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Journal of rafael (2125)

Tuesday October 01, 2002
06:52 AM

Minority report, the short story

[ #8112 ]
I've finished to read Minority Report, the short story by Philip K. Dick. (No, I haven't seen the movie, it's not out yet here in France.) As always with sci-fi stories that deal with precognition, I didn't feel very comfortable reading it. A few comments on the plot. The good guy in the story is obviously the guy who invented the whole pre-crime prevention organization. Precognitive mutants predict crimes and the soon-to-be criminals are put in jail before they have a chance to commit their crime. The problems arise when someone sees the mutant's predictions before they realize -- a variant on the classic time paradox theme, very cleverly concluded by Dick.

Let's put this in theological terms. The people that are put in jail -- in hell --, didn't commit any crime -- any sin. So what misses to them is the grace. Typical christian protestant Weltanschauung, put at its extreme, caricatural point. Potential criminals are denied the freedom of choice, even if they know the future beforehand.

For what it's worth, P. K. Dick wasn't a christian, at least in the traditional sense of the term. At the end of his life, he was gone completely insane, believing that some alien entity took control of part of his brain, and that this same entity was already present in Elijah and in John the Baptist.

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