Dr. Bashir has been chosen to be the model for Starfleet's latest holographic doctor. Dr. Lewis Zimmerman comes to the station for extensive field studies. Dr. Bashir is uncomfortable when his parents Richard and Amsha Bashir arrive - invited by Zimmerman who is going to examine Bashir's childhood as well. Julian is particularly concerned that the two could reveal a childhood secret that would cost him his career - that he has been genetically enhanced. This is illegal in the Federation. The two later tell their son that they won't let that happen. But they are actually talking to the holographic version, with Zimmerman and O'Brien witnessing the revelation. Dr. Bashir decides to resign before the fateful report is filed. But Sisko arranges an alternative solution to the dilemma. Richard Bashir accepts a two-year sentence, while his son is allowed to remain in service, albeit with a stain on his record.
Errors and Explanations
- Hans Thielman on Saturday, January 02, 1999 - 11:56 am: I was very disturbed by this episode. A Starfleet Admiral exercises authority over Dr. Bashir's father, who is a civilian. Even though the admiral would have jurisdiction over Dr. Bashir as it pertains to the doctor's Starfleet career, he should have no authority or power over Bashir's father, other than possibly to refer the matter to civilian Federation law enforcement officials. The genetic enhancement done on Julian Bashir took place some 25 years earlier, yet Bashir's father is still being prosecuted and imprisoned. I would think the statute of limitations for the offense would have long since expired. 2 years in prison also seems somewhat disproportionate. Kasidy Yates served considerably less time for smuggling. This may be a special case, due to Julian being a Starfleet officer. CdnTim 1634 EST 16Feb2021 - Starfleet seems quite vast, assuming multiple roles in the Federation...perhaps one of them is as the federal law enforcement agency?
- Why prosecute Bashir's father and not also the individuals who performed the genetic engineering on young Julian (Jules)? It may not be possible to locate them.
- Genetic enhancement is illegal except to correct serious birth defects. From the dialogue, it seemed to me that young Julian suffered from birth defects of some kind. In that case, the genetic enhancement done on Julian should have been legal. At the very least, Dr. Bashir's father or his lawyer could have raised birth defects as a defense. Perhaps this only covers obvious physical defects, such as impaired hearing. CdnTim 1635 EST 16Feb2021 - Doesn't Julian himself imply that "Jules" was just a bit slower than average, and his parents never gave him a chance to develop into the person he could have been? Perhaps "Jules" never could have been a top-ranked doctor, but not everyone is going to be at the head of the class, that's not a defect.
- If Starfleet bans genetically enhanced persons within its ranks, why doesn't it have some kind of test to screen out such persons before they join? It may not be possible to detect any such modification. CdnTim 1636 EST 16Feb2021 - There may also be a right to privacy, and DNA sampling is not permitted without probably cause. Recall that Crewman Simon Tarses in The Drumhead was part Romulan, not part Vulcan, which may (or may not) have shown on a DNA profile.
- According to Voyager, Zimmerman was married, apparently to a woman who looked like Kes. Did he get a divorce? The dialogue suggested that Zimmerman hadn't been married. The marriage was part of a holodeck delusion experienced by Voyager’s EMH.
- Sharon Jordan on Sunday, January 31, 1999 - 12:40 pm: I have a nit too. It was at the age of fifteen that Bashier noticed something different with himself. Yet, right after he got the enhancements, he didn't notice that all of a sudden he was doing better in everything, better than everyone else. He may have been six or seven, but even at this age, he should have been aware that something was drastically different with himself. He should be at least aware of the improvement to atleast go na na to his peers who teased him. Allan Olley on Wednesday, March 03, 1999 - 7:28 pm: Although Young Jules was apparently having big problems in school this is not a serious birth defect (well it might be but is does not seem to have to have been the symptons described were pretty vague and I know nothing of medicine, or human biology), I think and so it does not seem unreasonable to me that the federation would not consider it a serious defect. I think the serious birth defects that the federation is thinking of those is actually deformity, mental illness and brain damage. CdnTim 1638 EST 16Feb2021 - The genetic engineering may have been subtle, designed to "go off" as Bashir got older, especially puberty, to avoid an instant change at the moment of the upgrade.
- John-Boy on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 5:11 pm: The real nit here is, right in the beginning, Sisko tells Dr. Zimmerman that Deep Space Nine doesn't have an EMH because most of their computers are Cardassian in design, and their not compatible. Then later, Zimmerman not only runs the LMH through the DS9 Cardassian sickbay computers, but also the EMH! Kaekae on Saturday, August 21, 2004 - 7:19 am: I thought they were in a holosuite. After all, the sick bay doesn't have holoemitters. LUIGI NOVI on Saturday, August 21, 2004 - 10:43 am: He could've installed holoemitters for his stay there. Or used portable ones.
- Before anyone points it out, yes, the question mark is missing from the episode title, as this is how the title appeared on the episode titlecard!
- According to the startrek.com episode list, the provisional stardate for this episode is 50601.