14Jan 2022 by
In order to complete this assignment you will need to watch the Star Trek episode, “The Measure of a Man.”
Imagine that you are a crew member on the USS Enterprise that has known and worked with Lt. Commander Data for years. You’ve been invited to assist either Picard or Riker (choose either argument) at the hearing. The strength of your supporting argument will determine whether or not he will be disassembled for Maddox’s research.
Write an argument (one in which you can imagine using in a formal hearing) that might convince the judge that Data is sentient or not. Once you’ve seen the episode you will have heard the arguments for each side of the case, so you should first decide whose side you are on. Do you think Data is a sentient being? When you watch the episode pay extra attention to the tone and diction being used in the hearing and try to imitate them in your argument. Remember that you are a crew member of the USS Enterprise, not a student at UCI in 2020. You are space explorer and you know Data pretty well. You need to come up with your own reasons to support your argument, but you can also build on the evidence that Picard and Riker present. Obviously we know how this case ends, but try and write your argument as if you didn’t know the outcome. Feel free to watch another episode that centers on Data if you think it might help (check out “Hero Worship” from Season 5, or “In Theory” from Season 1). Really ponder the question: what makes us human?
This assignment should be fun! Try to be creative. Write about 500-800 words.