And womankind, Jean thought compulsively to himself with a twitch. The issue of registration was especially dangerous for the doctor. He had made known his mutation of telepathy and telekinesis, but his vampirism… could not be made public. A being who lived off the life-force of citizens would likely be imprisoned or even killed given the hostile environment towards even less dangerous metahumans. It was his nature to be a murderer. To register that fact with the government could very well be to sign away his freedom. And so Jean felt very passionately about mutants’ right to privacy. It actually made him sick sometimes, thinking how incongruent his situation made him to his ideals. He wouldn’t be against registration if it didn’t put everyone he cared about at risk. His fork pushed his food around on his plate, Jean’s brows furrowed.
“Except unlike firearms, we are born this way. We never asked to have these abilities or the stigma associated with them. That is not to say the majority of us would choose to be depowered if the opportunity presented itself. It seems like a huge breach of privacy to require beings of questionable power who have no history of mental illness and suggest that they register themselves in a database their fellow citizens do not have to for the sake of possible safety. It’s the definition of discrimination. A tightened grip upon the mutant populous might even inspire more extremists who feel unjustly targeted. Metahumans who commit crimes, well their powers might be noted on their record. But I think my kind should be granted the same benefit of the doubt as every other citizen. We are just like you. And we desire our freedom and privacy.” Jean himself had given up much of his privacy by centering himself within the mutant struggle. But he had the means to keep his own nature quiet. Others did not. And that was a shame in his eyes, one to be rectified.
“Define destroy. I spent a few months in the Middle East, and I can tell you, humankind is quite adept at destroying itself without the help of powers. Humans have a few bad eggs, it doesn’t mean we profile all of them, require that they register their fingerprints and DNA on the off-chance they could become a terrorist. No, we deal with the violent ones that rear their head. We take evil as it comes.” Jean sighed as he could very nearly feel the unease possessing Tristyn. “I’m sorry. I don’t mean to unsettle you. It is a passionate topic for us both. But in American history, some of the greatest breaches of human rights happened when freedom was sacrificed in the name of security.”
The surgeon’s face flushed slightly as the man brought up his telepathy. The power itself was a double-edged sword to be sure. Pragmatists saw the usefulness with the skill being used on enemies. But no one wanted it used on themselves. Understandably. Speaking of breaches of privacy, telepathy was the pinnacle of this. Concerning freedom, telepathy could turn a mind with no consent. It was one of the greatest boogymen of the anti-mutant forces. And the presidential candidate was a telepath. He tugged on is collar. “I like to think people trust me. They know what I’ve done, the restraint I’ve shown. I’ve only used my telepathy in the direst situations, with permission of the subject.”
He placed his utensils down and looked at Tristyn curiously. “What do you know about telepathy?”
"It's different with humankind." Tristyn now spoke with an air of coldness as the two were compared. "One cannot destroy cities with fingerprints and DNA. One can with X-Genes and radioactive animal bites." Licking his lips, Tristyn continued to cut his steak into pieces. "With my Registration Act, metahuman... differences... from human beings will be kept secret. The only men that will know are the men of government that need to take down these metahumans should they ever become threats. The idea of taking evil as it comes is preposterous. That very idea is what turned Gothic and Denver into the ruins they are now."
Shaking his head, the man took a bite, savoring the juices as he thought about telepathy. "I know that it can influence people. Changing what they think. I've met a few telepaths before." Nodding his head, the Goldyne continued. "I know that if the President was a telepath it'd be rather easy to pass laws, what with Congress not being prepared for such psionic power." Nodding his head once more, a bitter smile crossed the lips of the man. The not-so-subtle hint that Quentin might use his power to manipulate the government against itself was a strong statement to say the least, but Tristyn would wait to hear the response before continuing this assault.