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Libertad
2014-07-14, 11:12 PM
This is for a Pathfinder supplement I'm working on. I want to get your collective opinions and answers. There is no wrong answer.

First, Iím going to make up two fictional societies off the top of my head. After reading my short descriptions of both, I want you to assign them the alignment you think most closely matches their moral and ethical structures. Ready? Here we go.

Society A is a small isolated village. Its inhabitants prize the benefits of collectivism and working together, their economy based upon a system of barters, favors, and shaming to encourage good behavior and cooperation. They have no mayor or king, instead deciding major decisions via temporary alliances of town councils who cooperate together against a major threat or issue. Everybody is equal, and there is no private property; everything beyond personal possessions is either shared or used by people with the proper training. This society does not see the value of written laws, but they do have a malleable system of social rules intended to keep things operating smoothly.

Society B is an advanced civilization of art, knowledge, magic, and warfare. Its people pride themselves on their heritage and favored status in the world, believing that their ancestry alone makes them worthier than other people. Racism is prevalent in their ways of thinking, and they have trouble understanding why outside cultures act as though this is not the case. Children of mixed race are doomed to a life social isolation and ostracism, leading many of them to leave. Some cities and subgroups even practice forms of inherent social stratification among their own kind, such as a caste system or even indentured servitude by applying their own racial superiority inwards.

Vwulf DeMarcus
2014-07-15, 12:57 AM
Society A seems True Neutral or Neutral Good to me.

Society B seems Lawful Evil or Neutral Evil.

FidgetySquirrel
2014-07-15, 01:14 AM
A. Strikes me as LG, perhaps NG. Lawful doesn't have to mean written law, after all. It can apply to characters with strong personal codes. This society seems to have a strong, unwritten, societal code, which, if not lawful outright, is certainly not chaotic. They work actively toward bettering themselves and each other. Arguably they use generally good means to try to achieve a good end, which makes them solidly good in my book

B. Well, IIRC, racism is evil by RAW. However, if the worst they do is ostracizing and implementing indentured servitude, I could see LN over LE. Racially speaking, these people are jerks, but jerk=/=evil and evil=/=jerk. I'm willing to lean toward LN, here.

EDIT: I find this sort of thing fascinating, by the way. Please let me know if you do another one.

Nilehus
2014-07-15, 01:23 AM
Hm. Society A I'd peg at Lawful Neutral or True Neutral, for reasons I can't quite put into words.

Society B is definitely LN/borderline LE. Institutionalized and cultural oppression typically does not fall on the higher ends of the spectrum.

FidgetySquirrel
2014-07-15, 01:26 AM
Hm. Society A I'd peg at Lawful Neutral or True Neutral, for reasons I can't quite put into words.

Society B is definitely LN/borderline LE. Institutionalized and cultural oppression typically does not fall on the higher ends of the spectrum.Did I just summon Orcus?

On topic: It is rather difficult and thought-provoking, isn't it? Nothing like engaging my brain with a complex topic at 2:30 in the morning!

Nilehus
2014-07-15, 01:33 AM
Did I just summon Orcus?

On topic: It is rather difficult and thought-provoking, isn't it? Nothing like engaging my brain with a complex topic at 2:30 in the morning!

Nah, I can't just resist a topic with the words "Thought Experiment" in the title.

It is interesting. My reading of Society A made me think of them as a sort of hive-mind, in a way. Granted, there's no queen or such giving orders, and most likely no actual telepathic connection, but the wording of it just made me think hive-mind.

FidgetySquirrel
2014-07-15, 01:37 AM
Nah, I can't just resist a topic with the words "Thought Experiment" in the title.

It is interesting. My reading of Society A made me think of them as a sort of hive-mind, in a way. Granted, there's no queen or such giving orders, and most likely no actual telepathic connection, but the wording of it just made me think hive-mind.That's exactly what happened to me!

My reading of A had me thinking of an ideal interpretation of a Marxist society, something which I have no desire of getting into the nuts and bolts of for obvious reasons ('http://www.giantitp.com/forums/announcement.php?a=1).

Nilehus
2014-07-15, 01:52 AM
That was partially my thought, as well. It's probably best not to tick off the mods too much. I'm still waiting for the hammer to drop in the other thread.

Still, it's always interesting seeing three different people come up with four different interpretations of the same paragraph.

FidgetySquirrel
2014-07-15, 02:05 AM
That was partially my thought, as well. It's probably best not to tick off the mods too much. I'm still waiting for the hammer to drop in the other thread.

Still, it's always interesting seeing three different people come up with four different interpretations of the same paragraph.As long as things stay civil here, and there's no actual discussion about real-world politics, I think we're fine? Even in the other thread, I get the feeling the mods just find it too darn entertaining to stop the trainwreck.

That is the beauty of thought experiments, isn't it? People with different perspectives themselves have the potential to interpret even little things in vastly different ways. I hope this thread catches on, because eventually we'll probably have both societies having been assigned each alignment with a plausible explanation as to why. The human mind is a fascinating thing.

Sartharina
2014-07-15, 02:58 AM
Society A is Chaotic Evil, given that the only known race capable of functioning with that sort of government is Kender.

Society B is Neutral Good, leaning toward Chaotic - While the racism may make it look bad on the surface... this is fantasy, and there are real problems with the half-races being unable to function in society - namely, it's impossible for them to live long enough to learn enough about their culture to succeed in it.

Jeff the Green
2014-07-15, 03:29 AM
Society A is probably Lawful, but I don't really have enough information to say where they fall on the Good-Evil axis. I mean, it would certainly be consistent for them to sacrifice any outsiders to Agagogoth in exchange for him not eating their kidneys, but they could also be quite nice and give outsiders fruit baskets as parting gifts. Just because they're pro-in group doesn't make them good.

Society B is probably Evil, but I don't have enough information to say where they fall on the Lawful-Chaotic axis. Do they value individual freedom or conformity? Do they expect everyone to follow a code, or can people act on their whims?

Vitruviansquid
2014-07-15, 03:42 AM
Before looking at anyone else's answers:

A - Chaotic Neutral

This seems like a society that regards rules, hierarchies, laws as necessary evils rather than things that are helpful or powerful in themselves. This makes the society Chaotic to me. Of course, it's not *as* Chaotic as a society of total do-what-you-want anarchy, but then the latter is the extreme end of the Chaotic spectrum.

B - Lawful Evil

In contrast to society A, society B seeks to impose hierarchy between people inside and outside of it, making it Lawful. That the hierarchy is based on race, which is self-serving because it exalts the members of the society and denigrates all others, makes this society evil.

Malar
2014-07-15, 04:19 AM
I would say the population of A is mostly neutral lawfull. They dont have real laws but they have some other rules. Everyone is treated equally and neutral people behave good.

