Sex Robots: Hysteria and Hypocrisy

sexbotI’m going to comment on the Birmingham Mail’s article Sex robots condemned by furious Salvation Army.

The Salvation Army has condemned the dawn of sex robots.

This is unsurprising, considering sex robots pretty clearly violate Christian teachings on sexuality and go against the puritanical nature of the Protestant church.

[They are] warning that the technology could increase demand for people trafficked into the UK for sexual exploitation. The Christian church and charity said so-called “sexbots” would “have a detrimental effect on both existing and potential victims of modern slavery”, rather than decrease demand for real sex workers.

Rather than admitting that their religious beliefs are the reason for which they oppose sex robots, they seem to be fabricating a narrative.

Kathryn Taylor, of the Salvation Army’s anti-trafficking and modern slavery unit said the androids, some of which have sensors responsive to touch and can be programmed with personalities, could encourage sex to be viewed as a “commodity”.

Based on what evidence? This sounds a lot like the debunked “video games lead to actual violence” myth.

She said: “It could fuel demand for sex with people and lead to traffickers exploiting more vulnerable individuals to meet this demand.

“Could” being the operative word.

“Sexbots won’t fulfil the need for human interaction and for rewarding, loving relationships.

And prostitutes will? Sex robots are designed to fulfill the desire for sex, which is exactly what prostitutes do. It’s hard to believe that someone who has spent thousands of dollars on a bot is then going to visit the local brothel more frequently than he would have if he didn’t have the bot.

“In the same way that pornography normalises certain behaviours, the availability of sexbots could normalise a distorted power dynamic which devalues the other person involved when transferred to human interactions.

If the interaction being referred to is between John and prostitute, it is already a distorted economic power dynamic that devalues the prostitute. If it refers to a consensual sexual interaction, then consensual is the key phrase. If a woman finds that a man who has used bots treats her badly, she is free to leave.

“This could encourage increased objectification of women and children and a lack of respect for their fellow human beings.”

Again, could. Is there any evidence? If not, I’m going to assume you are saying this because you don’t like the idea of sex robots.

Prof Sharkey, of the University of Sheffield, warned a robot programmed to resist sexual advances was effectively a rape victim and that animate child-like sex robots being manufactured in Japan should be banned from the UK.

A robot is a robot; it’s a thing, not a person. Indulging in rape fantasies with a robot is probably safer than doing so with a prostitute. And I’d rather people where having sex with child-like robots that actual child prostitutes. I’m going to predict that at least child-like sexbots will be banned.

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About jimbelton

I'm a software developer, and a writer of both fiction and non-fiction, and I blog about movies, books, and philosophy. My interest in religious philosophy and the search for the truth inspires much of my writing.
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