So: should we take the hypothetical offer from the whimsical deity I imagined two weeks ago?
I think the rough consensus of the comment section is a qualified, reluctant “no,” which isn’t terribly surprising. Even if we make a lot of nice assumptions in our own favour (Pokémon are able to slot relatively cleanly into existing ecosystems without causing a mass extinction; our nerd-knowledge of Pokémon allows us to help smooth the transition; many people can learn fairly quickly to be competent trainers), I think it’s pretty clear that this scenario would be a major global disruption. I also think it’s probably fair to say that my particular style of bull$#!t probably attracts a fairly analytically inclined type of person who would (like me) find it interesting to think about the ways a more “realistic” setting would break down a lot of Pokémon’s utopian assumptions. It is, at the very least, an obviously risky proposal. That being the case, it seems only fair that I attempt to argue the case for “yes.”
I’d say there’s roughly two main categories of objections, with some overlap between the two:
- Real Pokémon would be dangerously destructive to both humans and the environment.
- Real Pokémon would be exploited by humans, for nefarious ends or simply out of greed.
If we want to say yes, I think we have to make the argument that either these things wouldn’t happen (or at least that we’d be able to mitigate them), or that, to the extent they did happen, the benefits (smol frens who are magic) would outweigh them.Continue reading “Discussion Roundup: Should We Make Pokémon Real?”