Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Da Vinci V



Third Associate Judge: “You really consider yourself like da Vinci?”
Laughter is heard from the courtroom. Reporter and Dr. Hokius looked at each other, disturbed by that sound from discussion which continued by Novatius who didn't seem to be disturbed at all.
Novatius: “I worked so hard and I knew the craziness of burnt knowledge, unrealized power that I found right under the noses of others. Colossal possibilities appear when you step across one horizon and perceive another. And, at the same time, you are conscious of the tens of thousands of steps needed for man to cross this new unknown distance. I respect everyone who was in a similar situation. They seem to you very close, though they are separated by hundreds of years and different experiences.”
First Associate Judge: “A moment ago you said that you don't respect any authorities.”
Novatius's lawyer: “He didn't say that!”
Judge: “We will not dispute this. Defendant, how did you become so alienated? I could say misanthropic.”
Novatius: “Da Vinci himself said that the greatest love is born from the greatest knowledge of what we love. And I, all my life but particularly recently, have devoted myself to knowing myself -- and through myself other people -- and I think that I expend more effort on this than you.”
Judge: “But unlike me, you, with your decision consciously hurt humankind.”
Novatius: “On the contrary. If my invention was fully developed and applied, it would, no doubt, seem a momentary advance. Our generation wouldn't be afraid of cruel, premature death. But at the same time, it could get rid of the responsibility for the future of mankind, whose sensitivities are the product of thousands of years of evolution. Unexpected changes in our genetic code, systematic attacks. These threats try our ability to survive and adapt. If we are genetically conserved, we start to be an ameliorated monoculture that will lose the possibilities to be found at the outer limits. And in this way, we can also lose the ability to react to extreme situations which can light up this special spark in humankind's quintessential nature. Man became the most developed species through his ability to adapt to extremes through opportunism and absence of his own specialization. New inherited traits come from faults and the appearance of mistakes. Progress without mistakes, faults, and suffering is impossible.”
Second Associate Judge: “Are you able, looking into the eyes of those who are dying today, to say that you regard them as inevitable cast-offs of progress?”
Novatius: “No, but are you able to look into the eyes of the generation that in exchange for prolonged life now could jettison all of civilization and its future? The generation which breaks the tie that emanates from the pain of many upcoming generations? If our species submitted to this therapy, it would degenerate.”
Third Associate Judge: “You are a defender of perverse characters, a prophet of errors, pain and suffering, and all of this you conceal in confused phrases about progress and humanity. What is progress? It's even difficult to define it. But about suffering and pain, no one doubts.”
Novatius: “There was a man like Leonardo da Vinci, but in philosophy. His name was Soren Kierkegaard, and he said that genius burns in suffering. And I believe that thanks to genius of this kind, mankind came to this stage of development, and we have no right to stop now because we are afraid of the pain, which has accompanied us throughout our history.”
Second Associate Judge: “I'm an amateur in this topic. But I think the danger of what you speak about can't be manifest immediately. And the progress, which you believe in, surely brings the starting point for the semblance of this unsolved problem, too. Are you sure you didn't make a mistake in your consideration? Can you assure me that you are not a victim of these sacrificial mistakes that you pervasively appeal to?”
Reporter: “The defendant is quiet, so I'll quickly ask our science expert -- do you, as a scientist, also think that humans could degenerate in these conditions?”
Scientific Expert: “Fortunately, I'm not on the bench and I have no duty to judge. I can say only that thanks to this court, Novatius, at least, explained his reason for concealing his invention and destroying it.”
Reporter: “Can the result of this process change? This is a question for our legal expert...”
Legal Expert: “Certainly not. Also because, whatever the defendant's arguments, it doesn't change the conditions of his freedom -- publishing his invention.”
Reporter: “During the whole court case, the prosecutor is strikingly silent. As our listeners have surely noticed.”
Legal Expert: “The prosecutor has no other role in this case. Only the threat of proposing the final punishment, which this trial will approach when it draws to its conclusion. Punishment could be an extreme means. The paradoxical victory of the prosecutor could be when Novatius obtains his pardon by publishing his secret.”
Reporter: “Many citizens, and even some governments, ask that the defendant be executed for what they call a crime against humanity. Because of the quick progress of the trial, we could not present a broad spectrum of views, samples of opinions from other people who, as one of the associate judges pointed out, the defendant considers the inevitable "cast-offs of progress'.”
Legal Expert: “I think that there are exaggerated emotions which don't have a lawful and material base. If this regional court succumbs to this pressure and on this special occasion decides 'in the name of humanity', we can think about manifest punishment which none of the higher courts presumably accept.”
Reporter: “This case will not be decided in this court?”
Legal Expert: “Obviously not. What we heard here we can regard as an overture because after an appeal will follow a long line of appeals leading from the National Court to the Supreme Continental Court and later international courts.”
Reporter: “The Judge has finished today's proceedings, and for myself and our guests I say goodbye to our listeners. Stay tuned for continuing coverage.”
Red-light lamp in studio went out. Speaker is for a while full of whistling and humming, bustle and music.
Director: “Peter, when you plan any future programs tell us about it so we are not so surprised.”
Reporter is laughing: “Don't worry. From Novatius there will be a never-ending soap opera. And what about Mrs. Kisbon?”
Director: “Just said good-bye to continental listeners, but now maybe she is saving her comments for this series of appeals.”
Reporter is relaxing for a moment in his chair. Headphones down, his eyes are closed. Not for a long time as Legal expert, Dr. Hokius, is in hurry: “Can we go?”
Reporter is in a moment on his legs, shining like robot after full-energy re-loading. Reporter is shaking a hands to his guests.
Reporter: “Thank you, but don't run away. Producer has prepared contract for you.”
Scientific Expert: “Were we that good?”
Reporter is only smiling silently. He is satisfied.

News Presenter: “...and to conclude today's news, in scientific news we want to add one item. A trial of scientist Novatius, about which we brought detailed information and have broadcast live already, finished today. The court, after much consideration, at the proposal of the prosecutor, handed down a guilty verdict and a death sentence. The defendant refused his right to appeal to any other court.”

The End

Translated by Robert M. Davis

No comments: