24

Brannigan, p3

December 2, 2022 by Tim


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Sif
Sif
1 month ago

that feels a lot like the argument people were having in the comment yesterday

PhobosRising
PhobosRising
1 month ago
Reply to  Sif

See, it’s that wording of “companion mother” that disturbs me the most.

P2Mc28
P2Mc28
1 month ago
Reply to  Sif

My Companion mother makes 50 bucks an hour on the PC(Personal Computer). She has been out of w0rk for quite some time however last month her check was 11,500 bucks only w0rking on the PC(Personal Computer) for 9 hours per day.
For more detail visit this article.. https://profitguruonline1.blogspot.com/

Last edited 1 month ago by P2Mc28
ThatGuy
ThatGuy
1 month ago

We all knew this was coming, but hoooo boy…there’s a storm a-brewin’ indeed >_>

I’m still convinced that Scott won’t go down the path of a villain, or even an anti-hero like Deathblood, but I don’t see him changing his mind either.

My only solace is that Scott and Ethan still see each other as family, but this is giving me “you’re not invited to Thanksgiving dinner” family vibes…

Urazz
Urazz
1 month ago
Reply to  ThatGuy

Ethan and Scott are on opposite sides of the matter, while Lucas was the one in the middle with the more responsible opinion. He was fine with keeping the bomb on Zeke until he proved he wasn’t a threat to humanity.

Eldest Gruff
Eldest Gruff
1 month ago

I think it’s just well-worked storycraft, that Ethan’s already faced this before himself. Back when the Troll fell, and he had to face the fact that he wasn’t entirely certain whether he had let him slip.

Because if he did, and he decided that it was justified, or that it wasn’t so bad… that invalidates his argument. He’s *also* on the same road as Scott, just further down. But if he realized that there was no excuse… then he’s coming from a place of “I’ve been there, you dont want to go down that path.”

Brian
Brian
1 month ago
Reply to  Eldest Gruff

Yeah. Ethan always felt guilty about the Troll incident and likely still does to a degree. That’s what makes his experience different from Scott or Deathblood. Deathblood felt no guilt at all killing those drug dealers. Scott doesn’t feel guilty about almost killing ZK, if he feels guilty at all it’s guilt from being caught in his lie about disabling the bomb. The fact he kept trying to remotely disable ZK even after the bomb went off is proof that he wouldn’t have felt guilty over their death if it had killed them.

Ben
Ben
1 month ago
Reply to  Eldest Gruff

I’ll say it: the world is better without the Troll*, and it’s good that Ethan dropped him. Ethan probably would agree with this statement. BUT there’s a big difference between believing somebody should be dead, and believing it to the kind of fanatical degree where you feel justified and remorseless actually killing them. Ethan has NEVER done the latter. Even if in the heat of the moment he lost a fight with himself and dropped the Troll on purpose, he was nothing short of horrified by his actions. Scott is sad that is actions hurt Ethan, and sad that he… Read more »

Ben
Ben
1 month ago
Reply to  Ben

That line is why, even knowing who Adolf Hitler will be, giving somebody a guaranteed safe time travel back to 1930 and a pistol, most people will be unable to shoot him in cold blood.

Urazz
Urazz
1 month ago
Reply to  Ben

Not really. That’s simplifying the argument and answer. Like, what time do you travel back in time to kill Hitler? Do you travel back when he is a baby/child or as an adult just before he start’s his path? The answer isn’t simple either. Some people will kill him to save lives simple as that. Some people don’t necessarily feel it’s wrong to murder a mass murderer, like Hitler, for the sake of saving others but won’t because they don’t know what would happen to the future or how things will turn out if they did. Others would try to… Read more »

Casi
Casi
1 month ago
Reply to  Urazz

If i had a time machine, i wouldn’t go back in time to kill hitler, i’d go back in time to get him accepted into art school, it could drastically change his path and prevent him from becoming who he did become. But i’d have no problem going back and taking out hitler after he published Mein Kampf though

Robert
Robert
1 month ago
Reply to  Eldest Gruff

Ethan is already on the path because he’s a vigilante himself. He’s a benign one but he uses violence against criminals without having police powers. At least in our world he would be. I love this arc because the line really is grey. I’m solidly on the side of Zeke is a person and what Scott did was attempted murder, but I understand why Scott might be ok with murder here. Imagine if it was a human with a power so powerful that humanity might not be able to resist it. And that human regularly went around announcing how he… Read more »

Eldest Gruff
Eldest Gruff
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert

Respectfully disagree. Death is the one punishment that strips the person of the opportunity to reform. Anyone has the capability of choosing to be better; anyone should have another chance.

I get what you’re saying from a civil standpoint, but that’s why it should be a justice system determining if that’s the best course of action, and not a vigilante. No single human has the right to kill another single human, unless it’s the ONLY solution to stop them from killing *another* human immediately.

Robert L
Robert L
1 month ago
Reply to  Eldest Gruff

In general terms I agree with you, because no human being really has that much power. If I lived in Worm’s world I’d still kill Panacea with hardly a second thought. Scott was wrong but he’s not as wrong as some people think he is.

Quibble
Quibble
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert L

For those out of the Loop, Panacea is the girl that desperately tries to heal other people to the point of burning herself out because she knows her powers can do horrific things if misused. Like, If you’re gonna be making a point on morality, maybe one of the more morally nuanced characters in Worm is maybe not the best example. Perhaps you were thinking of Bonesaw, the largely unrepentant murderer that uses mad biology to inflict horrific body modifications and torture on people instead?

Mnemnosyne
Mnemnosyne
1 month ago
Reply to  Quibble

Panacea is actually a good example. Especially for someone who is genuinely not being bigoted about this. If it really is all about the threat that Zeke represents, then you’d be willing to do this even if the person that poses that threat was human. Panacea is a great example of a being that really, really does pose just that big a threat, because she could create a disease so powerful and infectious that it would spread across the world before killing everyone, and she knows exactly how to best do it. If you’re looking for a ‘this person must… Read more »

Gonfrask
Gonfrask
1 month ago

You are having words much before whiskey drinks…tch tch. This is another situation for street heroes, if the see their victims as people or not, the classic “they are, but they hurt the world more than they contribute to it” is also the usual answer. Wolverine has been there, heroes from Avatar Press too… sometimes seems like the evil people must be really bad to make that the “justice” is done when they are killed. These last years, when I see in movies the character massacring the bad guy followers I usually ask my self “was necessary?” For example Jhon… Read more »

Jacob
Jacob
1 month ago
Reply to  Gonfrask

I think the big difference in John Wick is that he isn’t operating on the side of the law, and as we’ve seen in 3 movies and a new trailer, anyone left alive still works towards maximum revenge, with the exception of those who share a mutual respect for each other (Francis the door guard, the Doctor from 1&2, etc.)

Gonfrask
Gonfrask
1 month ago
Reply to  Jacob

I doubt very much the gang member #13 has very much reason to revenge except for loosing his job and has to look for a new boss 😅😅

Still, Wick is saw as a somekind of hero, most likely as others would see Deathblood

Last edited 1 month ago by Gonfrask
M37h3w3
M37h3w3
1 month ago

> It’s amazing what you can justify once you decide someone isn’t a person.

Demonizing the other. It’s a trick that’s probably as old as the human race.

Ben
Ben
1 month ago
Reply to  M37h3w3

It’s been an unfortunate necessity for humans to wage war against each other. It’s why examples of impromptu truces like the Christmas truce of WWI happened between the actual men fighting each other whereas the generals and politicians, far from the fight and thus unable to see the enemy as their fellow man, wished to carry on.

Bubble181
Bubble181
1 month ago
Reply to  M37h3w3

Demonizing, or turning them into pests. The Holocaust was not a destruction of human lives, it was pest control (according to the Nazis, of course, not according to me). It’s why cartoons and jokes reducing the Other to vermin (Jewish rats, Afghan goats, Democrat subhuman infiltrators, Republican lizards) are so dangerous. Once your people believe the other is a lesser life form, anything goes.

FantasiaWHT
FantasiaWHT
1 month ago
Reply to  Bubble181

See also slavery. See also abortion.

Rolan7
Rolan7
1 month ago
Reply to  FantasiaWHT

I liked this before I realized it could be meant either way, so I’ll leave it liked.
I think the most ironclad argument for abortion as a right is to act like fetuses ARE people, and so are pregnant people. Can we justify *forcing* 9 months of pregnancy on someone even if a life depends on it?
If yes, the rest of us can equally be forced to give blood and redundant organs to preserve human lives.

Urazz
Urazz
1 month ago
Reply to  Rolan7

Abortion isn’t as simple of topic like Slavery though. There are some legitimate reasons to get one. Some people get abortions simply for economic reasons. Even giving birth is expensive so it’s not as simple as just give birth to the kid and put him/her up for adoption. Pregnancy can also dramatically alter a woman’s body permanently. It can be something good like you are no longer lactose intolerant (happened to my sister, who was mildly lactose intolerant.) or it could cause something bad, and you develop a medical issue. Then there are the situations where there doesn’t seem like… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Urazz
MRD
MRD
1 month ago
Reply to  Urazz

Slavery, by today’s standards is incredibly simple. But if you look back to what people were saying the the late 1700s, it seemed about as complex as abortion does now. Looking back a couple of centuries with a pair of today’s glasses isn’t quite as helpful as most people think.

ThatMageGuy
ThatMageGuy
1 month ago
Reply to  Urazz

Abortion is real simple.

Don’t want one? Don’t get one.

Nobody’s business what you do with your body.

Swiftbow
Swiftbow
1 month ago
Reply to  ThatMageGuy

There are TWO bodies involved in an abortion. The woman’s… and the baby’s.

You are “othering” the baby to pretend otherwise.

Rolan7
Rolan7
1 month ago
Reply to  Swiftbow

The fetus, but sure. Can we legally force someone to risk their life for a baby, a fetus, or any other adult? I don’t think so (even if they’re a police officer, according to US courts). The consequences of requiring that of people who haven’t even signed a contract would be horrific. Mandatory blood donation and posthumous organ donation would save FAR more lives than fetuses saved by banning abortion, so logically we would require that too. It is illegal to abuse a child/baby, but we cannot require people to internally host fetuses unless we want a sci-fi dystopia. (Unless… Read more »

Reshogg
Reshogg
1 month ago
Reply to  Swiftbow

If your against abortion go adopt an orphan. I believe every pro-lifer should adopt orphan until the last orphanage finally close because everyone has been adopted. Then and only then should abortion be illegal.

The Legacy
The Legacy
1 month ago
Reply to  Bubble181

That exactly. Using recent events as an example, it’s very easy to fall into the trap that the Russians soldiers are horrible people and slaughtered for their attack on Ukraine. But there is plenty of evidence that many Russian soldiers don’t even want to be there. Some of them have also been misled. Many of them are under equipped. Some of the theft is simply due to literal survival, due to a lack of rations. That’s not to say that I’m depending Russia in it. Far from it. The regime is guilty and deserves to be charged with war crimes.… Read more »

ThisIsNotDan
ThisIsNotDan
1 month ago
Reply to  M37h3w3

And yet debates over “personhood” continue even in modern liberal societies today, completely missing the point that Ethan is making: we don’t have the right to choose who is a person and who is just a clump of cells with human DNA.

Crias
Crias
1 month ago
Reply to  ThisIsNotDan

If I accidentally chop off my finger, that’s a clump of cells with human DNA, and I’m sure we would agree it’s clearly not a person. It’s clear what you’re alluding to, but don’t pretend a line doesn’t exist. You seem to think Ethan’s position is that there is no debate, but it’s clear that he has his own line for what constitutes a “person”. If he thinks Scott isn’t allowed to unilaterally decide who is and isn’t a person, then logically Ethan doesn’t get that right either. The definition must exist, and the decision must be made. The position… Read more »

Pulse
Pulse
1 month ago
Reply to  Crias

if you chop off your finger and it gets up and tells you how much of an ass you are for chopping it off, your finger is more than a clump of cells.

Crias
Crias
1 month ago
Reply to  Pulse

Stop and think for a moment about what ThisIsNotDan is obviously alluding to.

Because that’s not going to get up and tell you anything either.

I’m shocked I even have to clarify this. The point is a line exists. We’re in agreement that a finger isn’t a person. Obviously.

My point was that this is not the space for the debate NotDan wants to have, but he’s incorrect (IMO) in thinking the comic implies there should be no debate. The point in the comic appears to be that it shouldn’t be up to an individual to unilaterally and irreversably decide.

Last edited 1 month ago by Crias
Jayle
Jayle
1 month ago
Reply to  Crias

dude, don’t try to make this political , not in a goof video game cartoon’s chat section…

Crias
Crias
1 month ago
Reply to  Jayle

I wasn’t making it political dude, the person I was replying to was.

My only comment was that the comic is saying an individual doesn’t get to draw the line for everyone. We have to work it out together as a society… and not here in this comic comment section IMO.

Last edited 1 month ago by Crias
Derfman1963
Derfman1963
1 month ago
Reply to  Crias

Unless there is a giant leap in technology, your finger would never detach itself on it’s own and then continue to grow, with assistance from you in it’s first few years.Your analogy makes no sense. I know plenty of people that would love to extend human rights to all living creatures. If we did that then we would need to round up all carnivores to keep them from killing prey animals, wouldn’t we? I mean, is it only murder if humans kill them? Humans only extend human rights to other humans for a very good reason. Our existence in this… Read more »

David K.
David K.
1 month ago
Reply to  Derfman1963

Odds are that clump of cells won’t continue to grow into a person either. Most of them don’t without any outside interference whatsoever. Lots of things MIGHT happen in the future, that doesn’t mean we must take them in to account when deciding what can or can’t be done now. Because if we extend that line of thinking murder becomes permanently justifiable because at some point the clump of cells that are you will be dead. Why should it matter whether it happens now or in the future?

Derfman1963
Derfman1963
1 month ago
Reply to  David K.

And yet, here you are, against all odds. Funny how that works, huh.

Nomx
Nomx
1 month ago
Reply to  Derfman1963

Why are you commenting instead of donating sperm or being a surrogate mother? All of those unborn people should have chances to exist, and you’re robbing them of that by not devoting your time, body, and effort to them.

Derfman1963
Derfman1963
1 month ago
Reply to  Nomx

Because I am a responsible adult that has raised two boys of my own. I am near the end of my life(senior citizen) and therefore what you described would be increeeeeeedibly irresponsible. So, what have you done for this world? How many lives have you saved? I at least have been part of saving many lives as I spent a few years as a medic in the AF. Then a medical tech in civilian life. That not enough for you? Then you go stuff it.

Crias
Crias
1 month ago
Reply to  Derfman1963

For the record, my “analogy” wasn’t an analogy. It was pointing out that NotDan’s increeeeedibly subtle wording was in fact not subtle.

I really don’t care to debate the topic you clearly want to debate on a web comic. It accomplishes nothing. But NotDan and people like him who keep pretending this comic is hard evidence supporting their view can get told to stuff it from time to time.

Derfman1963
Derfman1963
1 month ago
Reply to  Crias

And yet you put in your 2 cents and then a few. Seems to me you just want to make your point and not have anybody call you out on it.You should also look up the definition of analogy. You clearly made one.

Pyre
Pyre
1 month ago
Reply to  ThisIsNotDan

I’m giving you and FantasiaWHT a +1 because it’s a good point despite what my RL stance is on what you’re alluding to. Would Ethan be willing to apply that reasoning on [politically sensitive issue] as well? What about higher-order primates who are able to clearly communicate simple concepts to humans? Many of them would score higher on an IQ test than people with severe mental disabilities. However, as a society, we don’t consider primates “people” and the mentally disabled “not-people”. What is Ethan’s response to that? Ethan, in his quest to start a fight, is unintentionally torpedoing his own… Read more »

lightsabermario
lightsabermario
1 month ago
Reply to  ThisIsNotDan

It seems like we need to establish what is and isn’t a human life. This paper seems relevant. https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3211703

Derfman1963
Derfman1963
1 month ago
Reply to  ThisIsNotDan

It’s funny how so many people that read this comic give more consideration to a fictional AI than the real life “clump of cells” that can actually turn into a real life human. Wonder why I am so worried about where our society is headed? This, this right here.

