Detective Del Spooner: This was hers. She wanted to be a dentist. What the h*** kind of twelve-year-old wants to be a dentist? Yeah, um… the truck smashed our cars together and pushed us into the river. You know, metal gets pretty pliable at those speeds. She’s pinned, I’m pinned, the water’s coming in. I’m a cop, so I know everybody’s dead. Just a few minutes until we figure that out. NS4 was passing by and jumped in the river.
NS4 Robot: You are in danger!
Detective Del Spooner: Save her!
NS4 Robot: You are in danger!
Detective Del Spooner: Save her! Save the girl!
Detective Del Spooner: But it didn’t. Saved me.
Susan Calvin: The robot’s brain is a difference engine. It’s reading vital signs. It must have done…
Detective Del Spooner: It did. I was the logical choice. It calculated that I had a 45% chance of survival. Sarah only had an 11% chance. That was somebody’s baby. 11% is more than enough. A human being would’ve known that. Robots, [indicating his heart], nothing here, just lights and clockwork. Go ahead, you trust ‘em if you want to.
~ Scene from I, Robot (transcript reformatted)
Isaac Asimov is perhaps best known as a science fiction writer, but he is also well known for his “Three Laws of Robotics” which are discussed in many of his works (although he initially didn’t get into many details). I, Robot was actually a series of fictional stories about robots. The clip above is from the movie, which took pieces and parts from different stories to actually create a unique plot for the movie.
Spooner, played by Will Smith, makes the point that the robot made its decision according to cold and calculating logic per its programming, whereas a human would have made an entirely different choice.
I like the movie, but I have some doubts about that particular premise. Would “a human”, as in any human, have truly valued the child more than the adult?
As far as I can see, US Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius would not have. Rather, she would have followed the rules like a heartless robot. The irony is that she, as the HHS Secretary, she is in charge of the rules!
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The U.S. health secretary said she won’t intervene in an “incredibly agonizing” transplant decision about a dying Pennsylvania girl, noting that three other children in the same hospital are just as sick.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told a congressional panel Tuesday that medical experts should make those decisions.
However, relatives of 10-year-old Sarah Murnaghan said Sebelius’ remarks confused them because they want a policy change for all pre-adolescent children awaiting lung transplants, not just Sarah.
Policy dictates that only patients over 12 years old can be put on the list. Sarah is 2 years away from that, and they are measuring her life expectancy in weeks at this point. The rub is that her doctors think the risk is minimal in her case. If she were put on the list, she would shoot to the top because of the seriousness of her current condition.
I find at least two major problems with this lunacy. First, any person with common sense knows that by its very nature governmental run programs have to make decisions who will be treated and who will not be treated. Literally, who will live and who will die. It is inevitable that medical rationing will occur in a socialistic system. It is even worse when a system is so abhorrent that a few doctors would rather quit practicing medicine rather than put up with an inherently flawed system like Obamacare. Socialized medicine requires more doctors, not less! So, even if it is only a few that will give up and leave, it still makes a big difference. At least temporarily, there will be a big shortage of doctors.
Of course, the shortage will only get slightly better. Just look to Britain to see your future, America!
The second part of this that bothers me is that one human being is deemed of lesser value than another. Babies who were not born yet are tissue and “not human”. I guess now we see that even those who are born and under 12 are not human either.
This is where the abortion mentality naturally leads to. This is where the lack of understanding of what being made in God’s image leads to. It is callous. It is cold. It is inhumane.
28 And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. 29 They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips,30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 foolish, faithless, heartless (“without natural affection”, KJV), ruthless.
When you stop to have compassion and respect for the weakest in society, then natural affection has to be squelched in order to do so. When society kills off the “unwanted”, and let’s face it, they are aborted because they are considered “inconvenient” which is a cold and calculated way of saying “unwanted”, then the collective conscience of the culture becomes seared.
It is interesting that a science fiction story talks about the inhumanity of robots when in reality human beings do not even measure up to the supposed difference.
There are lines in which God expects even the unsaved and uncalled to live up to. This is in evidence when expression like the “iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full” (Ge 15:16), not to mention the numerous prophets that warned Israel and Judah that their sins were “worse” than those of the nations they dispossessed. However, God has richly blessed this nation, which supposedly was built upon Christian principles as far as possible without outright declaring itself a Christian nation. Like Israel, God will punish a nation that has fallen so far from Him.
UPDATE: Politico reports “Sarah Murnaghan lung transplant case: Sebelius ordered to make exception on transplant”.
A federal judge has granted a temporary restraining order to allow Murnaghan to be put on the adult transplant list. The hearing is 14 June. It should be stressed that this is only temporary, though, and what happens at the hearing (should Murnaghan live that long without a transplant) will determine a lot about her future. Senators literally begging Sebelius to ease the rules did not work; it took a court order.