B would be Evil Neutral and Evil Chaotic.
They only think of themself that then genes are the best in the Universe and other humanoids dont have rights. I think they have at least laws, in such a big culture so most people are not random killing/betraying each other. But maybe there are some random murder or genocides. They are doing something for their own good, regardless of other people but most people arent betraying and stealing and murdering the whole time so they would evil neutral.

Jeff the Green
2014-07-15, 04:27 AM
If nothing else, this thread illustrates well why D&D alignment is not a useful tool.

Yes and no. On the one hand, I think applying alignments to societies is silly, and part of the reason there's disagreement is that the Law-Chaos axis isn't defined very precisely (and there wasn't a book dedicated to each like Evil and Good got). On the other hand, part of the reason we disagree is that the descriptions are incomplete.

Lord Raziere
2014-07-15, 04:31 AM
If nothing else, this thread illustrates well why D&D alignment is not a useful tool.

or better yet, illustrates why DnD Alignment is more like a Rorshach blot test for how one sees the world than an actual good measurement system. The answers say more about yourself than it does the society.

A: Is True Neutral. Not lawful enough to be Lawful neutral, not Chaotic enough to be chaotic neutral.

B: Lawful Evil. I personally think anything with both in built racism and classism, is pretty much evil and incredibly lawful about doing so.

what do these answers say about me? that is for you to figure out.

JusticeZero
2014-07-15, 05:48 AM
A is Lawful. Insufficient information for the other axis. It's small, so written laws are unimportant. You start writing laws down because you want to build conformity in the law in a place too far away to visit often.

I'd peg B as LE. The reasons have already been discussed.

The consistency of the alignment system is unimportant in this case. I'm a physicalist, so the only thing that matters is that the judgment is consistent and predictable.

Fire Lord Pi
2014-07-15, 07:28 AM
The first seems to be be somewhere in between neatural and lawful. I'd say it's probably a good society because it employs methods such as shaming as opposed to worser punishments.

The second sounds to be LN. Borderline evil, but racism and subjugation into indentured servitude are, as have been stated, minor evils (compared with things like sacrificing children).

As for alignment, it only works if everyone at you table has agreeing morals. I like the comparison to a blot test.

Arkanist
2014-07-15, 10:32 AM
Civilization B seems to be Lawful Evil, in a rare case where it isn't actual laws but instead the evil is institutionalized into the very social structure.

Civilization A may seem Good, but have you forgotten the evils of Communism?

draken50
2014-07-15, 11:18 AM
The first I'd say is Chaotic Neutral.

The lack of set laws and the societal behavior being set by whatever the social norms at the time seem more chaotic to me. There doesn't seem to be any real variance in the moral scale, basically "live and let live" which seems pretty neutral to me.

The second I'd say is Neutral. Though I do get the impression of lawfull, but the concept that "some" of the groups within the nation/empire/whatever implies that a fair amount are not as regimented within a caste system. I don't see any thing that would point evil. While they're are certainly evil people perpetuating the racism implied, evidently people are free to leave. Where the city actively engaged in finding and enslaving/exploiting those they find to be lesser races or the like, that would lean more evil, but unless the majority of the population maintained the elitist viewpoint I wouldn't go full evil.

Personally, I have a difficult time naming any nation either Good or Evil in most cases, their governmental powers on the other hand.... So I wouldn't call North Korea evil, but their regime, absolutely. If you're going by the regime, I would need to see specific deeds to define and even then it gets tough to say "[country] is evil/good]"

Though Sweden sounds pretty good, but hey, I haven't lived there sooooo....

MrNobody
2014-07-15, 11:58 AM
Ok, here's my thought on this very interesting topic.

Society A: Seems to be neutral good: enough laws to grant the existence of a structured society to make it lawful, enough personal freedom and lack of hierarchy to make it chaotic... it stays firmly in between.
It also tends to encourage good behaviour, so it seems tending to goodness.
That said, there are some question that can help better define the concept and (even totally) change the alignment:
It's a "small isolated village". Why is it isolated? This could be very important. If it is only a geographical situation (it's isolated because on a small far-from-the-shores island) it doesn't matter, otherwise there should be an ideological motivation for this isolation, with reflections on alignment. If it's a rebellion against certain law/societies it brings the city to chaos, if it's a research of purity it brings to good (and law a little bit). If the village is secluded because all the inhabitants have the idea "we parted from the world because it's full of stupid people and we are all the best", then this would bring a bit of evil in the alignment. Pride is the most serious of sins.
Major decisions are taken by the councils, but minor? This is important in the choice between law and chaos. what about minor things? a simple theft, a minor infraction... who decides? if there are judges committed to take daily care of this thing, the society it tending to lawful. If, otherwise, revenge it's accepted and everyone can personally take care of offenses without outer control, then it's totally chaotic. A (not "the") neutral way of resolving the situation could be having informal judges (the elders of every family) to take care of this minor problems even through personal revenge with the task of verifying things aren't pushed too far and of calling out a council only when things get serious.
There is no private property. What happens to those that want to keep something for themselves?The desire of owning goods is part of the human nature so, unless all the village is made of exalted VoP NPCs, every now and then someone should want not to share something. Maybe an house is burnt down by fire and the neighbour is entitle of hosting the now homeless family until the house is built again: the council states he has to temporally leave the house to the family. The neighbour refuses because the house has been assigned to his family many decades ago and claims it to be HIS house. What happens next? he gets scolded in public and declared "shameful" and the homelesses go to another familiy (neutral), he gets scolded in public and declared "shameful" and the outraged crowd is allowed to drag him out the house and give the keys to the homeless family (chaos) or does exist some kind of "police" that has the order of the council executed (Law)?

Society B Racism in D&D is not inherently evil: a lot of races, even those strongly tending to good, have heavy traces of racism in their background and even in their mechanics (dwarves and gnomes). An entire base class, the ranger, is built around the idea of [i'm highlighting a possible aspect of the favored enemy ability] hating somone for his race, but still in his description it says that evil rangers are rare.
Remember also that Corellon Larethian, the supergood elf god, is EXTREMELY racist aginst orcs and inspires his followers to do the same still being a bastion of goodness.

I see this society as heavy lawful but neutral on the evil-good axis. The respect of laws and social rules is the first thing. Every deviation, such as mixblooded babies, has to be eradicated. You say that this poor sons are led to leave: if the society were evil, mixblood sons should be killed as soon as they are born. A society that waits them to become adults and let them leave is not good, but neither evil.

And more. LE is tyranny, and one of the first weapon that tyranny unsheates, everywhere and everytime, is ignorance: an ignorant population is far easier to control then a well educated one.
Since you say that this society relies on art and knowledge i can't really imagine it as a tyranny, even if social hierarchy is based on how much one knows and there are "secrets" that are kept hidden from the lower layers of the population.
That said, i confirm my LN idea.

