As the candidacy announcements come rolling in, we at The News continue to be less than impressed by the options for the next leader of the free world. Rather than weigh the current candidates and come to an educated, lesser-of-two-evils decision, we are going to introduce our own candidate: a man with compassion, leadership skills, a sense of humor and extensive experience in settling conflicts between even the most different of species. It is in this semester’s final editorial that we will formally endorse a bipartisan presidential candidate: Captain Jean-Luc Picard of the USS Enterprise-D.

Described by his peers as deeply moral, highly logical and intelligent, the Starfleet captain possesses characteristics that are hard to find in today’s congressional chambers.

Unlike his predecessor Captain James Kirk, Picard stands for peace and diplomacy. Instead of blowing his enemies away or threatening ideological warfare, he would rather negotiate and find the diplomatic solutions that could eventually lead to a long-standing peace.

While his character leads us to believe he is well-suited to perform the duties a diplomat, his compassion must not be mistaken for weakness. The captain, a native of France, has proven tenfold his ability to command an army and leave nothing to chance in battle.

No stranger to the front lines, Picard was taken prisoner by the Cardassians on stardate 46357.4 where he spent days subject to interrogation by Chancellor Gorkon. Despite being starved, exhausted and mentally tested, the captain understood the importance of his mission in the overarching relationship between the planet Cardassia and those here on Earth and maintained his position before finally being rescued.

In an equal number of threatening situations, Picard has proven his competence as a commander-in-chief rather than soldier. On stardate 44995.3, Picard traveled to the Klingon homeland to oversee Gowron’s installation as leader, an appointment he neither agreed with nor wished to attend. When his ship was intercepted, stranding him on the hostile planet, the captain was remotely able to rescue the kidnapped Chief Security Officer Warf, and negotiate with Sela, a Romulan officer, while ensuring the least possible number of casualties.

As president, Picard would be the chief diplomat of the United States, forced to negotiate and understand a variety of different ideas and cultures. No better was this ability proven than on stardate 45944.1, just a year before his Cardassian capture, when Picard was transported to the planet Kataan where he was forced to assimilate and work with the native people to find employment, start a family and eventually take his knowledge back to the decks of the Enterprise.

Picard, as both an intellectual and moral compass, embodies all of the necessary characteristics we look for in a president of the United States. Unlike the presidential candidates who have announced their intentions thus far, the former captain of the USS Enterprise-D has the compassion, strength and ability to lead a progressive Congress, command an army and lead a team with the best ability to operate a functioning government.

With Captain Kathryn Janeway as vice president, Chief Medical Officer Beverly Crusher as first lady and Lieutenant Commander Data as his campaign manager, the Picard for President campaign will easily sweep the electoral college and give the American people the leadership they’ve been waiting for.

Photo courtesy Mike Carlucci, Creative Commons.