Thursday, October 28, 2010

Kuttner, Henry - Ex Machina

The Justice was thoughtful. "Will you please elucidate, Mr. Gallegher? Why should the oath not be administered to this robot?"
"Such an oath is applicable to man only."
"It presupposes the existence of the soul. At least it implies theism, a personal religion. Can a robot take an oath?"
The Justice eyed Joe. "It's a point, certainly. Ah... Joe. Do you believe in a personal deity?"
"I do."
point, really. Nor did it become clear until, from the maze of contradictions, there emerged the tentative decision that Joe was a rational being. This seemed to please the prosecutor immensely.
"Wait a minute," Murdoch Mackenzie said, rising. "May I ask a question, Mr. Justice?"
"Go ahead."
Mackenzie stared at the robot. "Well, now. Will you tell me, please, what this personal deity of yours is like?"
"Certainly," Joe said. "Just like me."
After a while it degenerated into a theological argument.

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