Urazz
Urazz
1 month ago
Reply to  Derfman1963

Maybe because that clump of cells won’t actually grow into a human without outside interference, the woman carrying it and supporting it with her body.

lightsabermario
lightsabermario
1 month ago
Reply to  Urazz

So you’re describing the act of leaving the fetus in the womb and letting them grow naturally as “outside interference”, and actively removing them from the womb as “no outside interference”? I dunno, mate, seems kinda backwards if you ask me.

Rolan7
Rolan7
1 month ago

Pregnancy is a lot more labor than just “leaving the fetus in the womb”. It tends to require a bit more than that. It’s expensive and physically demanding.

Swiftbow
Swiftbow
1 month ago
Reply to  Urazz

A baby will also stop growing and die after it’s born if you just leave it on a table. (IE, without outside interference.)

Of course, the former Governor of Virginia was okay with that, too. Are you?

Travis
Travis
1 month ago
Reply to  M37h3w3

Humans kill each other sometimes. Animals also often kill each other.

There are two ways to handle this debate. Moral grandstanding or logical threat reduction.

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago

Guys, come on, you’re still on the “first whiskey” stage!

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago

Well we’ve seen the exact same in the comments on the previous comic, but sadly for Ethan he has it the wrong way around. Everything isn’t a person unless decided it isn’t. Something is a person based on the notions of personhood deemed unique to humanity. People are defined as being fundamentally equal because we are equally created (biologically). We might extend rights and protections to non-persons for other reasons but that does not make them persons. You can’t just transfer that equality onto something created differently, just because it feels right to you, and claim objective morality. Deathblood can’t… Read more »

Historywhiz
Historywhiz
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

I want to agree with you, and I suppose that I do in several ways (exactly which ones would take several paragraphs of hair-splitting) but there is a rather large problem with this argument. Human equality is not biological in origin. I should know, as someone with multiple disabilities and chronic conditions, I am aware that my claim to equality with individuals who can physically do things I am incapable of rests not on biology but morality. And there are so so many people in this world that are worse off than me. What “unique” thing makes humans human? It… Read more »

The Legacy
The Legacy
1 month ago
Reply to  Historywhiz

I’m with you, and I disagree with Dorander here. I can make a really simple analogy here; if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, qnd sounds like a duck, it’s probably a duck. In other words, Zeke has the personality of a person, speaks like a person, and is humanoid like a person (though in cases like with AI this part should be loosely followed), by definition Zeke is a person. Zeke even showed the ability to learn. The big problem with being selectivr on what is the definition of a person is that it has been… Read more »

Esc
Esc
1 month ago
Reply to  The Legacy

Yeah like, I’m a bit puzzled why anyone is even entertaining the possibility that “zeke isn’t a person.” Tim is great, and the story is good, but lets be real this isn’t the first story in the history of man which has presented a non-human sapient intelligence and asked “is this human?” From Frankenstein’s monster to ET to Ex Machina, we always arrive at the same conclusion: being a human isn’t a precondition for being a person. It is easy to imagine an intelligence can be human-like enough to count as a person to us without actually being a human… Read more »

Crias
Crias
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc

I feel like this was Scott’s initial argument too – that Zeke, regardless of “personhood”, is an unknown with expressed desire to eliminate humanity and the theoretical capability to accomplish it. I don’t recall Scott making a specific argument to personhood really. His language was pretty clear, but the core of his argument rested on the danger of Zeke as a weapon. I feel like Ethan kind of shattered that argument in the last panel, and now we’re following the natural line – justifying the action by reverting to the base assumption of whether Zeke is a person. That leads… Read more »

Moridin
Moridin
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc

I think the nuance is that biological creation of personhood is a generally understood concept (that we still argue about ‘when’ that line is met), but is also a thing we have arguements about (where on the sapience line is personhood). But machine intelligence is not a line we have even that well defined. A toaster is not a person, Alexa is not a person, Zeke (and probably Jarvis & Friday) are advanced enough that they qualify as a person. But where is the line between Alexa and Zeke that personhood is achieved? For Ethan, its most lower than Scott

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc

It ought to be pointed out that none of your examples actually exist. You’re arguing that because something’s made something up according to a certain theme, it’s therefor not fiction but fact. You’re also cherrypicking. You’re ignoring all the fictional examples where we were presented with a non-human sapient intelligence and it proceeded to go on an animalistic murdering spree. Or they turned out to just be too alien to comprehend. In real life, being human is definitely a precondition for being a person. Fiction can make up beings like us but currently in real life, there are no beings… Read more »

Rolan7
Rolan7
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

Historywhiz in the original reply used real-life examples of animals which have components of what we recognize as personhood.

I think you have a good point about fictional examples- there’s really no question that Zeke is sapient/sentient/a person/whatever, but that’s author fiat. Zeke’s more a metaphor for dehumanized minorities than for actual synthetic or animal personhood.

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Rolan7

There’s absolutely a question, until Tim outright says it. Until then, all perspectives on Zeke’s personhood are inferred from personal assumptions along with some information from the comic. People believe what they WANT to believe about Zeke, in order to create the narrative they like to see. There’s nothing wrong with that, mind you. Stories are meant to engage us and do exactly that, take us on a journey partly in our own minds and partly in the author’s. However we should not confuse that with some kind of objective notion, like stating that Zeke “is” something. You state he’s… Read more »

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  The Legacy

Analogies are by definition logical fallacies. It doesn’t really matter what something looks like. Bit of awkward to note that what something “looks like” has been used to repress some of those groups you’re referring to.

The simple fact is, “probably” isn’t good enough. People fail on “probably” all the time. Historywhiz mentioned a great example: dolphins. Looks like a fish, swims like a fish. Isn’t a fish.

You can’t just ignore parts you don’t like, or facts you’re unaware of, just to push a narrative. Well, you can try, obviously, but it’s not a very good point :-).

David K.
David K.
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

“Analogies are by definition logical fallacies”

No, no they are not. You either do not know what the definition of analogy is, logical fallacy is, or I suspect, both.

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  David K.

Yeah. They really are. The analogous argument he’s using states that just because something is “like” something else, it therefor “is” that. More formally: A has traits A, B, and C, B has traits A, B and C, therfor both A and B have trait D. You don’t get from “similar” to “is” without making assumptions from absent premises. If you’re making unstated assumptions, your reasoning isn’t valid. Here’s an easy counter-example using the aforementioned duck: A duck has a beak and feathers. A sparrow has a beak and feathers. Therefor ducks and sparrows are both waterfowl. This is basic… Read more »

Esc
Esc
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

I wish I had your confidence when I act stupid.

all inductions are logical fallacies”

Yet, inductions are valid proofs all the time and often true.

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc

I’m sorry, I’m going to be as polite about it as I possibly can at this point, even though you’ve clearly put no such limitations on yourself. You are flat out, objectively, wrong. A fallacy is defined as reasoning that is logically invalid. Validity is the first lesson of logic 101. Not merely logic 101, the VERY FIRST THING you learn if you ever learn about logic. Since you clearly have never had any lesson in logic, nor, in your eager arrogance to correct and insult somebody else took the effort to type in the words “inductive reasoning” in Google,… Read more »

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Historywhiz

When I used the phrase “equally created (biologically)” I did not mean to imply that we are biologically equal, but that we’re created biologically. Just in case somebody was going to get religious on me for using the term ‘created’ :P. You are right in saying that the line is difficult to draw exactly. The simplest definition of a human is as the offspring of two humans. Sounds a bit droll but if you look at the practice of how we draw the lines, there’s endless debate about what quality makes us uniquely human but very little debate that every… Read more »

David K.
David K.
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

“but that we’re created biologically”

And? Why is that relevant? A flower is created biologically. That doesn’t make it a person. Milk is created biologically. That doesn’t make it a person. You assert being biological as if it’s somehow meaningful when it’s very much not.

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  David K.

Next time, read the reaction my post was directed at, which was in turn directed at an earlier post of mine. That way you don’t take sentences out of context and create a strawman argument. I did not assert that being biological is sufficient cause for anything.

Context. It matters.