ReaderAt2046
2014-07-15, 02:44 PM
I would peg Society A as Chaotic Good and Society B as Lawful Evil.

Sartharina
2014-07-15, 03:00 PM
I would peg Society A as Chaotic Good and Society B as Lawful Evil.

Kender and Goblins are Chaotic Good, and Elves and dwarves are lawful evil. Got it!

White Blade
2014-07-15, 03:34 PM
Kender and Goblins are Chaotic Good, and Elves and dwarves are lawful evil. Got it!

If Goblins and Kender are amicably running their societies in isolation through social pressure and elves and dwarves are aloof and biased against other races, than yes. I see your argument though.

Society A is, in my mind, a very small village full of lawful good people. It functions on social boundaries, not on violence, and people pretty much operate on a family-esque, "Let's look out for one another" ethic. I suppose they might be neutral or evil, if they respond poorly towards outsiders, but I think they probably have a very strong moral compass to function with a society like the one they have.

Society B is mostly just... racist. Its hard to peg an alignment from, "Educated and racist" but I'd probably tag them at lawful evil, with plenty of room for movement based on their preferences.

FidgetySquirrel
2014-07-15, 03:38 PM
Kender and Goblins are Chaotic Good, and Elves and dwarves are lawful evil. Got it!I'd like to mention that there is arguably a difference between racism as an attitude, like in the case of elves and dwarves, and instituting racism as legal policy, as in the case of Society B. Elves don't like orcs, but they'll generally let them hang around if they're not doing the sort of thing that orcs are expected to do. They may even be well-treated by an elven community if they're good-natured and don't cause a lot of trouble. Society B(Elven Variant) would automatically ostracize any orc, possibly force them into servitude, and no amount of worth-proving would change that.

Mastikator
2014-07-15, 04:02 PM
A is lawful good, no formal rules, but there are unwritten rules that everyone obey and enforce and enjoy, people value justice and equality above all else and individualism is non-existent.

B is lawful evil.

AttilaTheGeek
2014-07-15, 04:52 PM
If nothing else, this thread illustrates well why D&D alignment is not a useful tool.

Yes, exactly. At the risk of turning this into an alignment fixes thread, I'd like to link an alignment fix that I think expands the nine traditional alignments to cover more realistic grey areas in an effective and meaningful way: Active and Passive Alignments (http://gm.sagotsky.com/?p=33), by this forum's very own Valadil (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/member.php?8803-valadil). In that system, each alignment component is split into one of two parts, active or passive. Active alignments are written with a capital letter and show that a character will go out of their way to promote that alignment. Passive alignments, on the other hand, are written with a lowercase letter and show that the character thinks or feels in accordance with that component without going out of their way to promote it. For example, Hayley Starshine's alignment might be cG (passive Chaotic, active Good) because she might believe that there should be fewer laws, but she doesn't go out of her way to break rules (passive Chaos) and she does go out of her way to help people (active Good).

Under that alignment system, I would call the first society passive Neutral, active Good. They don't like or dislike rules (Neutral), and they don't try to enforce the balance between Law and Chaos (passive Neutral). Not only do they also believe in equality (Good), they also go out of their way to encourage good behavior and, by the sound of it, help people in need (active Good). However, depending on someone's political beliefs, they could call it anywhere from nG to ce.

I would call the society actively Lawful and passively Evil, but they could also be called actively Lawful and actively Evil.

JusticeZero
2014-07-15, 05:55 PM
As an Alignment Physicalist, I do not think that the alignment system needs fixing. In any case, we don't have all that much to go on. Still, you don't need formal law writing for a community of less than a thousand people. There are actually a few organizations and cultural groups that function by capping their size accordingly and performing a planned mitosis when they get too big - when the population gets to a certain point, they pick out a few hundred people and send them away to form a new community somewhere else.

Winter_Wolf
2014-07-15, 08:13 PM
Both societies come across as LN to me. Sure racism is bad, but having lived in several openly racist and stratified societies personally, I can't in good conscious call them "evil". Society A on the other hand uses shaming as a way to enforce compliance and status quo. If anything I'd prefer to live in society B because it isn't trying to hide behind a veneer, which based on the OP description is what society A appears to be doing. Frankly it isn't that hard to operate in a society like B if you pick up a few tricks and can adapt and improvise, but society A haa a kind of quiet paranoia and desperation if you're not cleaving unto the accepted norm.

Libertad
2014-07-15, 09:22 PM
Guess what? Those two societies I did not make up.

Society A is the theoretical framework of traditional anarchism in how they imagine an ideal society to operate.

Society B is derived from a patchwork collection of "high elves" from popular campaign settings. Silvanesti elves from Dragonlance, the Complete Book of Elves from 2nd Edition, Gold Elves from Forgotten Realms, etc.

I understand that there are problems with assigning alignments to entire societies, or providing such a brief snapshot of both, but both groups in D&D are traditionally chaotic-aligned. In the case of "high elves," good even.

In spite of Society A not having a central authority or hierarchy, many of you (on these boards and elsewhere) placed them as a non-chaotic option, even though a popular interpretation of Lawfulness involves this.

My book-to-be specifically is called Death to Alignment! A set of variant rules options and changes to eliminate alignment as a game concept from Pathfinder while still retaining its more popular tropes (virtuous paladins, demonic hordes, etc). To that end I was planning on using this thought experiment (just the questions, not the responses) in it to show readers the shortcomings of alignment, both in the game and in applying real-world values.

JusticeZero
2014-07-15, 09:44 PM
I don't disagree with you. That said, i've definitely noted a couple of theoretical constructions for dealing with alignment issues. For instance, some of us have come down firmly into the camp of physicalism, and simply state that alignment is a black-and-white abstraction which need not necessarily link up to modern morality, and furthermore, acknowledges the existence of bad Good people and good Evil people. Others are consequentialists who agonize far more about how to measure alignment and have the most trouble with tags like "Always Evil". Usually this is somewhat tempered by archetypalistic assumptions of a dominant cultural structure, but this is always subject to issues of determining the values of morality in spite of vague and contradictory guidelines.

Also, I have always considered stereotypical Elven societies to have strong LE leanings on account of how they are always described as insulating themselves from problems and sneering at the lesser races. They only seem to be linked popularly to Chaos or Good because trees, a very poor justification which presumably ties back to the pastoralist leanings of the original source material. Additionally, a lot of classical anarchism has to rely on a strict set of rules to maintain the anarchism. The fact that you are talking about a society at all makes it hard to be chaotic.

