and I could point out that the USA, which was the first country to separate state and church, is still the most religious in the western hemisphere."

First of all I didn't say "separation of church and state" was the key factor, although I am sure it plays part. My thesis is that the rise of secular humanism fuelled by science / technology is what is killing religion.

Second, like every first world country, the USA's level of religiosity has nosedived in the 21st century continuing and accelerating an already rapid decline from the 20th century. It's hard for me to post links on my phone (apologies) but a casual glance at stats on Wikipedia confirms that almost all the mainline churches in the USA (including evangelical groups) are closing churches left and right. You would have to be living under a rock to claim that church attendance isn't down precipitously since, say, the 50s.

And by the way, wouldn't South America, Mexico and the Carribbean count as part of the Western hemisphere? If so, I want you to explain how countries like Jamaica, Mexico or Brazil are less "religious" than the USA. That is impossible to believe. Even a casual glance at church attendance stats confirms that can't be true. So I don't accept at all your claim that the USA is the "most religious" in the western hemisphere without major evidence.
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Jason R.
Tue, Sep 14, 2021, 7:09am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DS9 S1: In the Hands of the Prophets

"No, I don't. The prophets exist. "

At this point in the series, the wormhole aliens exist. Believing they are "prophets" I.e. Gods is not something you would accept if you were a Federation citizen any more than you accept that the groundhog in your backyard has a "spirit" or your neighbour's cat is a witch's familiar. Yes groundhogs and cats exist - but that is hardly the point.

I think part of the problem here is that I am looking at this episode in its allegorical context, in other words, what the episode is trying to convey to us the viewers. Of course Peter is correct that the big joke is that Winn ends up being 100% vindicated by the end of the series because the wormhole aliens are literally "Prophets" in a Celestial Temple and all of Winn's hocus pocus is factually correct!

But in my defence, even the writers didn't know all that at this point in the series.

"I understand what you are saying. You cannot compromise with fanatics."

All people become fanatical when they perceive a threat to their way of life.

Secularism is a mortal threat to religion. That much has been obvious even in my lifetime. I was an atheist by the time I was 10 but I distinctly remember feeling like this was still a relatively uncommon thing back then in the early 90s. I remember when "cancel culture" was pearl clutching evangelicals getting upset about violence in video games or pornography.

They were already impotent politically and culturally by that point of course (as the last 30 years has proven in spades) but they were still a force! (albeit a spent one) Now they can't seem to muster the impotent outrage they got back then.

I am shocked at how rapidly religion has been hollowed out in the past 30 years. The more secular the institutions and societies the more rapidly it has occurred. By the time my kids are my age I think most religions in the first world will be little more than rumps and the developing world will be well on the path.

The only reason the religious didn't fight harder against this is because back then they didn't understand the threat secularism posed. Perhaps they accepted the liberal promise that religion could co-exist with secular humanism and science (I don't think it can).

The Taliban and other groups like them seem to know the score. Them I don't have trouble understanding. They are also behaving logically within their framework. They are merely doing what any religious person from 500 years ago would have done if someone time travelled to them with a copy of the New York Times from 2021. They are doing what you would do if you discovered that Germany in 2100 would return to Naziism and usher in a 1,000 year reich. You'd be a fanatic too if you saw the writing was on the wall for your way of life.
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Jason R.
Mon, Sep 13, 2021, 7:18pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DS9 S1: In the Hands of the Prophets

"I really see no problem with what Keiko says."

Of course you don't, because you see the Bajoran faith as made up superstitious nonsense (or you would if it was a real religion) - as does Keiko, as would I if I were living in that reality.

But she sees it as an integral part of her life, which she wants to perpetuate. For her a world where her religion disappears in the next generation is a horrible thing.

And she is doing a perfectly logical thing in challenging an existential threat to that belief system (whether the person perpetuating the threat sees itself that way or not).
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Jason R.
Mon, Sep 13, 2021, 4:58pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DS9 S1: In the Hands of the Prophets

" Try to distance yourself from your particular background and inspect how life is for someone who not only has religion but needs it. Not imagine someone calling the most beloved, revered part of that as some secular term implying it's just the Wizard of Oz. It's really not complicated."

I see it less as the Bajorans feeling the term is disrespectful and more that they fear the secularization of their children and therefore the destruction of their religion. So they see the term "wormhole alien" as an existential threat to their way of life.

And where I for one part company with the writers is that I agree 100% with Kai Win that calling them that is absolutely a dire threat to their religion. I won't rehash my reasons for this which I stated ad nauseam on the other thread.

Suffice it to say the writers feel a happy median is possible but I don't agree.
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Jason R.
Fri, Sep 10, 2021, 9:44am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TOS S3: The Cloud Minders

"Star Trek tackles class struggle in 1969. But the leftists have only hijacked Star Trek in the last few weeks. Of course."