GeorgeV
GeorgeV
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

You’re kind of ignoring the actual problem there, which is how to do the deciding on what constitutes a person. And the (probably even more relevant) follow-up problem of what should be the criteria to define something as a person. You might be right that Zeke doesn’t match the current definitions of a person (I’ll happily admit I haven’t checked up on those) as defined/decided on by law, but even laws can be wrong, or unfair, or simply outdated. If Zeke doesn’t meet them (yet), there’s a solid argument to be made that the definition(s) of a person should be… Read more »

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  GeorgeV

Sure, and there’s a solid argument to make that it shouldn’t, which is why even if such beings would exist in real life such an amendment is by no means a given. Let’s take a fun traditional route to consider this issue: trolley problems :D. To avoid cop-outs, assume that anyone or anything hit by the trolley is permanently destroyed/dead. Problem 1, the most common trolley problem first, to establish a baseline: The trolley is headed towards five people, on the other track there’s one other person. Do you pull the lever? Problem 2: The trolley is headed towards five… Read more »

GeorgeV
GeorgeV
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

Of course there’s arguments for both sides, that’s why there is a debate in the first place. That’s precisely the debate/problem you seem to be ignoring. Everything you’ve said is either clearly right (if Zeke isn’t a person) or obviously wrong (if he actually is). But in either case, it’s pretty much meaningless without solving the actual debate to determine which is true. Your initial position of ‘Ethan can’t unilaterally decide Zeke is a person’ might be technically correct, but that’s not exactly useful information when the actual debate is specifically about deciding whether Zeke qualifies as a person or… Read more »

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  GeorgeV

I’m not ignoring any debate at all, in fact, I’m participating in it. It is you who stated that there are arguments, without making any arguments, as if the very existence of arguments means that your perspective on Zeke’s personhood is factually correct. I understand how trolley problems work just fine. They are relevant because if you wish to declare Zeke a person, trolley problems have the fun function of making that declaration problematic by testing if you’ll actually make decisions for a machin declared person in the same way you would an actual person. See, the crux of the… Read more »

GeorgeV
GeorgeV
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

I’m not stating that the existence of arguments means that my position is correct. I was stating that your initial post is irrelevant, as all of its arguments require having solved the discussion about Zeke being a person first. When the main discussion is about deciding whether Zeke is a person or not (and why), statements like “Everything isn’t a person unless decided it isn’t” are rather pointless. It’s technically correct, but has the same usefulness as saying ‘That is right unless it’s wrong’. Similarly you went off on a tangent that Ethan (or anyone) can’t unilaterally decide something is… Read more »

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  GeorgeV

The statement “everything isn’t a person unless decided it isn’t” is absolutely relevant because it establishes where the burden of proof lies. Ethan wants to claim Zeke is a person, then Ethan has to prove that Zeke is a person. It’s as simple as that. Ethan doesn’t get to decide that Zeke is a person, and then accuse Scott of being a prejudiced murderer unless Scott can somehow argue that Zeke isn’t a person. It’s his job to prove that Zeke meets the requirements for personhood, not the other way around. If the definitions for Zeke being not being a… Read more »

MadHaetter
MadHaetter
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

I ask you Dorander, what is the difference between a character and something that is not a character?

What makes Zeke a character and not a person?

What makes a Human a person?

What makes Ethan a person?

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  MadHaetter

You’re going to have to define “character” for me in this context if you want me to answer that question. A character is too broad a concept and has no direct meaning in real life. It’s a concept used to describe objects that act under some narrative, that’s way too broad to answer your question in any meaning that makes sense. I could state that that’s it, that characters ‘act’ under some narrative as directed by the author but I doubt that’ the answer you’re looking for. A dysfunctional toaster is a character, or a specific flesh-eating plant in the… Read more »

MadHaetter
MadHaetter
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

Full respect, you handled those questions in a thoughtful and mature manner. I could continue this by quibbling about what free will is but that wasn’t why I asked the questions. I appreciate you answered this. As for the answer to your question, what character means wasn’t as important as your interpretation of it. Oxford 2 works “a person in a novel, play, or film” or in this case a web comic. Though I suppose that does smuggle in the person thing so whatever definition you prefer. If you wouldn’t mind more questions, having read through some (but probably not… Read more »

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  MadHaetter

Haha yeah, the Oxford definition there smuggles the person in by stipulation. I’d disagree with the notion that a character has to be a person, and apparently, with Oxford. I’m not entirely sure on your source as I don’t know what you mean by “Oxford 2” but the OED exists to help us find how words are used and aren’t necessarily the only thing they mean. In trying to find your source for example, I ran across the publically accessible “Oxford learnings dictionary” which has a similar definition but also includes animals in such sources. How to go about proving… Read more »

Nomx
Nomx
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

Sorry, this trolly situation doesn’t represent real life, so just like you’re unwilling to engage in the discussion of whether Zeke is a person, I refuse to engage in your constructed binaries!

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Nomx

That’s fine, it wasn’t actually directed at you, but thank you for your attempt to draw attention to yourself I guess? Since you’re so engaged, feel free to read the response to the other guy. As for unwillingness to engage in the discussion, I’ve done that in the previous comic. It’s furthermore worth pointing out, again, that stating that “there’s an argument to be made” but not actually making the argument, is not engaging in the discussion. And again, the burden of proof is with the people claiming Zeke is a person. Feel free to read the entire conversation rather… Read more »

no thanks nintendo
no thanks nintendo
1 month ago

Ethan still simping for villains who kidnapped him and killed him several times, I see.

leduk
leduk
1 month ago

“hey, if you think cold blood murder without trial isnt the solution you are simping” -some vigilante wanabee

Richard Weatherfield
Richard Weatherfield
1 month ago

Yeah, how dare he recognize that human beings don’t deserve to be slaughtered like animals without due process of law…

That was sarcasm, by the way.

Timmeh
Timmeh
1 month ago

Oh man. I hate every part of your comment, thanks!

Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago

This represents a real life, ages-old debate. One that’s nigh-impossible to solve.

And not just ‘cos there’s plenty of incorrect attitudes muddying it all up. Extremism, corruption, irrationality, hubris, bias, etc.

But also because, even if you get rid of all those mistakes (a miracle in itself)… It’s inherently dificult. To the extreme.

I mean, can you come up with a sure-fire way to create a totally fair and well-balanced justice system? When NOTHING you do will EVER please enough people for long enough?

Steve
Steve
1 month ago

Evil people of the “well intentioned extremist” don’t even have to initially decide someone isn’t a person to do them wrong. They merely have to claim a hypothetical “greater good,” at which point anyone who objects and/or protests – or acts against the agenda/narrative, even inadvertently, BECOMES a sub-human obstacle to be removed, in their eyes. Ethan’s point stands, but something usually has to happen to push someone into acting the way Scott/Deathblood did/do. It might be upbringing (like many in the real world), it might be tragedy (like Scott), it might be childhood trauma (getting bulled and saying “I’ll… Read more »

Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago

They’re both right. It is a complex situation. But Ethan is “more right.” Complex or not, Zeke is clearly sentient. With a human-style psyche and personality, too. Scott could only arrive to his conclusion, through the same biased ways a lot of racism does. They always go for the “not truly human” and/or “lesser than” bs before starting out their persecution. Their genocides. The true danger of prejudice, is that it doesn’t work only on the full-on a-holes. It also does on the many enablers they need as cannon fodder, to start their abuses on a large scale. You can… Read more »

Marcus
Marcus
1 month ago

i feel like ethan is so emotional and ready for a fight that the timelapse in comic cant account for it. so when scott hesitates to continue his train of thought, the double hyphen, its almost like ethan is just interrupting him before he can finish. humans gonna be human…. silly meat bags…

MastaPickles
MastaPickles
1 month ago

Ethan needs to go home, he’s drunk. Ethan isn’t thinking especially clearly in this situation. Mr. Blood’s methods may be a little punisher-like. However, Ethan is also treating these criminals like saints. How many times did Ethan need to self revive until he started having control over the situation? If they’re this comfortable I’m casually killing, how many people have they killed before Ethan got there. He didn’t do any research into these people, he basically just bumbled into them. Regarding the zeke situation. Ethan is also thinking more emotional then pratical. The circumstances here are more nuanced then simply,… Read more »

David K.
David K.
1 month ago
Reply to  MastaPickles

“However, Ethan is also treating these criminals like saints.”

First, nowhere does Ethan treat them like saints.

Second in your world view only saints deserve not to be summarily executed based on a single persons decision?

I’ve got bad news for you in that case, because I guarantee you are no saint.

