Robot Pride Day 2004 – State of the Union Address

Esteemed allies, we bring you a missive from the Great Walla Walla.

2004 has been an interesting year for those of you currently residing on Terra Firma (that’s the planet Earth for you who pretend to not know).

Honda and Sony have unleashed robotic companions on the marketplace, little Roomba vacuum-bots have commandeered carpets the world over and Akiva Goldsman and Will Smith have come together to capitalize on the genius of Isaac Asimov in the worst way. All tell-tale signs that the age of spiritual, cognizant machines is not only immanent but has, in fact, arrived.

Robots will forever change the significance of history and of politics that to this point have been cornerstones exclusively of human interaction and development.

Yes, the billboards say “One Man Saw It Coming”, but in fact we have seen it coming far longer than that and have psychically prepared accordingly. As this paradigm rapidly trickles into mass culture and the term “Robot Pride Day” is subsumed into the morass of robophilia destined to invade our mass distraction, it is important to remember what it was that brought us together in the first place. That is the examination, celebration and perpetuation of what it is that makes us distinctly human?that is to say?what elevates us beyond mere computational capacity and reason. It could be argued that it is language, but robots share this with us.

It is something more, or more accurately, something less than that; it is nuance, inference, those intangibles and glimpses into silent moments that we recognize as “perfect”, or that, unlike robots, we are trapped by our organic nature in a timelock, framed and propelled by our mortality so that we, who are that bittersweet intersection of language and permanent silence have a desperate will to engage with life.

Yes, we can celebrate robots as a feat of our own infinitely creative power, and their inevitable independence, but more so because we know by observing them what we can never be: therein is found the fuel that fires our rage and how we channel that into our own unique and beautiful ability, not only to be alive, but to be desperately so.

– K. Malicki-Sanchez(G-Lightflash)
August 4th, 2004