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Religion & Politics

Posted on Tue Jun 1st, 2010 @ 11:31am by Kasik Torr

Mission: Wolf In The Fold. Season 2, Episode 1
Location: The Station Commander's Office
Timeline: A Day or so after the Anubis Docks

As Beverly pawed over two dozen status and maintenance reports on the station refit and perhaps forty other bits and pieces of admin, there was a chime at her office door. Something sounded decidedly sick about that chime.

With a sigh, she made a mental note that yet again she would have to take a look at the systems, however minor they were, within her office. "Come in. Its open... Or at least it should now!"

The man who entered was unfamiliar, but his Vedek's robes marked him out pretty clearly. Beverly remembered seeing some details about the Bajoran mission at DS7, headed up by a Vedek. It was a lowly post for a significant religious leader, and the notes had said something about it having caused some kind of stir amongst the Vedek assembly.

"Admiral DeVuor? I don't believe we've met. I'm Torr Kasik. I run the Bajoran mission. I thought I'd welcome you aboard DS7 on behalf of the civilian population."

"Thank you... Not that we have much in the way of civilian populace yet", she cocked her head at the Vedek, recognising his face as a fore runner for the recent elections for the Kai role within the Bajoran religious sects. She was unsure how he had ended up here, but it was obvious that he had not been a successful delegate. "Were you not one of the advanced party sent to the station?"

Kasik nodded.

"The Bajoran government sent a team of aid workers to help out with the initial clean-up and set-up, a couple of us were from the Temple. Lt Solis actually asked me to be on the first team aboard, given I've got some experience with older Cardassian technology."

"Were you aware the Temple is setting up a mission here on the station?"

"I wasn't aware... But if it brings the civilian population back to the station then all the better". Beverly set aside the PADD she had been reviewing, finally having made a dent on the small mountain that had been plaguing her since her arrival to the station.

Kasik held up a Bajoran PADD, a little sheepishly.

"I... can see you have a few of these waiting already. But I'm afraid I have one more to add to the pile. DS7 has a secure prisoners and hazardous materials section right down in the deeper sections of the station. I understand Starfleet doesn't yet have any specific plans for the space. My government has requested permission to set up a psychiatric ward in those sections. It'd be for what we call 'Thae-shara' patients. Hard phrase to translate, but 'Incurable' is probably pretty close."

"I'm not exactly sure why they wanted me to deliver it. They might have thought you'd be impressed by Vedek's robes, but more likely it was just a way to avoid this getting too much press by going through standard channels. It's a bit of a sensitive issue, politically."

Beverly glanced over the details on the PADD. High security refit details, very tightly planned. Multiply redundant monitoring systems. Security personnel. High-grade medical and psych staff, constantly on call. Detailed contingency plans. Someone had put a lot of thought into this. Someone who wanted this facility to run as smooth as butter, attracting no attention.

"My government's hoping to make it a joint venture with Starfleet medical, but they're already taking care of that end of the negotiations."

Her curiosity had been tweaked and one question was burning to be asked. "Will this be the only instillation that would house these patients and what is the condition they suffer from, or would it just be a general scope facility?"

"I believe it's intended to be a general scope facility. There'll probably be a fair proportion of patients with war related psychoses though. There's a few of those that are being made poster children for opposing the reconciliation efforts with Cardassia at the moment, and I think the government wants them somewhere out of the way. Or at least somewhere away from Bajor."

"There's other psychiatric facilities on Bajor. I think officially this will be where the tough cases are sent - to 'benefit from additional Starfleet medical expertise'. Unofficially I think it'll be the politically inconvenient cases more than the tough ones. Plus whoever the Federation ends up sending here."

"I actually think it's a good thing. These people are far more likely to actually get the help they need when the politics are taken out of the equation. A half federation facility with some Starfleet psychologists is probably going to do that job a lot more effectively. But I can understand it might add a few extra challenges to your job."

Picking up on the implication that the good Vedek had not been given all of the information about the station and its political government set up.

"The station is Starfleet run, nothing to do with Cardassia or Bajor... Starfleet will be running administration of the sector form this station".

"Right," Kasik said with a nod. "That doesn't surprise me, actually. The Office of Administration didn't actually say that explicitly, but it did occur to me that they were asking permission more than normal. If there's one thing they're good at it's pretending they run more things than they actually do. Well... all the better in this case."

He looked thoughtful for a moment.

"Does that mean you're not totally comfortable with a Bajoran temple on the station? I've been told Starfleet considers itself a religiously neutral organisation. That can mean... a few different things, in my experience."

She pondered the question a moment, not sure if it was meant at face value or if there was more of a political undertone to the question. Still, she had no view either way on the subject, religion was just that, not something she read into but she understood the need of religion for some people, and all the more for the Bajorans as it was the singular thing that pulled most of the people of Bajor through the occupation.

"I may not be the greatest advocate of religion Vedek, but in regards of you opening a temple on the promenade... Well that is more a question that I cannot ask. The Federation prohibits me from interfering in the local politics, that included religion, and since we are technically in Bajoran space then you have every right to open up business".

Kasik nodded, thoughtfully. That was an answer which said an awful lot, whether the Admiral had intended to or not. He hesitated a moment, before speaking again.

"Well... just a suggestion, although you didn't hear it from me. I think there's people with a fair bit of clout on Bajor wanting this psychiatric facility to happen. If you're down on parts or maintenance personnel for getting this station up and running, tell them you'd need those things sorted out first. I suspect you'd see the resources you need become available very quickly and with little fuss or paperwork."

"I have no problem with this Eminence... Is that the right term?", she smiled, still not fully versed with the religious structure on Bajor.

Kasik looked slightly startled.

"Uuh... no. No, 'Eminence' is an address reserved for the Kai. I'd rather you didn't start that sort of rumour, if possible..."

"'Your Grace' is the proper address for a Vedek, but to be honest I don't care for it much. 'Vedek' or 'Vedek Torr' is fine if you're feeling formal. 'Kasik' once you're up to it. I'm a little over all the pomp and ceremony around the title, really. And given you're not Bajoran, I think we can do without it in private."

"As soon as we have the critical systems and support systems back online," Beverly continued, "I will assign an engineering team to this project".

"Thank-you, Admiral," Kasik replied cheerfully. "I'll pass that back along."


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