Spock Out of His Mind

 

On a lighter note, this has to be one of the funniest scenes in Star Trek.

This is from the episode, This Side of Paradise. The Enterprise is assigned to check on a colony on the planet Omicron Ceti III which is exposed to lethal “Berthold rays”. They are surprised to find the colonists alive and well thanks to strange plant whose spores not only protect them from the radiation but make them all mellow and content. After being exposed to the spores, Spock is finally able to let loose. The look on Kirk’s face is priceless. Sulu looks like he’s been drugged after breathing in the spores.

Kirk cures Spock by picking a fight with him, and nearly gets himself killed.

 

This is actually kind of a sad episode. Kirk, Spock, and the entire crew of the Enterprise find perfect happiness and contentment on Omicron Ceti III under the influence of the spores. At the end, Spock admits that he was happy for the first time in his life. He can freely love Leila, a woman who loved him. Yet, in the end Kirk and Spock choose their duty to the Enterprise and Starfleet over life on the planet.

Star Trek was made in the old days, when good values could still occasionally be found on television. I think that the theme of this episode, like several others, is one of choosing duty and responsibility over self-indulgence, and ultimately freedom over happy slavery (to the spores). They don’t make them like this anymore.

 

Mr. Spock Brings Peace to the Middle-East

From the BBC and Best of the Web. Leonard Nimoy aka Mr. Spock has weighed in on his solution to the intractable problem of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.

In an open letter published on the website of the non-governmental organisation, Americans for Peace Now, Mr Nimoy explains his support for a two-state solution.

He makes reference to his experience on the fictional Starship Enterprise to help express his views.

He characterises this as “a secure democratic Israel as the Jewish State alongside an independent Palestinian state”.

The 80-year-old actor argues that the two-state solution “is still critical in this region for both Israel and the Palestinian people“.

To illustrate his assertions that “the time for recriminations is over” and that “assigning blame over all priorities is self-defeating”, Mr Nimoy describes an early Star Trek episode entitled, Let That Be Your Last Battlefield.

“Two men, half black, half white, are the last survivors of their peoples who have been at war with each other for thousands of years, yet the Enterprise crew could find no differences separating these two raging men,” he says.

“But the antagonists were keenly aware of their differences – one man was white on the right side, the other was black on the right side. And they were prepared to battle to the death to defend the memory of their people who died from the atrocities committed by the other.”

The actor goes on that he does not mean “to belittle the very real issues that divide Israelis and Palestinians”. However, he says, the fictitious scenario shows that “myth can be a snare”.

That’s all very well and he has a point, but I wish he would explain all that to the Palestinians. They seem to be the ones most interested in assigning blame and keeping the conflict going. The conflict would be over if they would just admit that Israel has a right to exist and actually negotiate in good faith. Until that happens there is not going to be peace.