What was "left" in 1969 would make the "far right" of today look like pinko commies.
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Jason R.
Thu, Sep 9, 2021, 1:48pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

Even when I still liked Trek I detested time travel plots where history was changed to make the Nazis win WW2 or whatnot. Enterprise burned out of me any desire to see that sort of thing again.

Here we go again with the grim dark the future is a "totalitarian nightmare" - giving the writers excuse to masturbate on their woke angst over racism or whatever horrors they really really really want to explore but otherwise can't because - you know- Star Trek.

So if the Federation Gene created can't be the racist sexist ableist genderist trumpist totalitarian nightmare the writers just want so desperately to write about they just have Q snap his fingers and POOF! And even better, let them travel back to the 21st century where they can stop Trump from winning the 2016 election which is probably where Q made history go wrong.

The question is, what does it matter anyway since we already saw in season 1 what a grim gritty ugly world the protagonists lived in.
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Keith R.A. DeCandido
Fri, Sep 3, 2021, 10:30pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: LD S2: Mugato, Gumato

Just FYI, the doctor is named T'Ana, not D'Ana.

---KRAD
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Jason R.
Fri, Sep 3, 2021, 7:25am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S4: Galaxy's Child

@Booming I know it's a cliche to say but Chiang's story is far better than the movie imho.
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Jason R.
Fri, Sep 3, 2021, 6:27am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S4: Galaxy's Child

@Tidd / @Booming I don't know if I told you previously but if you like Black Mirror you have to read Ted Chiang. Several episodes are based on his short stories, including the very cool episode "Story of your Life" - one of the more plausible scifi concepts introduced in the series (ironically the episode was *not* based on Chiang's story "Story of your Life* - which was made into the movie Arrival starring Amy Adam's- but on a totally different Chiang story!) Chiang is like a modern Phillip K. Dick as his stories are super creative, feature amazing high concept scifi but have tons of heart.

I love Black Mirror, but Chiang is the real master here. Black Mirror's predictable cynicism (which Chiang does not share) becomes wearisome after a while.
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Jason R.
Fri, Sep 3, 2021, 6:21am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S5: The Perfect Mate

"The viewing audience - us - is very accustomed to females who please men, submit and conform to male desires. That is the way of the world and it is considered normal. But we react with disgust and animosity towards male subordination (see the virulent outrage created by “Angel One”)."

I just imagined it and really wasn't disgusted at all. I also wasn't outraged by Angel One - it was far too silly to elicit any strong emotion. Actually alot of dudes find submission sexy.
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Jason R.
Thu, Sep 2, 2021, 5:45pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S4: Galaxy's Child

Ya as I pointed out in the thread earlier there was 0 evidence that Geordie did anything sexual with the hologram - but was assuming he did just for the sake of argument.

There is an ironclad law of the universe that the instant there is the whisper of two people being involved it is a certainty that this will morph into common knowledge that they had sex, lots and lots of sex. And the more anybody denies it, the more sex they must have had.

Works for holograms. Kind of a Godwin's law.
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Jason R.
Thu, Sep 2, 2021, 12:49pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S4: Galaxy's Child

"So if the gay guy was physically superior, could potentially force his will on you and you knew nothing about his capacity for violence, would you still be flattered?"

Alright now we are getting into some more useful hypotheticals here.

The answer is: yes, I'd still be flattered, but if I really thought this scary dude was going to come after me and lock me in his dungeon? Indeed, I'd also feel fear and that fear would overshadow any fleeting feeling of flattery.

But you see how far we've strayed from nerdy Starfleet engineer makes sexy hologram scenario? Geordie isn't Buffalo Bill from Silence if the Lambs, or at least if he is, Levar Burton did a piss poor job of selling it on screen (do serial killers fit into Gene's ideal future?)

"Could one not argue based on that that men and women are not different at first but women change through negative experiences with men?"

Well sure, why not? I never said the difference was genetic or due to organic factors. I just said there seemed to be a difference. Your hypothesis is totally plausible.
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Jason R.
Thu, Sep 2, 2021, 12:32pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S4: Galaxy's Child

"The actual people in the black mirror episode found out at some point."

Not that it matters to our discussion but no they didn't.

*SPOILER*

The digital recreations recruited their real life counterparts to steal genetic samples in the villain's refrigerator so that he couldn't recreate them once they succeeded in committing digital "suicide". But they never told the counterpart who they were instead just blackmailing her anonymously via text message.

And no one in the real world finds out - that's the point- the villain ends up trapped in his digital world and because no one in real life knew about it (and it was the Christmas break) he (presumably) dies of starvation or whatnot.
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Jason R.
Thu, Sep 2, 2021, 12:24pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S4: Galaxy's Child

@Booming I'll ignore your ridiculous "would you feel the same way if horned demons shoved burning sticks up your behind while making out with your clone" hypotheticals and address the scenario that's actually applicable to this debate:

"Would you be equally flattered if a gay guy would make hologram Jason to do the dance with no pants? :)"

No matter how many ways you restate the question, the answer will be yes.