Sartharina
2014-07-16, 01:15 AM
Society B is derived from a patchwork collection of "high elves" from popular campaign settings. Silvanesti elves from Dragonlance, the Complete Book of Elves from 2nd Edition, Gold Elves from Forgotten Realms, etc.Derived from, maybe, but missing several important details - such as the misconception that race is merely cosmetic in Fantasy worlds like it is in our worlds. Racism is justified in Fantasy worlds, because there are measurable, obvious differences physically, mentally, and capably between the assorted intelligent races. Such as elves having an entire human lifetime of experience before their even considered adults. You changed things by misattributing the reason for the racism.

Synar
2014-07-16, 09:04 AM
Derived from, maybe, but missing several important details - such as the misconception that race is merely cosmetic in Fantasy worlds like it is in our worlds. Racism is justified in Fantasy worlds, because there are measurable, obvious differences physically, mentally, and capably between the assorted intelligent races. Such as elves having an entire human lifetime of experience before their even considered adults. You changed things by misattributing the reason for the racism.

That is like saying oppressing people is only bad if you are less worthy than them, but if they are a bit less intelligent in average than you, then sure, treat them like cockroach. If you don't see the problem, well...

And if books said elfs are jolly loving tree-hugging chaotic good elitist racist oppressers, then those books are stupid. But most of the time those elements are not present at the same time, the elfs are actually evil, or they are not actually that much racist.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


To all the other people: Well, the first society would certainly be good if its way of functionning reposes on the fact that all of its members are good-hearted, enlightened, educated people that are ready to always freely do what is most beneficial to everyone. Congratz, this society achieved the dream of every utopia ever and every modern society. But if, say, its way of functionning rather reposes on shaming and ostracizing those that deviate from the norm, with mob justice (i.e. lynching)/elders justice, I could see arguments made to flag it as neutral or evil, or good, depending on the exact way things function and what is considered deviation and what is considered shaming and basically everything. There are not enough datas.
(I am ignoring that last post for obvious resons (http://rulesrulesrules), but even then since it only describe an utopia without the means to implement it, it is far too vague too get an alignement.)


(To some posters: And yes, shaming people that deviate from the norm rather than jailing them or publicly disembowelling them could be good ifwe are speaking about minor offenses with appropriate shaming, but get rapidly foolish if we are speaking of serial murders with scoldings, and rapidly oprresive lawful neutral/evil if we are speaking of ostracism for thinking/dressing/acting differently or refusing to do what the society expect you to do.)


(And no, letting mixed blood childs live until they reach adulthood and only then expelling them of the society rather than killing them at birth do not a good society make. It could even be more evil, since those childs did not suffer long.)

Sartharina
2014-07-16, 10:27 AM
That is like saying oppressing people is only bad if you are less worthy than them, but if they are a bit less intelligent in average than you, then sure, treat them like cockroach. If you don't see the problem, well...Because we totally give children and adolescents the same respect, civil rights, and opportunity to participate in our culture as we do adults. They're all dead before they can even get the Elven Culture's equivalent of a High School Diploma. On top of how wasteful, impulsive, and violent they tend to be.


(And no, letting mixed blood childs live until they reach adulthood and only then expelling them of the society rather than killing them at birth do not a good society make. It could even be more evil, since those childs did not suffer long.)Considering that said half-bloods are dead before they reach the age of majority, expelling them is the best thing to do - Let them go live their lives in a culture they have a chance of living long enough to understand enough to function in.

Lord Raziere
2014-07-16, 10:52 AM
Because we totally give children and adolescents the same respect, civil rights, and opportunity to participate in our culture as we do adults. They're all dead before they can even get the Elven Culture's equivalent of a High School Diploma. On top of how wasteful, impulsive, and violent they tend to be.

Considering that said half-bloods are dead before they reach the age of majority, expelling them is the best thing to do - Let them go live their lives in a culture they have a chance of living long enough to understand enough to function in.

yeah.....um...if they still in a medieval society like the rest of the world, they are probably not all the complex in comparison. sure they live longer, but that doesn't mean jack if your still using the same technology and social rules of lords, knights and kings. that and if they were really all that advanced, forget being isolated elitists, they'd have already conquered the world and either wiped everyone out or enslaved everyone else if they had the same birthrate as humanity, so either more elves die than other races to make up for the fact that an elf can churn out more elven young over their lifetime, or they only come rarely, either way it means that elven population would be about equal as everyone else's, and therefore only supports a certain level of complexity in society that is comparable to everyone else's no matter how long you live. 300 people in a village is 300 people in a village, no matter how long the life they live. because in order for the society to actually be more complex enough to take literally a hundred years to understand, it would have to be much more complex than our own, which according to our standards only takes twenty.

meaning elves either intentionally make other parts of their society needlessly complex for no reason, or the elders are just keeping the young adults from having a say in things for 80 years just to keep the status quo and the power they wield over them. either way, screw elven culture.

Synar
2014-07-16, 11:14 AM
Because we totally give children and adolescents the same respect, civil rights, and opportunity to participate in our culture as we do adults. They're all dead before they can even get the Elven Culture's equivalent of a High School Diploma. On top of how wasteful, impulsive, and violent they tend to be.

Considering that said half-bloods are dead before they reach the age of majority, expelling them is the best thing to do - Let them go live their lives in a culture they have a chance of living long enough to understand enough to function in.

So elves are super advanced then? How come they are still living with the same tech as everyone else? And are not actually better than the other? You also seem to forget that they mature more slowly, so other race adults are just as mature as elven adults. And to explain the fact that elves have still not taken over the world in most settings, you probably have to admit that they are slower to adapt and to learn - or just cut their livespans to something like three hundred years rather than ten thousand years or forever.

(And yes we treat those with IQs a bit under the average with the same respect than the rest of the population and, strangely, we even give them civil rights! Shocking, isn'it?)


"EDIT"P.S.:Super ninja'd.

EDIT:ANd yes we respect children and adolescents, or at least we should. And I was myself an adolescent technically two weeks ago, but I wasn't aware I had no rights to participate in "our culture". What an ignorant barbarian I was back then. But I'm glad reaching adulthood suddenly made me more intelligent, cultivated, and worthy of respect!


EDIT EDIT:And seriously, racism is not cool. I'm not sure why it even need to be spelled out.