Ashi
Ashi
1 month ago
Reply to  MastaPickles

Answer me this…..*ASSUMING* everything you say is right (And let me be crystal clear – I DO NOT THINK THAT),…why would you settle for just the killswitch? If you’re right, then there is nothing which could possibly support the claim that he won’t act I. THE FUTURE, so
..why wouldn’t you just blow him up now? Because he DOESN’T believe it.

TheCK
TheCK
1 month ago

I can’t believe there are comments here where people are taking the “Roomba is human” discussion as real…………. I mean I think it’s great you are into the story line but if you are not intelligent enough to tell what a human is……….. no offense but yeah our education system failed you.

What makes it even better is that before every one of your comments was made you had to click a checkbox that literally says: “I’m not a ROBOT”.

Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago
Reply to  TheCK

Um, I don’t think anyone is claiming ZK is human. What we’re claiming, is that ZK is sentient. That ZK has the key defining elements that make up a person. OF COURSE ZK is not human. ZK is not even biological. In any case, even if some people may be making that mistake. I see a lot of us, who aren’t. So… Your point is based on a very obvious failure at basic reading comprehension. Ironic, that you claim education failed us while you literally fail to read correctly. I just did a word search. 14 mentions of “human.” NONE… Read more »

GUNnibal
GUNnibal
1 month ago
Reply to  Rolando

Hello, officer? I would like to report a murder committed with a blunt object, to wit, facts.

Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago
Reply to  GUNnibal

Please explain. I’m not a native English speaker, and sometimes I’m unsure about how to interpret.

playing it safe
playing it safe
1 month ago
Reply to  Rolando

They’re saying you killed the person’s argument by using facts.

TheCK
TheCK
1 month ago

I can see how it would be hard for a non native person – since the statements were actually opposite of fact and would make it very confusing. The poor guy is saying but everyone including the write did state humanity….. that is the whole point of the supposed conflict.

TheCK
TheCK
1 month ago
Reply to  Rolando

the comments literally are pointing to:

It’s amazing what you can do when you decide someone isn’t a person. which is straight from the comic strip.

and before you try some left wing nut rebuttal – person is defined as “a human being regraded as an individual”

I appreciate your retraction now that you have been educated………

what should really bother you is that I got 35 negatives and your lack of ability to actually read and comprehend got plus 21 🙂 again the ignorance can be a bit overwhelming

Nope Just here for one post
Nope Just here for one post
1 month ago
Reply to  TheCK

The whole point of all of this is that the definition of person is receiving redefinement. have you bothered to read and absorb the last half a year of stories you arrogant dick.

Jaysburn
Jaysburn
1 month ago
Reply to  TheCK

Ironic.

leduk
leduk
1 month ago
Reply to  TheCK

looks who failed school really hard

Pulse
Pulse
1 month ago
Reply to  TheCK

by your definition a fetus is nothing but a parasite and removing it shouldnt be a problem.

Casra
Casra
1 month ago

Oh the social commentary here for real life. Think of all the examples we can see daily of “it/they/them aren’t really people” that we see to justify bad acts. Every day. Wonder how many people can read this and then see their own, justifications?

087
087
1 month ago
Reply to  Casra

One person’s stolen wealth is another’s earned inheritance.

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Casra

There’s a fundamental difference between pointing at a human being and saying they aren’t really people, and pointing at a nonhuman being and claiming they are people.

In fact, they are opposite statements and this silly argument is just a false equivalency, all the more baffling because of the inherent opposition.

Timmeh
Timmeh
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

Thomas Jefferson literally created a group of scientists to prove that his slaves weren’t human. Like a separate species.

https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/002193479902900402?casa_token=K9mCCAVC_gIAAAAA:1oR3-AYW84QcZsJmwHcdRR_Kew_ctknSyT7c9nu9FPRw3os0EqFRoKXMdbQGaepbQqjUNO5bJvqGpg

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Timmeh

Yeah, that seems to have been a common belief at the time (though I’m not really sure what it has to do with my comment given that Zeke is not a human or even a species). You’ll still hear people defending it to this day, sadly, despite all evidence to the contrary. I can’t take a gander into Jefferson’s mind, but I’d guess he wasn’t evil, just convinced of this at the time. We should be careful to judge the idea, rather than judging the person. People throughout history have believed things with the same convictions that we hold our… Read more »

John H
John H
1 month ago

That last line is the clincher. Dehumanization allows for the worst atrocities.

Austyn
Austyn
1 month ago

While Scott is correct that Zeke isn’t (technically) a “person”, I do recall the words of a great semitruck; “Freedom is the right of all sentient beings”.

Kenju
Kenju
1 month ago

I would be very curious as to what Scott’s take would be on a situation where earth received visitors from another world, who happened to be entirely comprised of sentient machines, such as the Cybertronians.

How would his arguments stand in that case? They are built not born, but they have thoughts, make their own choices and decisions, have their own factions based on ideologies founded from their history as slaves, and are capable not only of displaying and acting on emotions, but empathy with organic beings.

leduk
leduk
1 month ago
Reply to  Kenju

damn, I had to google “cybertronians” then I felt stupid.

Kenju
Kenju
1 month ago
Reply to  leduk

No worries lol I suppose not everyone would catch what the name implies, but my point still stands. If you have an entire race of sentient machines (who in turn were created by sentient machines) does that not make them ‘people’ and each one a ‘person’?

As a wise man once said “It is life Jim, but not as we know it.”

Ashi
Ashi
1 month ago
Reply to  Kenju

A single android is, and forgive me, Commander, is a curiosity…a wonder even. But thousands of them…isn’t that becoming a race?

leduk
leduk
1 month ago

first step of nazism: saying those ppl arent person. And I’m not trolling or making a godwin: that’s literally how it happend.

Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago
Reply to  leduk

The whole “they’re inferior/lesser” is just that, too. Even when they don’t admit it, it has all the same end results and they know it. I mentioned it myself, in a few comments by now. That’s pretty much my reason to consider Scott the least correct here. I don’t care if there’s no legislation to cover for ZK’s existence yet. ZK is sentient and even has a human-like psyche and personality. That much is self-evident. And that means “person,” in the end. That’s what sets us humans apart, so it goes for ZK as well. Scott denying that, just proves… Read more »

Matthew Stanford
Matthew Stanford
1 month ago

Hey Tim! I’m quadriplegic and in a wheelchair, and as I understand from following the story, Scott is paraplegic. His chair, though, is pretty poorly done to the point of being lowkey offensive to WC users. It looks like he’s in a chair he got at the airport. The style of chair is fine enough (plenty of paras use that kind of chair, though it is not the most common), but it doesn’t fit him at all. That chair needs to be small enough that his hips come right up to those side guards. Here we can almost fit two… Read more »

Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago

I’m guessing he didn’t mean to be disrespectful. Not saying you’re ripping him apart or something, you’re just providing constructive criticism. I hope he sees this, and I comment in hopes that it increases visibility.

Matthew Stanford
Matthew Stanford
1 month ago
Reply to  Rolando

Oh absolutely! It’s not something I ever would have thought of until I was in the chair, so totally understandable. But it’s pretty easy to fix. Making Scott disabled was a nice, inclusive move. This would be another positive step.

Esc
Esc
1 month ago

There is a way to provide constructive criticism where you don’t say it’s “lowkey offensive”

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc

Dude, chill!

Chrispy
Chrispy
1 month ago

Not gonna lie…does scott have a slush fund for such a nice house?

Robert
Robert
1 month ago
Reply to  Chrispy

If he had accidental death and dismemberment though his work those policies are usually in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Plus possibly life insurance on Carly. It’s crass but it’s probably where he got the cash. Plus he’s clearly a genius level engineer. I’m sure he was/is well paid.

Esc
Esc
1 month ago
Reply to  Chrispy

They all live in ultra fabulous high rise apartments. From working at a game store.

It ain’t exactly 100% realistic.

Rolan7
Rolan7
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc

When you factor in the property damage done by high-level cape fights earlier in the story, I assume that there are superpowers which make construction faster and cheaper. That’s kinda a thing in the Wormverse too.
It’s a way to justify a cool metropolitan aesthetic without requiring months of renovation after every fight~

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc

I think very early on there was something about how Ethan ended up with that place on the cheap. Some sort of inheritance or lawsuit?

