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Jay Richards: New evangelical statement on AI avoids major pitfalls

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Jay Wesley Richards
Jay Wesley Richards

Including irrelevance:

For a Christian statement on AI, this approach is exactly right. Far too much of the public conversation about artificial intelligence proceeds as if we can and should suspend our judgment about human beings. But what sense does it make to talk about artificial intelligence unless we grasp what it means to be intelligent in the first place? …

Although the Statement nowhere distinguishes between “weak” and “strong” AI, the signers are clearly (and rightly) skeptical that computers can become conscious moral agents. Article 3, for instance, says that “technology is incapable of possessing the capacity for moral agency or responsibility.” …

I wondered why the document was released just now, so I asked Mark Tooley why he signed it. “AI is strong and will become a stronger factor in human life for all civilization, so Christians must address it in their social witness,” he told me. “If the church doesn’t offer ethical guidelines, who will? The most pressing issue is maintaining the unique God-ordained value of the human person. Many will inevitably exploit AI to diminish the sacredness of human life and will stress intelligence and capability as defining values versus the divine image on each man and woman. The challenges of AI offer an opportunity for Christians to emphasize what makes persons unique and irreplaceable in creation.” Jay Richards, “New Evangelical Statement on AI is Balanced and Well-Informed” at Mind Matters News

See also: Jay Richards: In an information economy, the human person will be at the very center

Note: Jay Richards is also author with Guillermo Gonzalez of The Privileged Planet, abut fine-tuning of Earth and the universe.

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