I’ve been away from writing blog posts for a while. The terrorist attacks in Paris have just happened. It always strikes me that the term humane is based on the word human.
Humans are the only creatures (known) that are inhumane. Other creatures can do things we find are inhumane; however, they do not have the capacity to look at their decisions in terms of morals.
To be human is to live by a moral code whatever that code might be.
However, even simple and basic moral codes come with institutionalized exceptions as well as personal exceptions. To live humanely means that you adhere to your rules without exception. For rules to be adhered to without exception they have to be very basic. The more complex the rule the less likely it isn’t a moral and that it is a law. There are always exceptions to laws. Lawyers make their living making exceptions to laws.
As Heinlein put it in one of his books: Thou shalt not kill, except….. And began to list a number of circumstances.
In Asimov’s robots series he wrote something very significant about the categorization of humans. In Solaria in the future robots were impregnated with the three laws. The laws included a law that was basically robots may not kill humans. However, clever programmers on Solaria has narrowed the definition of human to include only the subspecies of humans that lived on Solaria and had adopted a number of adaptations making them different than other members of humanity.
Dehumanization is the first key in allowing people to kill. This somehow happens even to people with regard to their own family members. I suspect this is the case in this recent death of two children by a 24 year old woman. That woman may not have been the mother; however, a quick internet search reveals many cases of filicide. What does it take for a parent to kill their child?
It isn’t something that you can ignore and say it happens someplace else. Filicide happens everywhere. Even in a very specific and narrow definition of “Thou shalt not kill” were we amend “Thou shalt not kill your own immediate nuclear family” we find that people violate this rule. Violation of that rule has a definitive effect on the future of that small branch of humanity – often ending that genetic line completely.
This article points out that about 450 children are killed every year in the USA. These deaths to not take in to account adult children killed by parents in cases of “honor” killings. These cases get a little less media attention than killing of a minor aged child as if it was somehow less horrible that an adult child is killed instead of a minor aged child.
Why, though is this a topic on this blog which is nominally about computers, programming, the future, artificial intelligence, and what the world will be like in the future – Futurists paradise.
Why, though, should be very clear. We raise children and those children in a certain knowable percentage of the time kill their children – and it does not matter if those children are minors or have come of age.
AI – as I have defined it the codops (Computerized Doppelgangers) are us. AI as developing in some areas that we are essentially raising as our children – are also us, but yet different as well. Just as well, children are different than their parents and I’m finding as a parent of 4 children that my children are significantly different than I am.
We humans, are capable of such slaughter even when it is against our best interest. The codops that we may become… Will also be capable of this much slaughter in the electronic and computerized selves. Our children we raise – some of them – a small number – grow up to be parents that then in turn kill their own children.
How do we remove these tendencies from our selves (codops) and our children (traditional AI)?
I suspect that a large portion of the population have daydreams and dreams of being the hero. Fighting off the terrorists, the enemy, or even a sexual competitor to the death and rescuing their friends (again, as indicated in the article about parents killing their own children, mostly men having these dreams). How do we remove this from our minds so that there can be a safe future?
So, in this category in my blog I am going to track the inhumanity of humans. Perhaps then one day we can take this data and transform it into data and it can tell us something – maybe that essential something – on how to stop the humans from killing and in turn how to prevent the codops and AI from killing.