Him.
Him.
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

His parents left him the store after the Carrie incident. That they’re making money enough to live this comfortably does suggest that Scott’s work or severance may have been responsible for a good chunk of their income, but having the store to begin with is easily explained. Of course, maybe brick and mortar video game stores are culturally way more significant than in our world and Winter-Een-Mass draws as much cash to them as the entirety of Black Friday and Christmas would. It’s also probable the standard of living in this world is simply higher because a lot of jobs… Read more »

087
087
1 month ago

10/10 Love this comic, love this page, love all of you! I’ve had this argument a lot in real life. How you can’t just dehumanize people as ‘monsters’ because that’s exactly what people do to their victims. Once you dehumanize one group that easy way out spreads into your psyche until you can’t see yourself anymore either. Best example being Serenity when the assassin says the new world he’s killing for won’t have a place for him because, “I’m a monster”. I want to see Scott become a villain I think he’d be brilliant as a villain. His love gets… Read more »

Mr_Meng
Mr_Meng
1 month ago

Sorry but I just can’t agree with Ethan. He seems to subscribe to this rose tinted glasses belief where all life is precious and everyone deserves all the chances they need to change their mind and become good when that just isn’t true. There are legitimately bad people out there for whom there is no other way to stop them other than to kill them. Full stop. Some people have brought up The Troll and I consider them to be one of those people. The Troll liked hurting people and threatening their lives and he did it for no other… Read more »

Scott
Scott
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr_Meng

Regardless of whether someone is able to be rehabilitated or not, we should not stoop to their level. Killing someone who killed others is an eye for an eye. We are better than that (at least I’d hope that we are). I’m not saying we don’t prosecute them and remove them from society (a la prison), but if we allow a government to kill criminals, we’re saying it’s okay to murder people, and by any criteria I can’t get behind that.

Powell
Powell
1 month ago
Reply to  Scott

I look forward to you speaking to Nazis instead of shooting them during WW2

Ashi
Ashi
1 month ago
Reply to  Powell

The Nuremberg Trials would like to know your location.

Esc
Esc
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr_Meng

Even if you believe some people can’t be stopped unless you kill them…

Is SCOTT the sole arbitrator of who lives and who dies? Deathblood? Ethan? Anyone who “feels really strongly” about it?

We have a legal system for a reason.

GurrenLagann
GurrenLagann
1 month ago

See here is the real reason. Ethan thinks he has the Moral ground but in reality he is just a naive asshole and is forcing his view in others.

Those people that deathshot killed had no issue Killing Ethan over and over and over.

Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago
Reply to  GurrenLagann

And you somehow think that Scott and Deathblood aren’t doing the exact same thing you accuse Ethan of? Acting like they have the moral ground, and forcing their view on others? To varying degrees, of course. Last I checked, Scott and Deathblood force their view on others, to the point of MURDER. Ethan just ARGUES in favor of his position, but you see his TALK and DEMANDS as “forcing?” Yet you somehow don’t see that in bomb-using Scott, and “killing sprees” Deathblood? You need to look up “force” in the dictionary. You’re operating upside-down, here. If someone is ASKING something… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Rolando
Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago

To some of those disagreeing with Ethan: Can you please apply actual reason? I see many of you base your attempts to refute his more tolerant position, by claiming he’s “seeing them as saints” or “using rose tinted glasses.” (Literal examples in the quotes pretty much, btw.) WHEN did he ever do that? You’re exaggerating his position, taking it to an extreme it NEVER EVEN CAME CLOSE TO, just to pretend it’s totally wrong. *facepalm* To be 100% clear, Ethan is ok with VIGILANTE JUSTICE. He’s ok with PHYSICALLY ATTACKING CRIMINALS. How do I know this? Because he IS a… Read more »

Stein
Stein
1 month ago

Is Ultron a person? No he’s a computer program in a robot body. Zeke is the same thing, it’s a program that is adapting and learning. It’s also in a robot body.

End of story, people comparing real life and Artificial life need to remove your feelings and use logic and science based facts.

Ragnarok
Ragnarok
1 month ago
Reply to  Stein

Found the guy who gets murdered in every single ‘don’t be an asshole to new forms of life’ story.

Jaysburn
Jaysburn
1 month ago
Reply to  Stein

I bet you think animals aren’t sentient.

Esc
Esc
1 month ago
Reply to  Stein

here’s a science based fact: Ultron isn’t real! Neither is Zeke. I honestly don’t think we’ll ever have machine AI at that level ever be real

But if they were, they would be a real people, with rights.

Thx.

David K.
David K.
1 month ago
Reply to  Stein

Are you a person? No, you’re just a bunch of electro-chemical impulses stuck inside a sack of meat.

Personhood does not require being biological nor does being biological grant personhood. Flowers are biological. Milk is biological. So you grant them personhood too?

You shouldn’t complain about using facts and science when you don’t understand either yourself.

Robert L
Robert L
1 month ago
Reply to  Stein

Ultron was absolutely a sentient being (person) That doesn’t mean he didn’t still need to be killed. Now I’m not saying Zeke is like Ultron. Zeke’s only ever talked smack really. Ultron killed millions.

Phaet
Phaet
1 month ago

OR maybe if more people think that way, it means that Ethan is wrong.
Yeah I don’t believe it either.
I actually like this storyline. Makes people think.

Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago

Scott is his own worst enemy. He cannot even see the easy arguments in front of him. He could provide 100% solid explanations to treat ZK as extremely dangerous, without even going into the whole “what’s a person” existential debate. It doesn’t matter what ZK IS, but what ZK CAN DO. I do consider ZK a person, and I prefer Ethan’s tolerance. But, let’s face the facts: ZK has an enormous potential for danger. ZK’s personality, coupled with their vast talents and resources, can end up with many many people dead. That’s what makes ZK dangerous. Not the nature of… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Rolando
Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Rolando

So, I just spotted this comment and I always find this interesting because it’s a pretty common position. So let me put something forward to consider. Now when it comes to humans, we all have potential for danger. Some more than others, but all of us can go out there and murder someone. Yet, due to rights and corresponding notions conferred by personhood, nobody puts any limits on us unless we actually do. If we do, these rights can be restricted (such as being locked up in a storage r… err, prison cell). Some places still have death penalties, definitively… Read more »

Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

You just saw it, because I posted a bunch of times in this particular strip and the spam system held my comment for approval for a while. I understand your position. I see its logic. It’s not fallacious, as most positions I keep seeing. But you’re literally replying to someone else. I hope you realise. Some mistakes I didn’t make, that you refer to: 1) “Yet, when it comes to robots, even those who may theoretically rise to the level of personhood, summary execution seems to be a fine solution.” “Yet the second one of these beings steps out of… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Rolando
MarthKoopa
MarthKoopa
1 month ago

Can’t wait for the drawn out arguing to end so we can move on to the more fun stuff

Cragfast
Cragfast
1 month ago
Reply to  MarthKoopa

Fat chance. Remember 20 pages discussing pronouns?

Jaysburn
Jaysburn
1 month ago
Reply to  Cragfast

I really wonder what you’re like in person.

Phaet
Phaet
1 month ago
Reply to  Cragfast

I don’t. What’s there to discuss anyway?

Cragfast
Cragfast
1 month ago
Reply to  Phaet

Here you go: https://cad-comic.com/comic/identity-p1/

Hold on to your seat; it’s a real roller coaster.

Rolan7
Rolan7
1 month ago
Reply to  Cragfast

Gosh, that must have been like 8 months ago? 9 maybe?
I remember because someone had honest, respectful questions about my pronouns and we had a lovely conversation about it. It really got me thinking about stuff, and after about a decade of identifying as NB I finally started HRT. It is right for me to say the least <3

Esc
Esc
1 month ago
Reply to  MarthKoopa

This is the fun stuff.

MarthKoopa
MarthKoopa
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc

Not when it drags on and on

Esc
Esc
1 month ago
Reply to  MarthKoopa

Maybe webcomics aren’t for you.

Alcor
Alcor
1 month ago

Neither of these people realize you can’t logic someone out of emotions.

lightsabermario
lightsabermario
1 month ago

It’s crazy how much this argument mirrors legit non-hypothetical debates I have had with people, arguing whether something is or isn’t a life, and whether it’s acceptable to kill them.

