Shatner's commencement speech
Shatner (Senator, southwest region; third in succession to the King): Redoma Mandi project commencement speech
We planters are generally quick to dismiss the affairs of the world. Travel is slow and arduous for us. The activities of the off-island races often require super-planter dexterity. Foreign trade is rarely beneficial to those without the gifts to properly cultivate luffa and without the biochemistry to fully use its products. And so, usually, we live happily in the company of our own.
Not so this time. Our crisis transcends economics, transcends the differences between us and those on the mainland. The weather has not been kind to us; our crop yields are down, and we can ignore this no more. We subsist on fewer resources than we once did; most of us find ways to maintain our livelihood during this emergency.
But some planters have given up hope. Listen: planters among us are growing luffa structures and permanently implanting them in their own bodies. You’ve heard these structures referred to as grafts. They’re a cop-out, a cheap way to avoid our true problem. A significant amount of luffa in one’s body appears to slow the metabolism. So a person with grafts can go for longer on limited food. But that person is also dull and slow, not at all the vivacious person we expect a planter to be. Our very cultural identity is at risk.
If your children have commissioned and implanted grafts, my heart goes out to you. I know the lifelessness you see in them. If, however, you implant grafts yourself, or worse, graft luffa onto your children as a cost-cutting measure, then I say this to you now: you are forcing your own evolution down a path that ends in darkness; there is no place in our society for you.
Yes, the technology is impressive. The engineers who now develop grafts are brilliant, among the brightest of all planters. But they are evil. Worse, no arguments of reason, nor even regulation on our part, can quell this dullness growing among us.
Grafts are a cancer – I use the term quasi-literally – that will continue to spread through our civilization until conditions improve. I feel confident that if we can work together to restore our climate, the temptation of grafts will wither. The Council has the secrets we need to build our future and we must lend them our support.
So I go to Redoma Mandi. I will represent our great people faithfully, I will work tirelessly with the people of the mainland, and I will bring home the secrets of a better world.