Sartharina
2014-07-16, 12:13 PM
yeah.....um...if they still in a medieval society like the rest of the world, they are probably not all the complex in comparison. sure they live longer, but that doesn't mean jack if your still using the same technology and social rules of lords, knights and kings. that and if they were really all that advanced, forget being isolated elitists, they'd have already conquered the world and either wiped everyone out or enslaved everyone else if they had the same birthrate as humanity, so either more elves die than other races to make up for the fact that an elf can churn out more elven young over their lifetime, or they only come rarely, either way it means that elven population would be about equal as everyone else's, and therefore only supports a certain level of complexity in society that is comparable to everyone else's no matter how long you live. 300 people in a village is 300 people in a village, no matter how long the life they live. because in order for the society to actually be more complex enough to take literally a hundred years to understand, it would have to be much more complex than our own, which according to our standards only takes twenty.

meaning elves either intentionally make other parts of their society needlessly complex for no reason, or the elders are just keeping the young adults from having a say in things for 80 years just to keep the status quo and the power they wield over them. either way, screw elven culture.Except they DON'T live in a Medieval Culture. Sure, they're still Swords+Bows, but they also have strong magic and exotic construction and settlement designs. And 300 people in a village ISN'T 300 people in a village when it comes to social mobility within said village - Sorry, Mr. Human, you're going to die of old age before the young CEO of Elfcorp even considers going on his first marriage's honeymoon. You're not moving up in this social ladder because its full of immortal elves. Our own culture is having a problem with this, leading to mass unemployment of youth because all the jobs are still held/being taken by older people thanks to extending lifespans. Also, elves don't have the same birthrate as humanity unless they're trying to recover from a catastrophe. They hit a 'population cap' faster than humans, then practice more sophisticated contraceptive practices to regulate their population and ensure that it's low enough for everyone to have the freedom to live the life they want their way, without wasting too many resources (And not forcing their women to endure years of pregnancy and infant care). They get to be forever young.

And why would Chaotic Good But Condescending Elves want to enslave others? That would involve infringing on other's culture's rights to exist and express themselves. Elves are individualistic, and if you feel wronged by elven culture, you're free to move and start your own with blackjack and hookers. They merely restrict how you can interact with them, not hold you hostage to their laws.


So elves are super advanced then? How come they are still living with the same tech as everyone else? And are not actually better than the other? You also seem to forget that they mature more slowly, so other race adults are just as mature as elven adults. And to explain the fact that elves have still not taken over the world in most settings, you probably have to admit that they are slower to adapt and to learn - or just cut their livespans to something like three hundred years rather than ten thousand years or forever.They don't have the same drive to constantly push technology toward pollution and automation. Even then, their crafts are the most advanced in the world - even Dwarves respect elves for the sophistication of their craftsmanship. They don't really mature more slowly - they hit physical and mental maturity at 20, and then spend the next 80 adapting to and learning their culture (Just as humans hit physical and mental maturity between 14 and 17, then spend until 21-24 adjusting to culture). They don't 'take over the world' because they have a high cultural inertia, and they're stewards, not lords, of the world. And, they love their individualistic freedoms too much to 'take over the world', because that level of organization requires a Lawful mindset, as well as an Evil streak to have the will to do what's necessary to drive out and crush other cultures. Elves instead have a "We have an isolated and elitist culture that works for us and is designed for our long lifespans. We tolerate you as guests and tourists, but if you don't like it... there's a whole world out there for you to live the way YOU want."


(And yes we treat those with IQs a bit under the average with the same respect than the rest of the population and, strangely, we even give them civil rights! Shocking, isn'it?)IQ is meaningless. Have you seen how we treat aspies and others on the autism spectrum, even on this forum at times? (Such as comparing them to 3.5 munchkins)


"EDIT"P.S.:Super ninja'd.

EDIT:ANd yes we respect children and adolescents, or at least we should. And I was myself an adolescent technically two weeks ago, but I wasn't aware I had no rights to participate in "our culture". What an ignorant barbarian I was back then. But I'm glad reaching adulthood suddenly made me more intelligent, cultivated, and worthy of respect![/QUOTE]Tell me again what offices you could hold, what jobs you were able to work without government age-related regulations, what you could do with your free time, etc.

Where I'm from, people under the age of Majority do not have an official say in political action (Cannot vote), cannot own property (It belongs to their parents instead), have extremely curtailed usage of the roads and services, frequently face after-dark curfews for driving, cannot engage in or enjoy sexual entertainment, are required to spend extensive time in government-run institutions, face extensive restrictions on what services and goods they can purchase, and some places require they have an older chaperone just to visit.

Libertad
2014-07-16, 12:26 PM
Just a quick note, Society B elves are racist even towards their own variant elven subraces. And humans and dwarves. The Silvanesti and Sun Elves aren't just prejudiced against evil-aligned monster folk.

White Blade
2014-07-16, 01:15 PM
Where I'm from, people under the age of Majority do not have an official say in political action (Cannot vote), cannot own property (It belongs to their parents instead), have extremely curtailed usage of the roads and services, frequently face after-dark curfews for driving, cannot engage in or enjoy sexual entertainment, are required to spend extensive time in government-run institutions, face extensive restrictions on what services and goods they can purchase, and some places require they have an older chaperone just to visit.

Where do you come from that children can't own property? In America, at least, if you buy stuff, its yours, even if you are a minor. Extensive inheritances are usually overseen by parents, but any child who works a job is (legally) able to spend that way in anyway he so chooses (provided, of course, that he isn't prohibited from by the product by law.)

Sartharina
2014-07-16, 01:17 PM
Where do you come from that children can't own property? In America, at least, if you buy stuff, its yours, even if you are a minor. Extensive inheritances are usually overseen by parents, but any child who works a job is (legally) able to spend that way in anyway he so chooses (provided, of course, that he isn't prohibited from by the product by law.)I've been informed otherwise by my state government, especially when it comes to vehicles.

White Blade
2014-07-16, 02:02 PM
I've been informed otherwise by my state government, especially when it comes to vehicles.

Wiggy. I suppose I never made a major purchase while underage.

Sartharina
2014-07-16, 02:09 PM
Actually, I'm not so much certain that it's Minors can't own property as much as, outside of extreme cases, guardians have the right to take that property.

But still - minors don't have the same rights, respect, and responsibilities as legal adults. Also - how often have people been dismissed as being "Immature"?

Also - Any form of oppression that can be defeated simply by walking away and making your own culture (Blackjack and hookers optional) can't really be described as Evil, IMO. Let the prissy elves stick to themselves and rot in their ivory towers if they want. Unless you want to play Dominoes with said towers. It's not like they can stop you!

Lord Raziere
2014-07-17, 02:25 AM
Except they DON'T live in a Medieval Culture. Sure, they're still Swords+Bows, but they also have strong magic and exotic construction and settlement designs. And 300 people in a village ISN'T 300 people in a village when it comes to social mobility within said village - Sorry, Mr. Human, you're going to die of old age before the young CEO of Elfcorp even considers going on his first marriage's honeymoon. You're not moving up in this social ladder because its full of immortal elves. Our own culture is having a problem with this, leading to mass unemployment of youth because all the jobs are still held/being taken by older people thanks to extending lifespans. Also, elves don't have the same birthrate as humanity unless they're trying to recover from a catastrophe. They hit a 'population cap' faster than humans, then practice more sophisticated contraceptive practices to regulate their population and ensure that it's low enough for everyone to have the freedom to live the life they want their way, without wasting too many resources (And not forcing their women to endure years of pregnancy and infant care). They get to be forever young.

