TAL: I told you we're not going to get caught. If someone had seen us, they would've reported it by now.
KIM: I'm violating about half a dozen regulations by just being in this room. And what we did earlier? I don't know if Starfleet even has a regulation for that.
TAL: What are you saying? Making love is a crime in your culture?
KIM: Yes! No. What I'm saying is, it's a breach of protocol.
TAL: How romantic.
KIM: The Captain instructed all away teams. No personal interaction with the Varro crew. I violated a direct order.
TAL: Come back to bed. That's an order.
I don't understand why this is a problem. Commander Riker used to do this all the time on the enterprise:
- In Angel One, Riker sleeps with Mistress Beata
- In First Contact (TNG episode), Riker sleeps with a Malcorian Nurse, which is an obvious Prime Directive violation.
The best citation I can find is this, from the Memory Alpha Sexuality article:
In the 24th century, Starfleet personnel apparently required permission from a CMO and their commanding officers to engage in sexual relations with members of alien species, although this formality was only shown being observed once on board USS Voyager. (VOY: "Prophecy") Nevertheless, its breach was the basis for a reprimand being entered into Harry Kim's permanent record. When Kathryn Janeway informed Kim of the reprimand, she indicated that the regulations on inter-species sexual contact were "three centimeters thick." (VOY: "The Disease")
So, I have a few theories:
- Riker asked for permission most of the time (though, clearly not in the case of the Malcorian nurse)
- The rules changed between TNG and VOY
- Picard chose not to enforce the rules
- The rules were different for higher ranking officers
- The rules only applied to poorly known species - the Federation had been studying the Malcorians for awhile
Are any of those theories correct? What are the rules exactly, and how did Harry Kim break them?
To clarify, the reason I'm asking the question at all is because throughout the episode, they keep saying "violated regulations", another quote:
JANEWAY: Noted. But there are regulations, and you've broken them. I'm entering a formal reprimand into your record, and I'm ordering you to break off this relationship. Do you understand?
She doesn't say "I gave a direct order and you didn't follow it", she said "you've broken regulations". If it were simply a matter of not following orders wouldn't it have been phrased differently?