Re: [gundam] Orphans Of The Ecliptic


Mark Simmons (scorpio@best.com)
Wed, 3 Mar 1999 13:18:55 -0800


Dafydd writes,

>The scenario resembles that Salem Village, where everyone dresses and lives
>like a Puritan settler of the 1600s, or the now-vanishing Amish
>settlements, where no technology beyond muscle-powered machines is permitted.

  Or, for that matter, the "Museum Fremen" of the later Dune novels, who
keep the ways of their ancestors alive as a state-sponsored task rather
than out of pure respect for tradition.

>Just as the Federation is _not_ a democracy, so too it may not be
>egalitarian in it's notion of citizenship. One of the wedges dividing
>Earthnoid and Spacenoid may be that one must be born of the Elite to
>qualify as an Earthnoid rather than being born on Earth as we've previously
>assumed.

  Quite likely. Only those with special connections get to live on Earth;
Amuro and his family are elites with government ties, Bright's an elite
(and Mirai is well-connected in her own right), and Sayla's cover identity
presumably gives her Earth residence rights. Hayato and Frau aren't elites,
but they may have been given residence rights as a reward for their One
Year War service. And, as we can see from V Gundam, even those who have
been given dispensation to remain on Earth can have it revoked.

  Note that Hathaway Noah, though the son of an elite born and raised on
Earth, has to use his cover identity as a botanist to get to Earth in the
Hathway's Flash novels. Either elite kids lose their status once they grow
up, or the Federation has gotten stricter since he was a kid.

  Since Usso and Hathaway were both born on Earth, of legal residents, but
end up without residence rights, we can conclude that being born on Earth
doesn't entitle you to stay there. But this is a matter of immigration
status, not citizenship per se. And it doesn't mean that the Federation is
concerned at all with excluding spacenoids from general-purpose
citizenship; rather, its only concern is policing the Earth population.

>If bloodline, not birthplace, is the determining factor, than the 10% who
>are Earthnoid and the 90% who are Spacenoid are fixed in their respective
>identity as such. _That_ would make a _big_ difference in the political
>climate!

  Yep, it would. I think your Czech Republic analogy, while probably
irrelevant in terms of terrestrial nations, probably holds water when
considering the issue of Earth residence. Though, from the Hathaway
example, elite status may not be inheritable. (Usso's family, on the other
hand, can probably be characterized as resident aliens or some other form
of second-class citizen, whose residence rights - visas, if you will - may
be revoked at any time.)

-- Mark

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Mark Simmons <mailto:scorpio@best.com>
MacAddict: the magazine! <http://www.macaddict.com/>
Gundam: the Project! <http://gundam.anime.net/>
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