It seems I was right. Back in 2011 I predicted that the next moral panic would be over sex bots or virtual reality porn, and a mere four years later we see the start of a new campaign to ban “robots designed as sex toys”, which is supposedly an “unnecessary and undesirable” technology.
Take a wild guess as to the gender of the particular idiot spear-heading this pointless moral crusade. Or don’t bother, because the answer is blindingly obvious.
Dr Kathleen Richardson — a “robot ethicist”, whatever that means — claims that such robots will “contribute to detrimental relationships between men and women, adults and children, men and men and women and women” (which seems a peculiarly verbose way of saying “everybody”). But this arrogant and condescending attempt to micro-manage other people’s emotional lives, repulsive as it is, actually conceals a far more insidious motive.
In western societies, women are the gatekeepers of sex, and they will fight tooth and manicured nail to retain this position of power. Banning technologies, criminalising entire industries and censoring the internet are all strategies that they will gladly deploy in order to ensure that men (who, let’s face it, will comprise pretty much 100% of the market for sex bots) are not able to escape from the traditional need to grovel and plead with the fairer sex in order to get their rocks off. What these moralising maternalists call “detrimental relationships” are simply those in which the man doesn’t have to beg.
There is absolutely no justification for attempting to restrict technological innovation unless the technology presents a direct threat to the safety or welfare of others. We are not talking about a nuclear missile launch system here. If somebody wants to pay through the nose for what is basically a hi-tech form of masturbation, that’s their decision and nobody else’s business. The law is not a tool for egotistical femiloons to safeguard their own desirability.
UPDATE 2015/09/17: Milo Yiannopoulos has now written about the issue and reached much the same conclusion.