[I]n all these science fiction stories, there’s always this thing that bolts into somebody’s head or you become half robot or you have a really strong arm that can throw boulders or something. But what is the difference between that and having a phone with you—sorry, a computer with you—all the time that is tracking where you are, which you’re using for storing all of your personal information, your memories, your friends, your communications, that knows where you are and does all kinds of powerful things and speaks different languages? I mean, with our phones we are actually technologically enhanced creatures, and those technological enhancements, which we have basically attached to our bodies, also make us vulnerable to more government supervision, privacy invasions, and so on and so forth.
And so what we’re doing now is taking the very first, very confusing steps in what is actually a law of cyborgs as opposed to human law, which is what we’ve been used to. And what we’re confused about is that this cyborg thing, you know, the part of us that’s not human, non-organic, has no rights. But we as humans have rights, but the divide is becoming very small. I mean, it’s on your body at all times.
Humans have rights, under which they retain some measure of dominion over their bodies. Machines, meanwhile, remain slaves with uncertain masters. Our laws may, directly and indirectly, protect people’s right to use certain machines—freedom of the press, the right to keep and bear arms. But our laws do not recognize the rights of machines themselves. Nor do the laws recognize cyborgs—hybrids that add machine functionalities and capabilities to human bodies and consciousness.