Tellar

Planet

Tellar is a warm, terrestrial world about half the size of Terra. It has few mountain ranges and deserts with most of the land covered by either swamps or plains. Although fifty percent of Tellar's surface is covered by water, there are only two medium oceans. The rest of the water is located in the numerous fresh water lakes and streams that dot the surface.

Race

The inhabitants of Tellar seem to have acquired an unspoken stigma from other worlds in the Federation. Such phrases as 'stubborn as a Tellarite' or 'pig-snouted argumenter' have often been used to describe Tellar's inhabitants. Those who look beyond the surface aspects of the Tellarite race, however, have found that they possess noble and praiseworthy attributes as well.

Being argumentative is natural to a Tellarite and they can not understand why other intelligent races do not enjoy it as much as they do. Other races take offense while arguing with Tellarites because Tellarites are adept at finding the weak point in their opponent's arguments, thus showing that their point of view is the soundest.

Tellarites are very honorable beings, but few can appreciate their honor. This honor stems from a respect for truth, but only a truth that can be defended in open debate. A Tellarite believes that truth is one side or being who argues his point better. A Tellarite will always carry out his promise, but he must be nailed down on every detail, as Tellarites have a talent for finding loopholes in almost every agreement. Outright deceit is one of the few taboos in Tellarite society. Although Tellarites never
lie, they only tell their own form of the truth.

Tellarite scientific endeavors are performed with a dedication few other races can match. This dedication sometimes borders on the obsessive as some Tellarite scientists have been known to immolate themselves after a particularly disappointing failure. Although not understood by other races in the Federation, this attitude has helped the Tellarite race to expand the limits of Federation knowledge.

Even today, few outsiders know much about Tellarite society. Family groups are rarely seen in public with females and children normally kept secluded in family compounds. Only rarely do Tellarite workers and merchants permit their family members to leave their home planet and accompany them into space. Tellarites are very protective of their privacy as well. Armed family retainers make no bones about keeping idle curiosity seekers at a distance. Tellarites are also very protective of their females and young. This sense of protectiveness seems to stem from some unusually strong ancestral urge to keep all predators away from the herd. As Tellarite society continues to open up to contact with other races, this instinctive behavior may lessen.

History

Tellarites descended from herd animals that roamed the wide, expansive, sun-baked plains of Tellar. The scarcity of water and food forced these bipedal omnivorous beings to develop cunning ways of survival which eventually evolved into real intelligence. Over the millennia, the leader of the Tellarites often had to defend his position, not by trial of strength as with most herd animals, but by the expression of his intellect through keen debate. Known to last for several days, tests of intelligence ended when one participant accepted his opponent's reasoning, thereby allowing the herd to follow the victor.

Tellarites achieved a unified planetary government about the same time as the first Terran-Alpha Centauran contact. As they prefer to argue out their differences, Tellarites have experienced few wars. Only rarely do they come to blows, and murder is almost unknown on Tellar. Modern medicine and treatment usually cures those mentally disturbed inhabitants who have killed another Tellarite in anger. When Treatment fails, Tellarites are usually send to some off-planet institution where they are given continued treatment and kept outside of normal society.

Place in the Federation

Ruling Mothers of Tellar encourage the race to devote themselves to productive pursuits. Tellarite firms that construct life support systems are very prosperous, as Tellar-designed components are typically more reliable and easier to operate than other manufacturers' units. Tellar development of ato-elemental microcircuitry, which is tough enough to be installed in warp engines, has made Tellar the leader in engineering control mechanisms throughout the Federation. Tellarite corporations manufactured most of the control circuitry in Starfleet's New Boston Yards Shipyard. Tellarite research into tissue regeneration and microlaser surgery has revolutionized Federation medicine over the past several decades. Research done by many leading Tellarite labs have made drug therapy treatments obsolete and cryothermic treatment safer and more effective than many other forms of treatment.

Although nearly every Federation world has a Tellarite community on it, many Tellarites still fear that too much contact with outsiders will disintegrate their social structure. This fear, however, is tempered by the value of ideas and technology offered by other races. This dilemma has been the Tellarite's most popular subject for argument for the last century. Membership in the Federation has advanced Tellarite knowledge, but has also introduced 'dangerous' concepts such as equality of the sexes.

There has been dissent among some Tellarite factions within the government concerning their future in the Federation. Some extremists have begun to splinter cultures of their own, ignoring the existence of the Federation entirely, and settling on distant planets. The ruling Mothers of Tellar have tried in vain to come to terms with these renegades, and the Tellarites will not allow other races to interfere with what they consider to be an internal matter.

Throughout the Federation, Tellarite participation is increasing. Tellarites have integrated into multi-racial crews on some of the finest research vessels and military starships in the Federation. Their instinct to protect their family has decreased over the years to the point where some Tellarite women have begun training and indeed hold various duties away from the family compounds and enclaves, including Starfleet itself. The general opinion in Tellarite society is that change is, indeed, inevitable.

Although some Tellarites wish that they had never joined the Federation, most realize that secession from the Federation would inevitably mean the destruction of Tellarite society. Without the unity and the protection of the Federation behind it, the Tellarite sphere of influence would soon be overrun by independents with no respect for the rights of Tellarites. There is little doubt that the Tellarites will continue to be a dependable and efficient member of the Federation, contributing more than most to it's development. In fact, some Tellarites are as proud of the Federation as they are of their own homeworld.


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