Would I prefer it to be a pretty woman? Sure. Am I terrified or upset by the idea that some gay dude is jerking off to my photo? No. Why would I care? It doesn't make me gay if gay dudes think I'm hot. If an ugly woman thinks I'm hot, I don't have to date her.

You seem to think that you're going to catch me in a contradiction or something but that just illustrates my point - we are totally not thinking about this in the same terms. I really do think there is a difference in how men and women see this sort of situation.
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Jason R.
Thu, Sep 2, 2021, 8:54am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S4: Galaxy's Child

To clarify my post, I'd be flattered over someone using my image as a *sex* fantasy (eg: Geordie) not over someone using my image as a *torture* fantasy (eg: Black Mirror)
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Jason R.
Thu, Sep 2, 2021, 8:51am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S4: Galaxy's Child

"Maybe you wouldn't feel uncomfortable towards a female coworker after finding out that this coworker has created a submissive holographic version of you to play around with in a very sexual way. Just watch this black mirror episode and imagine it to be a female captain.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgTtyfgzGc0&ab_channel=Netflix (very disturbing)"

In the Black Mirror episode they were *sentient* holograms - the holograms themselves were being tortured so what their real life counterparts would or wouldn't feel wasn't in issue (as I recall from that episode, the real life versions never discovered what was happening)

So no I wouldn't want to be tortured in someone's fantasy. But that's hardly the issue here.

In answer to your question, assuming the hologram was just a hologram? I'd be flattered, end of story. It seems ridiculous to not be flattered. Someone wants me and thinks I'm sexy. What could possibly be the downside to it? Who doesn't want to be attractive? Not me.
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Jason R.
Thu, Sep 2, 2021, 7:26am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S4: Galaxy's Child

"I tell you what - if someone I never met created a borderline sexual fantasy of me, it would be a cold day in hell before I became even comfortable in their company. "

I guess men and women really are different after all.
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R.J.
Tue, Aug 31, 2021, 7:35pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TOS S1: The Squire of Gothos

Interesting that Michael Barrier had such a substantial part during the first half of this episode. Wonder if William Shatner had a fit over this when he read the script. I also liked the fact that the landing party was made up of two minor characters in addition to McCoy giving the viewer the impression that the Enterprise actually had a capable crew other than the main cast.
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Jason R.
Tue, Aug 31, 2021, 12:02pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S6: Tapestry

I was just wondering though if it's necessarily a *crime*. I know there are laws that permit civil and quasi civil penalties but I was unsure if anyone actually could be prosecuted and do jail time for it.
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Jason R.
Tue, Aug 31, 2021, 9:54am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S6: Tapestry

"While consensual sex is legal with someone just over the age limit, and while it's merely frowned upon to have sex legally with someone way younger than you, coercion (e.g. to gatekeep a job market) would be criminal."

Hmmm. Not saying you are wrong but what criminal law would this violate? Is it actually *criminal* to offer someone a job only if they sleep with you?
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Jason R.
Tue, Aug 31, 2021, 6:49am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S6: Tapestry

"Not sure what this whole debate is about. The age of consent is 16 in most parts of the world."

Peter implied that she may I have slept with someone to get the job, which you correctly note wouldn't be illegal even if she was 16 (or 14 in many jurisdictions in the 1990s) but is certainly frowned upon.
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Jason R.
Mon, Aug 30, 2021, 8:48am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S6: Tapestry

At least in Tapestry Patrick Stewart being with Marta was a contrivance of the plot since he wasn't really "there" - from Marta's POV he was her age. Not sure why a 17 year old actress was needed to play what was presumably a 20 something character. Usually in Hollywood it's the opposite with 25 year olds as stand-ins for teenagers.
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Jason R.
Sat, Aug 28, 2021, 8:46am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S6: Tapestry

"As good as this episode is, and as much as I like it, I can never, ever forget for a single second of it that J.C. Brandy (Marta) was 17 years old when she had that steamy, we're-about-to-have-sex kissing scene with Patrick Stewart, who was 52."

Ummm what? My memory of Marta is a little fuzzy but I would have guessed maybe 25. 17? you sure?
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Jason R.
Sat, Aug 28, 2021, 8:45am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S4: The Wounded

"One question: how does O’Brien demote from Tactical Officer under Maxwell to Transporter Chief?"

It's the Enterprise, the flagship of the fleet. Not necessarily a demotion.
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R.J.
Wed, Aug 25, 2021, 7:48am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S7: Masks

After all these years, I am still unable to watch this episode from beginning to end. It's the only one I haven't seen all the way through.
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