And why would Chaotic Good But Condescending Elves want to enslave others? That would involve infringing on other's culture's rights to exist and express themselves. Elves are individualistic, and if you feel wronged by elven culture, you're free to move and start your own with blackjack and hookers. They merely restrict how you can interact with them, not hold you hostage to their laws.

They don't have the same drive to constantly push technology toward pollution and automation. Even then, their crafts are the most advanced in the world - even Dwarves respect elves for the sophistication of their craftsmanship. They don't really mature more slowly - they hit physical and mental maturity at 20, and then spend the next 80 adapting to and learning their culture (Just as humans hit physical and mental maturity between 14 and 17, then spend until 21-24 adjusting to culture). They don't 'take over the world' because they have a high cultural inertia, and they're stewards, not lords, of the world. And, they love their individualistic freedoms too much to 'take over the world', because that level of organization requires a Lawful mindset, as well as an Evil streak to have the will to do what's necessary to drive out and crush other cultures. Elves instead have a "We have an isolated and elitist culture that works for us and is designed for our long lifespans. We tolerate you as guests and tourists, but if you don't like it... there's a whole world out there for you to live the way YOU want."

IQ is meaningless. Have you seen how we treat aspies and others on the autism spectrum, even on this forum at times? (Such as comparing them to 3.5 munchkins)


eh, sounds more like Chaotic or True Neutral to me. "we live the way we want in isolation and elitism, you can live however you want somewhere else, don't bother us" if the elves were really good, they'd be more interested in helping others. I mean, they're supposedly chaotic good, yet I never hear of what they actually DO to earn the "GOOD" part of it, this sounds Chaotic yes, but what do they do to help people, to make things better, what makes them better than a bunch of isolationists who don't care about the rest of the world?

Sartharina
2014-07-17, 03:21 AM
And for all the concerns about "If elves are so superior, why don't they take over the world?" - The self-evident answer is "They don't want to" - Seriously, how do you get "Megalomaniacal World-domineering expansionist tyrants" out of "Reclusive isolationists trying to make themselves look good through trivial pursuits and being the prettiest princesses"?

And even if they do breed as fast as humans (Instead of pulling out because none of them really want to go through the life-ruining/altering hassle of raising children) and are immortal, they don't acquire any significant numbers because... seriously, play any game with elves in them. Warlords, Warcraft, Dwarf Fortress, etc. A common theme is "Elves keel over dead en mass if you glare at them menacingly enough, or sneeze in their general direction." They'd rather continue living lives of luxury and fop/sophistication than engage in anything actually dangerous, barbaric, or risky.


eh, sounds more like Chaotic or True Neutral to me. "we live the way we want in isolation and elitism, you can live however you want somewhere else, don't bother us" if the elves were really good, they'd be more interested in helping others. I mean, they're supposedly chaotic good, yet I never hear of what they actually DO to earn the "GOOD" part of it, this sounds Chaotic yes, but what do they do to help people, to make things better, what makes them better than a bunch of isolationists who don't care about the rest of the world?

They help each other. And, these specific elves are the "Jerk" Elves of the settings (Grey/Gold/Sun/Silvanesti, which are at most neutral.) The more benign elves, in addition to being Excellent to each other, are also Excellent to visitors and neighbors. They can come across as condescending though because others aren't as skilled or experienced or wise in the matters of being Excellent to others (Which often extends to animals as well - they don't see nonsapience as invalidating Right to Life). If high elves AREN'T being excellent to someone, it's usually because that someone was bogus to someone else, needs the help because they were bogus to someone else, or are intending to use the help to be bogus to someone else.

The difference between High Elves and Jerk Elves is that High Elves recognize that everyone else in the world is a little bit bogus, but do their best to be excellent to them anyway, to the extent that they can without themselves being bogus to others. They tend to get hated because people are bogus and accuse them of being "Too Perfect", as though excess excellence is a flaw: probably out of jealousy and their own myopias. Jerk Elves decide that they shouldn't be excellent to anyone who's bogus to others, and fail to realize that it makes them bogus to everyone else.

illyahr
2014-07-17, 12:12 PM
A couple things I've noticed that I'd just like to comment on. Elves do not reach maturity at 20, they are considered young until they are over 110. Half-Elves reach maturity at 20 and humans reach maturity at age 15, as per SRD (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/description.htm). An elf is still basically a teenager until they are over 100.

Also, elves have a much lower conception/birth rate than humans do. Even if they wanted to conquer, they could not maintain their numbers to hold anything. In the time it takes one elf to reach maturity, a small group of humans have built up enough to start their own village. Also, lets not forget that other races, such as orcs, reproduce even quicker than that. While the elves are technically more "advanced" than the other races, they would lose by sheer attrition.

My $.02 anyway.

As for the original post: without more information, I would say A is N/N or L/N since everyone basically functions on an honor system (lawful) but there isn't really anything to discourage or punish deviant behavior.

B has a very strict civil code that everyone is required to follow (lawful) and discrimination is not only expected, it is written into the code itself (evil) so I would say L/E for B.

Beleriphon
2014-07-17, 12:52 PM
Wiggy. I suppose I never made a major purchase while underage.

It has less to do with purchasing and more to do with contracts for services/goods. The big one is nobody in their right mind will give a minor a contract for non-essential services because its basically unenforcable, which basically comes down to a minor not being able to get a loan. If they have enough money to outright purchase a car then there are few reason it can't be done other than not having a driver's license.

ddude987
2014-07-17, 01:00 PM
My immediate thoughts were

A: Neutral Good

Reasoning: They may lean towards the lawful side of the spectrum, however they are not dedicated to following laws. Their system of "laws" is more from a societal upbringing than an enforced system of structure. I would say they are good because the society has everyone of them at its best interest. The foundation of their society is good hearted, looking out and caring for everyone in the community.

B: Neutral Neutral

Reasoning: They follow no strict code or laws (as far as I can tell from reading) making them neutral. On the other spectrum, they are neutral, leaning towards gently towards evil. While racism and similar breed evil and corruption, it is balanced by the societies want to improve the community through art, music, and knowledge.

Sartharina
2014-07-17, 01:51 PM
A couple things I've noticed that I'd just like to comment on. Elves do not reach maturity at 20, they are considered young until they are over 110. Half-Elves reach maturity at 20 and humans reach maturity at age 15, as per SRD (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/description.htm). An elf is still basically a teenager until they are over 100.On the contrary, Races of the Wild explicitly states that Elves reach physical maturity at 20, and the next 100 years are cultural adaptation. Elves only go on adventure after they hit 100 because by then, they've lived long enough to feel ready for the world.

