We are the Borg

“We are the Borg! Resistance is futile.” Jean Luke Picard fires his phaser at the robotic/organic creatures before him. Jean’s first shot would take down a drone and then the second and then the third would be sure to follow the first. Just then, the effectiveness of the phaser rapidly decreased to that of a flash light. “We are the Borg. Resistance is futile.” The Borg adapted to the Captain’s weapon and at some point Jean Luke Picard became one of the Borg; they assimilated him into the collective, by infecting him with technology. He became an emotionless cyborg.

I am unaware of the writer’s subplots for the show Star Trek, “The Next Generation”, but I see huge correlations to a similar, yet less technological, foe – the invasive microorganism. As it slowly becomes common knowledge that our weapons for these invisible foes are becoming more benign, life without anti-biotics may become an incomprehensible reality for Westerners. I am living proof to the full life western medicine has given me. (I am type 1 diabetic that once got an infection in an insulin injection site.)

How do you recover from a “staph” infection that has spread beneath the 7 layers of skin located in your left arm? An answer is 5 days on an i.v. drip of Vancomycin – once hailed as the “last resort antibiotic”. Well I was lucky, but what would a staph infection that has adapted to this weapon look like? It wouldn’t look like “the Borg” … I think it would look like Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). MRSA, pronounced mur-sa, is a resistant form of “staph”. How do we stop MRSA? Maybe, amputate a limb and get a bionic arm. In that case I would then resemble “the Borg.” Then Jean Luke Picard (the cured human version) would teleport from the fictitious future to phaser me to a pile of carbon. This would prevent my insulin pump morphing with me and my newly bestowed prosthetic arm to become the first Borg drone! Fantastic! Captain Picard just saved countless cultures that the space veering Borg would have destroyed.

In reality this wouldn’t work, the only time travel that exists is the tick of the clock. We live now so let’s care more about the effects of our decisions as they ripple with each tick. Let our compassion for selfless ambition out compete the selfish agenda and maybe one day MRSA will be out competed by a non-resistant bacterium.

“… the thoughtless person playing with penicillin is morally responsible for the death of the man who finally succumbs to infection with the penicillin-resistant organism. I hope this evil can be averted.”

 – Sir Alexander Fleming June 26, 1945

“We are the Borg. Resistance is futile.”

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