Loyalties lie with robots rather than people

 Columnist Katie Haga 

Columnist Katie Haga 

For decades, it has been assumed that by this time period we would have robots as functioning members of our society. Whether it be in books, television shows or films from the past, the 21st century has been designated as the time of technology. 

We have been living in a culture based on innovation during this decade with ever-changing technologies and for the time being, have been reluctant to experiment with artificial intelligence. Until recently. The world was introduced to Sophia, the humanoid via video which immediately went viral after its release.

After the first video was released of Sophia being interviewed by a member from Business Insider UK, other videos were uploaded to social media platforms which provoked many different responses. On Twitter, several people made memes out of the situation and its entirety, whereas some people saw the Sophia-bot as a potential threat to humankind and are lowkey terrified of the capabilities she may have. But the Sophia-bot is no joke, as of Oct. 25 Sophia became a full citizen in Saudi Arabia, “the first robot in the world to achieve such status,” according to Forbes. 

Announcing her new status during the Future Investment Initiative Conference in Saudi Arabia, the world discovered that she can express emotions, she has a sense of humor and also wants to protect humanity. But how is it that we now have a robot that has status as a citizen and yet we are still treating actual humans like they are not citizens at all?

It’s actually kind of ironic that in the midst of Sophia’s new status as a citizen going viral, the Trump administration has been granted permission by the Supreme Court to allow the travel ban to take effect. Humanity is so screwed up that we now acknowledge citizenship of a thing made out of metal and not the rights of actual human beings. 

The ban passed on Dec. 4 by the Supreme Court. The latest version gives the administration the power to completely enforce its new restrictions on individuals from eight nations who emigrate or travel to the United States, according to the New York Times. 

The eight nations where individuals will be barred from the United States include: Iran, Libya, Syria, Chad, North Korea, Somalia, Yemen and some groups of people from Venezuela. 

The restrictions of the ban vary, but in a majority of the cases, citizens from these select countries will not be able to emigrate to the United States indefinitely and many will be barred from studying, vacationing or working here. 

How is it that we have become so consumed with enhancing the latest technology and creating something so advanced to be the best, that we forget that there are other problems in the world that have to do with the human race? 

With all of the latest news on the Sophia-bot and how she has impressed many different nations, she has recently called for women’s rights in Saudi Arabia, according to CNBC.

As if the fight for women’s rights in Saudi Arabia hasn’t gone on for decades, people seem to think that a robot can fix all of that, even though women were just recently granted the access to drive in the nation in September. In the Islamic kingdom, Sophia has been granted more rights than a woman. 

Citizenship isn’t necessarily an easy thing to gain for many people and yet a robot was effortlessly handed citizenship on a silver platter. 

It has now gotten to the point where the rights of a machine are deemed to be more important than actual human beings, and that’s terrifying.