No laser fallacy

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The no laser fallacy is a myth that has its roots in the TNG episode "The Outrageous Okona". When facing primitive ships armed with lasers, a member of the Enterprise-D's bridge crew mutters, "Lasers won't even penetrate our navigational deflectors". For years, Trektards have insisted that this quote proves that Federation ships are completely immune to any laser, regardless of power level.

Because Star Wars turbolasers incorporate the word 'laser' in their name, versus-debating Trekkies assume that the statement (or rather their interpretation of it) automatically applies to Star Wars weapons, including the Death Star superlaser. This argument is so stupid even Darkstar argues against it.

Rebuttals

  1. They never said "regardless of firepower", and to assume a single statement has no limits is completely unreasonable.
  2. Later in that very episode, Picard made it clear the statement referred to the lasers on those particular ships.
  3. Every time the Enterprise has flown too close to a star, it has sustained damage or was threatened, indicating that EM radiation of the sort delivered by lasers is dangerous if intense enough.
  4. Numerous other TNG episodes [1] have clearly shown lasers/EM weapons to be a threat, if not necessarily a dire one.
  5. Borg Cubes have damaged Federation starships with laser weapons[2].
  6. The properties of real lasers, Star Trek lasers and Star Wars lasers have little if any common ground. As such, a statement about one carries little weight with respect to the others.

Notes

  1. TNG "The Last Outpost", "Loud as a Whisper", "Suddenly Human", "Conundrum"
  2. TNG "Q Who", "Best of Both Worlds"
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