Chris Carter

For King and Country




We Don't Have to Do This

September 29, 2023

I wholeheartedly reject the idea that any technological developments are “inevitable”.

To say the opposite is to ascribe technological progress to some inhuman, cosmic, or mystical force, like gravitation, or entropy, or fate. That isn’t how any technology comes about.

Technological progress is fundamentally and inescapably human. It is human ideas, exploration, experimentation, effort, frustration, money, blood, sweat, and tears which are behind every innovation. Was the discovery of the lever inevitable? Did iron smelt itself into tools? Did a boiler just sputter into a steam engine one day? Did someone dump out a bunch of parts on their workbench and accidentally make a carburetor? Was AC power just going to jump out of the wires someday, without any human intention? Did CPUs crawl out of the ground and nestle into silicon PCB boards like insects, and then start implementing algorithms to solve computational problems all by themselves?

Many see the development of AI as just another step in the fated course of human evolution, or as some kind of emergent property of our current technological state. Something which was always bound to happen. Something that just “came about” without any intention as a result of our development of computers or the internet. Something that is coming, whether you like it or not, whether you want it or not.

Even Christians are acting like AI is some inevitbility. Almost all the Christian thinkers I read are asking “how will we handle AI when it gets here?”. No one asks “is AI good?” or “does building AI please God?”. The latter are the questions that the people of God are really interested in.

I’m here to remind the Church that AI is code. And code is written by humans, and humans are sinners. No mystical cosmic force is holding a gun to anyone’s head and forcing them to write code for the next AI system. Humans choose what they want to code. No code, no AI.

To stop the development of AI, all you have to do is literally nothing.

We don’t have to build AI. We don’t have to do this.