Dom
Dom
1 month ago

I’m so loving the passionate discussions in the comments of this arc.

Michiel
Michiel
1 month ago

“Zeke isn’t a person” is a straw-man argument. Easy to counter. If anything, the better argument is that “Zeke spends a lot of his time threatening to kill or enslave humanity”. That at least would lead to an interesting discussion. 🤷‍♂️

Pulse
Pulse
1 month ago
Reply to  Michiel

he also shows the ability to learn and change both opinion and action with time and knowledge. that is more person then most people seem to be able to show.

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Michiel

Alright. Easy to counter. Consider, for a moment, that we can’t even objectively prove that other human beings have sentient minds like we do; a well known philosophical problem known as the “other minds” problem. In fact, consider that we can’t even prove that of ourselves; see the free will debate. Take note of the fact that we simply assume this, because of superficial similarities based on being of the species “human”. Now with that in mind show me how you easily counter that “Zeke is not a person”. I wonder how many times I’ll simply get to respond, ‘see… Read more »

Michiel
Michiel
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

The other minds problem is an argument for Zeke’s personhood, not against. We can’t prove any other human beings are sentient, and yet we still call them “person”. We don’t use the word to mean “someone whom I can prove is sentient”. We use it to refer to those who seemingly have a lived experience just like we do. We call each other “person” and grant each other certain rights, allowing us to make progress together. We can’t prove Zeke is sentient either, but he seems to have a lived experience, and the others can communicate and compromise with him… Read more »

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago
Reply to  Michiel

The real problem is a layer beneath that. We don’t have a definition of sentience or personhood. These terms are purely there to separate us from animals, thus giving us a moral code that morally allows slaughtering and enslaving animals, while granting humans quite extensive rights. In this framework, machines should never be granted human rights, since they are not human and thus we want to keep using them for our purposes and be able to turn them off whenever it doesn’t fit our needs. We don’t treat a monkey as sentient, even if it learns to “talk” using sign… Read more »

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Michiel

Sorry but you fundamentally misunderstand the other minds problem if you think it an argument for Zeke’s personhood. Weird thing is, I already pointed out the problem of this argument and still you write it. The other minds problem asks the question, of how we can know, based on observations of mere actions where the mind is impossible to directly observe, that any other being I perceive actually has a mind. Simply put, the question is, “how can I tell the difference between sentient behaviour and the appearance of sentient behaviour?” Your answer is, “because of the behaviour”. That’s begging… Read more »

Michiel
Michiel
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

Let me try to make it simpler: We can’t prove anyone is sentient. That puts Zeke and the humans around him on even footing where sentience is concerned. (Hell, sentience is such a vaguely defined notion I don’t even know if I have it myself.) All we ever have to base our decision on is observable behaviour. Sure, human physiology may give you an additional data-point. But if you would limit personhood to humans, in a world with intelligent aliens and human-like androids, that world would just leave you behind, just like our world left the Nazis behind. 🤷‍♂️ (Apologies… Read more »

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Michiel

Wow. Hitler already? Sorry but you can’t just repeat the just refuted argument and think it’s now a good argument :S. The other minds problem tells us that the appearance of sentience isn’t good enough to determine the existence of a mind, you can’t then just go “oh but let’s do that anyway”. There’s similarly no need to accept the assertion that Zeke is on equal footing with humans. Whatever the definition of personhood is it arises from our human configuration which is why we attribute it, even if we can’t prove it objectively, to other beings that have that… Read more »

Michiel
Michiel
1 month ago
Reply to  Dorander

> Now, I understand that’s the overall tactic of people in this debate who agree with you, they cherrypick a few words they consider sufficient for personhood, and ignore everything else. They then claim that they see those traits, ignoring the fact that they can’t actually tell. And when you disagree, you’re Hitler. Quick tip: If you want to have a cordial debate with somebody, start by assuming good intent, and maybe don’t straw-man their position. You’re giving the strong impression you’re not really trying to understand other people’s views, but are just here to win, and it’s off-putting (which… Read more »

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Michiel

I did assume good intent but it’s hard to keep assuming that when somebody, no matter how tacitly or implicitly, compares your position to that of Hitler. You even apologized for the comparison, which honestly does not help. It’s similar to how every time people start a sentence with, “With all due respect”, something inevitably disrespectful follows. So no, at that point I did no longer see the point in assuming good intent. There are easy ways to make a similar point without pulling a Godwin. As for “being here to win”, that’s really a meaningless statement and quite frankly… Read more »

Bobismeisbob
Bobismeisbob
1 month ago

The “he’s not a person” argument falls extra flat when you realize that what he did would be horrible if done to a dog or lab rat too.

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Bobismeisbob

Dogs and lab rats aren’t persons either. Having somebody express sympathy towards you does not qualify you for personhood.

We extend rights to animals, irrespective of their capabilities to fulfill any corresponding duties, out of compassion and generosity. If they turn out to be dangerous, they’re still put down, and nobody would ever seriously argue that the life of a dog or a lab rat equals that of a human. That’s why we hold one as a pet and use the other for experiments.

Jaysburn
Jaysburn
1 month ago
Reply to  Bobismeisbob

Oh man, if only you knew what kinds of things are done to lab rats.
Not saying you’re wrong, it’s absolutely awful stuff… But horrendous things are done to them every day.

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago
Reply to  Bobismeisbob

Nope, you aren’t right here. In most countries, dogs who seriously injure or kill people, will get put down. And that’s enforced by law.

Bobismeisbob
Bobismeisbob
1 month ago
Reply to  Jack0r

Yeah but they aren’t set up with an exploding collar that partly lobotomizes them.

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago
Reply to  Bobismeisbob

Nah, we just setup cows with cattle guns that outright kill them.

Or hang chicken by their feet and drag their heads through electric baths.

Or throw chicks into giant paper shredders.

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Bobismeisbob

Neither was Zeke, irrespective of the actual nature of the damage Zeke does not have a brain and therefor can’t be lobotomized by definition.

It’s also noteworthy that Zeke can’t feel pain. At least dogs and labrats have that going for them.

Foxhood
Foxhood
1 month ago

It is a weird Human quirk. History is bursting with examples of atrocities, exploitation and deplorable behaviour. Many of which having been justified by their perpetrators by arguing that what/who it was inflicted on was beneath them. Upper echelons of societies viewing those below as filth, Slavers viewing people as merely property or even animals, Humans treating animals as little more than automata rather than living creatures, Religious nuts viewing non-believers as heretics and that the will of their deity is above all others. The list never ends and probably: never will. The thing though. It isn’t easy to debate.… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Foxhood
David K.
David K.
1 month ago
Reply to  Foxhood

It’s not exclusive to humans, animals “other” each other too, packs of the same species will fight and kill each other after all. But they have an excuse, they don’t know better. We should.

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago
Reply to  Foxhood

That’s the thing: Every decent thing is a balance. Nothing, taken to the extreme, is even remotely good. And many people are sadly not grown-up enough to understand, that balance wins.

PersonalC0ffee
PersonalC0ffee
1 month ago

Bazinga but uh Ethan, didn’t you let the troll fall on purpose? Wasn’t he a person too?

Rolando
Rolando
1 month ago
Reply to  PersonalC0ffee

That’s most absolutely not a certainty, the “on purpose” part. Ethan is unsure of that. Considering he did try to pull the troll back to safety, and how Ethan is at his core… All evidence available suggests it was NOT on purpose. Ethan just doubts himself because he’s mature enough to do so, and his moral standards are clearly exacting enough for him to become a vigilante. Only fools are truly devoid of doubt. Also, whatever he did in the past doesn’t change the validity of any “person/not person” arguments going on right now. If that were true, only perfect… Read more »

Rolan7
Rolan7
1 month ago
Reply to  PersonalC0ffee

Maybe Ethan did, or thinks he did, and that’s why he’s extra-qualified to say that murder is bad. He’s experienced some fraction of the psychological stress of murdering a person.

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago
Reply to  Rolan7

Might be that he’s extra qualified to say that murder’s bad. But it also makes him extra unqualified to argue from the moral high ground and judge someone else for making a tough decision. In issue 1 he killed the leader of the robots (which he thought was human at that time) using a hand grenade. He dropped the Troll. He’s not in the right position to judge Scot here at all. (Btw: Hand grenades have a single purpose: maim and kill people. You don’t bring a hand grenade if you don’t plan on killing people. There is no way… Read more »

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago
Reply to  PersonalC0ffee

In issue 1 he had no problem killing 11 of Zekes brothers on screen.