Crazysaneman
2014-07-17, 01:55 PM
Society A
Sounds almost like Ten-Towns from Forgotten Realms. I would set their alignment as LN.
Society B
Sounds EXACTLY like Thay from Forgotten Realms. I would set their alignment at LE.


If you want any more information than that let me know and I will go into depth.

Lord Raziere
2014-07-17, 04:31 PM
And for all the concerns about "If elves are so superior, why don't they take over the world?" - The self-evident answer is "They don't want to" - Seriously, how do you get "Megalomaniacal World-domineering expansionist tyrants" out of "Reclusive isolationists trying to make themselves look good through trivial pursuits and being the prettiest princesses"?

And even if they do breed as fast as humans (Instead of pulling out because none of them really want to go through the life-ruining/altering hassle of raising children) and are immortal, they don't acquire any significant numbers because... seriously, play any game with elves in them. Warlords, Warcraft, Dwarf Fortress, etc. A common theme is "Elves keel over dead en mass if you glare at them menacingly enough, or sneeze in their general direction." They'd rather continue living lives of luxury and fop/sophistication than engage in anything actually dangerous, barbaric, or risky.



They help each other. And, these specific elves are the "Jerk" Elves of the settings (Grey/Gold/Sun/Silvanesti, which are at most neutral.) The more benign elves, in addition to being Excellent to each other, are also Excellent to visitors and neighbors. They can come across as condescending though because others aren't as skilled or experienced or wise in the matters of being Excellent to others (Which often extends to animals as well - they don't see nonsapience as invalidating Right to Life). If high elves AREN'T being excellent to someone, it's usually because that someone was bogus to someone else, needs the help because they were bogus to someone else, or are intending to use the help to be bogus to someone else.

The difference between High Elves and Jerk Elves is that High Elves recognize that everyone else in the world is a little bit bogus, but do their best to be excellent to them anyway, to the extent that they can without themselves being bogus to others. They tend to get hated because people are bogus and accuse them of being "Too Perfect", as though excess excellence is a flaw: probably out of jealousy and their own myopias. Jerk Elves decide that they shouldn't be excellent to anyone who's bogus to others, and fail to realize that it makes them bogus to everyone else.

What. I....don't even get what your saying out of those last two paragraphs, could you say it in a way that is understandable? Seriously.

As for the first two paragraphs: because when you get a society of magically superior people who believe they are also culturally superior, doesn't want to have other races in their society and generally think the world outside doesn't look as aesthetically pleasing and as a bunch of children that don't how to do anything right, what you either get is....isolationist pricks who say "screw you, we don't help outsiders" or imperialist "we need to teach you the error of your ways outsider, by conquering you!"

and keep in mind- Japan were isolationist for like 200 years, but then turned imperialist 90 years after that, the USA were isolationist in both World Wars before they started dishing out their militaries, and I wouldn't be surprised if Britain had some degree of isolationism because of its island status in Europe before it started its imperial conquest that took over what, 1/4 of the world? and if I recall correctly, the Roman Empire started out as a Greek colony that didn't want to be ruled by the Greeks anymore, so there is one point where it was just a bunch of guys going "we want to be left alone!"

or, there is China, you want isolationist, just look at its Great Wall. you want imperialist, just remember that the person who made China united was a ruthless conqueror who also invented legalism. history is full of examples of isolationism and imperialism going hand in hand in some way, they're may be opposite actions, but they come from the same response to outsiders, and the same viewpoint: "our culture is better than everyone else's". sure, they may be isolationist NOW, but its not hard to figure out how that stance may be changed into something far more dangerous. when you've always lived your life on top of a hill out of reach, everything else starts looking like insignificant toys and maps, while your own town looks so much more awesome, after all if they were awesome to, they'd also be on hills, which they aren't so screw them, and even if they were on hills, our hill is clearly the highest of all hills.

cause when you start being an elitist jerk, its hard to stop, and eventually you come up with more and more reasons why your better than everyone else, and why those guys over there aren't nearly as awesome as you and should obey you because your so awesome and so on and so forth. cause when you start getting too focused on your own awesome and don't listen to other people, thats when you start becoming an uncaring jerk, and isolationists who think their culture is the best thing in the world pretty much are people going "I'll live alone and call myself awesome all the time for not associating with those losers" and then it creates a feedback loop where your constantly going that your awesome with no one else to say otherwise, your own ego growing bigger and bigger as time goes on without anyone to criticize you, so you you assume that your even more awesome because you've gone on longer without getting any criticism.

notice how peace only comes from people trading and sharing cultural values with one another instead of shutting them out. understanding and interacting with others is an inherent requirement for living peacefully with them, how do you understand anyone when your isolated and not interacting with anyone, looking down upon them and saying that everything you do is sooooo great, while not sharing a scrap of your "greatness" to others? a recipe for conflict is all that is.

illyahr
2014-07-18, 10:18 AM
On the contrary, Races of the Wild explicitly states that Elves reach physical maturity at 20, and the next 100 years are cultural adaptation. Elves only go on adventure after they hit 100 because by then, they've lived long enough to feel ready for the world.

Physical maturity vs. full maturity. Humans do very little physical maturing after the age of ~15 but are not emotionally mature until late 20's, which seems to be the same thing you describe. Let's just chalk it up to a discrepancy between publications.

Sartharina
2014-07-18, 10:36 AM
Physical maturity vs. full maturity. Humans do very little physical maturing after the age of ~15 but are not emotionally mature until late 20's, which seems to be the same thing you describe. Let's just chalk it up to a discrepancy between publications."Emotional maturity" is more a function of the complexity of their society and how much it shelters its youth.

Stellar_Magic
2014-07-20, 11:26 PM
Alignments... always fun to discuss. The thing is they're generalities meant to be a rough guide, not a definite set of rules. Generally, I don't particularly like the twin axis approach, but I can see it as being useful for most things.

Law vs. Chaos
I prefer to define this as structure vs. freedom. Lawful cultures and societies are those with definite and defined rules: good examples of the most extreme form of this would be Medieval Feudalism, Indian Caste Society, Planned Societies, Command Economies, and most honor-shame cultures like those seen in Asia.

Chaotic cultures and societies are those with the most upward mobility and personal freedom. At the most extreme end of this we have: Anarchy, Direct Democracy, and should at least have some level of Meritocracy in place or another avenue of advancement (even if it's by chronic backstabbing).

Good vs. Evil
Is more complex then it seems. In most cases I think the only way you can get a society that classes as 'good' is if you go by their ideals more then their actual behavior. Evil behavior, however is all to readily apparent.

