Memoir: Concerning Martial Law

Another pamphlet distributed around to the hubs of the MV Elpis, complete with a funny cartoon on the back.

There are people hereabouts who aren't too happy with Martial Law. You'll see them every now again, walking the corridors, plainly unhappy, grumbling when they're off shift. They follow orders because they don't have much choice, but if they had their way, none of this would be happening. I am lucky enough to call some of them friend. You probably know them as Marines.

Does that surprise you? Knowing that Martial Law is a not something our protectors on the Cerberus are particularly keen on? Of course it does, we're all full up on the notion that they are oppressors, power-hungry death mongers who step on our rights and kick propriety around whenever it suits them. They don't like it, we don't like it, and to some of us its just that simple. Why not end it. We want our independence, after all!

When I was fourteen I wanted independence. I told my Aunt and Uncle as much, in a raised voice. What I meant was that I wanted to do what I wanted, when I wanted to do it. I didn't want a curfew, I didn't want to have to call, and I very definitely did not want to be grounded whenever I was in violation of something or other. I was young, I was angry, I wanted my independence!

Of course, I still wanted a roof over my head. Food at the table was nice. The heat and power were worth hanging on to. Having my uncle around in case scary people came was definitely a plus. I said I wanted independence, what I really meant was that I wanted all the benefits of being kept while maintaining license to do whatever I pleased.

It isn't enough to simply demand an end to Martial Law. We have to look at the realities of our situation. We are dependent on the Battlestar Group for so much. Our security from internal threats, our protection from external threats, maintenance for our systems, medical care, even our Command crew. We don't want to give up our protections, the things that make our lives on Elpis possible. But we don't like having to answer to the Military. We're like what I was, kids who demand independence while clinging to the comforts of home.

No one is happy with Martial Law. But simply ending it is not an option. In order to achieve self-rule, we need reliable security, a trained engineering team, an equitable government and competent command crew. We cannot simultaneously demand our independence while continuing to demand these things from the Military as well. Rather than plotting to make the military look stupid, or look like aggressors, we should be pursuing answers to these questions. The military does not WANT to police us, they want to protect us. You can ask any MP who is stuck on duty over here, being spit on by the very people she enlisted to protect.

So ask for self-rule, but as you do, work for a way to make self-rule viable. Let us work to end Martial Law, to create a system that does not make the military do what it does not want to do. We want it to end, so do they. If we are both pursuing the same goal, why not work towards it together?

Natalya Rassvet

PS- If anyone is looking to have some stitching or patching done with their clothes, please look me up, and we can make a deal.

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