Good societies strive to be accepting of others, compassionate to those in need, and opposed to violence whenever possible. They will try to do the right thing, even when it's hard... or at least they should. This doesn't mean that they're always nice, personable, or likable.

Evil societies will use any tool to achieve their aims, including violence, torture, rape, and murder. This isn't to say that neutral societies can not indulge in those tendencies... they can, and all to often do, but an evil society elevates those that commit those acts, while a good society may turn against those that commit such acts. A neutral society simply will not care.

I personally think of the Good - Evil axis as basically being defined this way.

Good = Moral, characters and societies have their conception of right and wrong and attempt to do what is right when possible. Exact definitions may vary somewhat.
Neutral = Amoral, characters and societies have their conception of right and wrong, but do not usually act on it instead they focus on the situation at the time and do what they see as best for their interests.
Evil = Immoral, characters and societies that willfully ignore the conception of right and wrong or intentionally do wrong. Power and control become primary instruments of the society, either through social structures (Lawful Evil), fear (Neutral Evil), or force (Chaotic Evil).

Generally almost all real societies tend to be Neutral... With only really rare standouts being Good or Evil.

Libertad
2014-07-24, 06:51 PM
In other news, I finished writing my 3rd Party Pathfinder work, Death to Alignment!

To all the respondents, thank you for all your help.

You can click my extended signature to be taken to my social media profiles, which have a link to it, or you can search for it on Paizo's webstore and soon Drive-Thru RPG, RPGNow, and D20 Pathfinder SRD.

Jeff the Green
2014-07-27, 12:30 AM
"Emotional maturity" is more a function of the complexity of their society and how much it shelters its youth.

No, it's not. There are stark, culture-independent between the brains of an 18-year old and a 25-year old.

And in America, at least, children have essentially the same rights as adults with the exception of usually being under guardianship and voting/running for office (cf. Tinker v. Des Moines School District). States restrict driving privileges, not rights, to those who can demonstrate their ability to handle a vehicle, and we have un rebuttable presumptions that someone can't. Blindness, severe seizure disorders, and narcolepsy also fall under that presumption. There's also an argument (which I find quite persuasive) that the rights we do restrict to minors shouldn't be. Children and teens arguably have more of an investment in the future state of the world than adults do, and it's not like they could vote more mindlessly than many adults do.

Moreover, I find the argument that half-orcs should be treated as children really disturbing. The average half-orc has an Intelligence of 8 or 9. Assuming Intelligence and IQ are roughly comparable, this would put them at an IQ of between 90 and 95. Even if we take a race with +2 Intelligence as a baseline, that's an IQ of 80-85. The cut off for mental retardation is 70. And we don't even prevent people with mild mental retardation from voting; most states require a finding of non copos mentis, which would be much, much lower (or if they suffer from some other mental illness that prevents them from comprehending the significance of voting).

Basically if you want to say half-orcs should be discriminated against based on their Intelligence, you are arguing (hopefully unintentionally) that 25% of the real-life population should be discriminated against.

Sartharina
2014-07-27, 12:47 AM
No, it's not. There are stark, culture-independent between the brains of an 18-year old and a 25-year old.

And in America, at least, children have essentially the same rights as adults with the exception of usually being under guardianship and voting/running for office (cf. Tinker v. Des Moines School District). States restrict driving privileges, not rights, to those who can demonstrate their ability to handle a vehicle, and we have un rebuttable presumptions that someone can't. Blindness, severe seizure disorders, and narcolepsy also fall under that presumption. There's also an argument (which I find quite persuasive) that the rights we do restrict to minors shouldn't be. Children and teens arguably have more of an investment in the future state of the world than adults do, and it's not like they could vote more mindlessly than many adults do.

Moreover, I find the argument that half-orcs should be treated as children really disturbing. The average half-orc has an Intelligence of 8 or 9. Assuming Intelligence and IQ are roughly comparable, this would put them at an IQ of between 90 and 95. Even if we take a race with +2 Intelligence as a baseline, that's an IQ of 80-85. The cut off for mental retardation is 70. And we don't even prevent people with mild mental retardation from voting; most states require a finding of non copos mentis, which would be much, much lower (or if they suffer from some other mental illness that prevents them from comprehending the significance of voting).

Basically if you want to say half-orcs should be discriminated against based on their Intelligence, you are arguing (hopefully unintentionally) that 25% of the real-life population should be discriminated against.Not their intelligence - their temporal nature. They do not have the foresight or hindsight or life experiences an elf has - An elf has lived a full lifetime before it's even considered an adult. A human needs years of study to see how event A had an impact on Event b hundreds of years later, while Elves lived through that.

Non-elves are too short-sighted and short-lived to fit into Elven Society (Which requires making investments that take centuries to mature, instead of mere decades. Most humans do not have quite the compassion for their great-great grandchildren that they will make investments for them that will do nothing but cost them and their children. Likewise, those great-great granchildren will lack the respect for the investment they made so many generations ago - and the ones who's great-great grandparents didn't make those investments will be yelling "Check your privilege!" to those who's did, and screaming about how unfair the world is to them). So elves humor, but do not readily and blanketly incorporate non-elves into their culture.

Mastikator
2014-07-28, 07:09 AM
Because we totally give children and adolescents the same respect, civil rights, and opportunity to participate in our culture as we do adults. They're all dead before they can even get the Elven Culture's equivalent of a High School Diploma. On top of how wasteful, impulsive, and violent they tend to be.


Intellect and maturity are two different things. You can't compare an entire race of self sufficient people to children of another race just because they happen to have lower intelligence or more primitive culture, it's not a valid comparison.

And people don't have that long term memory either, we live for almost a century and yet most people can hardly remember what their favorite political party promised them a few months back, we don't remember things for decades, few have the foresight to see what the consequences of their actions will be a few years down the line even with decades of years of experience. There's no reason to think an elf (who isn't mentally superior to a human in any meaningful way) would be able to take benefit of centuries of experience that humans can't even take from a few decades.

Sartharina
2014-07-28, 10:14 AM
Intellect and maturity are two different things. You can't compare an entire race of self sufficient people to children of another race just because they happen to have lower intelligence or more primitive culture, it's not a valid comparison.

And people don't have that long term memory either, we live for almost a century and yet most people can hardly remember what their favorite political party promised them a few months back, we don't remember things for decades, few have the foresight to see what the consequences of their actions will be a few years down the line even with decades of years of experience. There's no reason to think an elf (who isn't mentally superior to a human in any meaningful way) would be able to take benefit of centuries of experience that humans can't even take from a few decades.Would an Elf CEO ever want to hire a human as anything more than a McJobber? It's very unlikely they'll have the 20 years of experience needed for any entry-level skilled-labor position.