Rolan7
Rolan7
1 month ago
Reply to  Jack0r

Those robots never acted like more than drones. I seem to remember even ZK indicated that they were extensions of ZK’s will, rather than puppets of the Master.

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago
Reply to  Rolan7

And how do we know that’s correct? How do we know, the remote control didn’t just override underlying sentience, as with Zeke?

Even better: When Ethan destroyed the leader of the drones, he thought, the leader was actually in charge. He even thought the leader was human. Yet he didn’t hesitate killing him.

GeorgeV
GeorgeV
1 month ago
Reply to  Jack0r

Depends on how you define ‘knowing’. We can’t know with absolute certainty, true. After all, we only have the pages that we’re shown and told, and no indicator of what’s true or what might be going on behind the pages. But from all the information we do have, there is nothing indicating those robots were sentient. They didn’t do anything unique, they didn’t have speech or anything resembling a sentient thought of their own. And it was even stated that they were remote controlled tools. It would’ve also made little sense for them to be sentient, as that’d both contradict… Read more »

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago
Reply to  GeorgeV

The leaderbot was speaking all the time. He was reacting to what our heroes said. He was looking no less sentient than Zeke or any human. Why should they think that one was anything less than a human (evidenced by Lucas saying something like “How did you know the leader was a robot?” to which Ethan responds with a very guilty expression)? Yet, Ethan didn’t go for non-lethal weapons, but brought a hand grenade. If you don’t plan on killing or at least seriously maiming people, why would you bring explosives? There is a reason why policemen aren’t usually armed… Read more »

Crestlinger
Crestlinger
1 month ago

Well good. If It is That easy:
‘Putin is not a person. Putin is not a person. Putin is not a person.’
There. Said three times on the internet. It’s true now! Who wants to see if he blends up into a red smoothie live?
Sadly that is all the justification some need, obvious fake news or not. And Those are the ones you really have to watch out for.

HA19
HA19
1 month ago

Hoo boy the comments certainly enjoy their black & white viewpoint on this story. Ethan’s running a false equivalency in this scenario on a situation that has quite a bit of gray area surrounding it.

To add because I’m willing to bet people will jump and assume I’m just “taking Scott’s side” neither side is in the right in this situation. That’s the fun of a complex scenario lol

Jin
Jin
1 month ago

As we debate ‘personhood’ – we should also consider that they are in a world full of people with special powers who could also technically be no longer considered purely human. Superhuman, if you would. Arguably some might be stronger or faster than Zeke, and maybe someone might be even infinitely smarter or able to process information quicker than them.

Regardless of how you feel about AI in our world, I feel the argument in theirs might actually have a significantly different context.

Rolan7
Rolan7
1 month ago
Reply to  Jin

Like Parahumans in the Wormverse, or mutants in the X-men (oh wow I JUST realized that could potentially be a pun for ex-human, though obviously it’s mainly extraordinary-human).
Most stories about sentient robots and weird capes aren’t actually about AI, they’re about people who have been dehumanized. Neurodivergent, or sometimes even just the poor and desperate.
I think Asimov’s stories were more about the consequences of sloppy coding, but most fantasy robots represent actual people.

Del Cox
Del Cox
1 month ago

And we finally get to the crux of the matter.

Urazz
Urazz
1 month ago

Yes, Zeke is a person, but Scott was also right as well. Or are we just going to ignore that he was threatening to kill humanity and such. Sure, you can argue that he was changing but that doesn’t change the fact that Zeke was still viable as a threat. Scott’s big mistake was to lie about removing the bomb to Lucas and Ethan. Lucas was pretty much the most balanced in his opinion that he was willing to give Zeke a chance to grow to no longer become a threat to humanity but he wasn’t going to let him… Read more »

Mr_Meng
Mr_Meng
1 month ago
Reply to  Urazz

Not only was Zeke threatening to kill humanity we already saw that he enjoyed killing Ethan, and enjoyed hurting Lucas when he was still under the control of the The Master. Not saying that he can’t or wasn’t changing for the better but that doesn’t change the fact that Zeke is an extreme danger to everyone around him.

Pyre
Pyre
1 month ago
Reply to  Urazz

It doesn’t help that, as a nigh-immortal member of a community that sees itself as above everyone else, Ethan is coming at this from the perspective of someone who has nothing at stake if he’s wrong.

This doesn’t make Scott’s actions right as Scott was taking the other extreme of confirmation bias. Scott kept talking about letting Zeke prove himself but refused to see any change that would contradict his initial hypothesis.

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago

Panel 2 uses the keyword: “taken to the extreme”.

There is not a single concept, that, taken to the extreme, is still ok.

“You eat meat? Taken to the extreme, that means you eat children!”

“You like to give to the poor? Taken to the extreme, that means you have to give your skin and flesh as well!”

And we see the same dumb kind of reasoning in real-world politics all the time… It’s a pretty dumb fallacy, tbh.

Mr_Meng
Mr_Meng
1 month ago
Reply to  Jack0r

Exactly. It’s a slippery slope fallacy that allows for no nuance or middle ground.

Scarsdale
Scarsdale
1 month ago

Scott doesn’t believe that Zeke was “alive” therefore he was in the right to be ready to kill him. Ethan spent the most time with Zeke and knew he was sentient which Lucas discovered when he talked to Zeke. Scott still refused to accept even after Lucas and Zeke both talked to him. Zeke was learning and had started to act like he did before the reboot. I think Zeke understanding that Ethan felt the pain and horror of each one of his deaths that he began to understand.

Esc
Esc
1 month ago
Reply to  Scarsdale

Acting on misinformation doesn’t make you “in the right” it just mitigates your responsiblity.

And truth be told Scott had plenty of time and evidence to learn that information. His willful ignorance doesn’t absolve him entirely of this.

Scarsdale
Scarsdale
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc

I wasn’t saying he was right, nor was I saying he was misinformed. He stated his reasoning and refused to hear anyone else’s opinions or facts on the subject. Plus he and Lucas lied to Ethan as far as the brain bomb in Zeke otherwise Ethan could of prevented this whole mess. Lucas knows what they did was wrong it’s now in Scott’s ballpark to admit he was stupid. He’s still making excuses and trying to make everyone see his point of view. And the sad thing is? They do, just not in the way Scott expects.

Travis
Travis
1 month ago

Killing is wrong, but Ethan is being a brat about this.

They made aistake and he’s gonna hold a grudge. That’s not heroic, it’s petty.

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago

I see a lot of confusion in the comments (and in the comic) regarding the connection between sentience, personhood and human rights. Human rights (e.g. the right not to be killed) are reserved only for humans. This includes all humans, no matter how sentient they are (e.g. mentally disabled people or babies might not fully qualify under the sentience-clause). Personhood, sentience and self-awareness are terms which are used to morally justify the line between beings who have human rights and those who don’t. Depending on whom you ask and when you ask (these terms have been around for millennia), all… Read more »

Esc
Esc
1 month ago
Reply to  Jack0r

Zeke isn’t human. So by any legal definition, he doesn’t have human rights. You’re utterly missing the point. It is obvious he deserves human rights because he is a person who thinks and feels exactly as much as a human being does. This is a piece of fiction, remember? With a fantastical impossible premise: a machine has gained sentience and personhood, entirely like real humans. You can’t just blindly apply our real world rules to it and say “it can’t be a person because here machines are just machines.” It’s like saying Harry Potter isn’t a wizard because in real… Read more »

Dorander
Dorander
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc

Actually, it’s just we as an audience who assume that Zeke has gained sentience and personhood, entirely like real humans. The only one who could state that with any authority is the author and as far as I know he hasn’t. Now being firmly on the other side of this debate, if Tim comes out and says “That’s what Zeke is” then fine, I’ll agree he’s a person. The author has complete authority (badum-pshh) over their comic. Until he does however, we have witnessed behaviour from Zeke and from that inferred that he’s a person. It’s an assumption on our… Read more »

Scarsdale
Scarsdale
1 month ago
Reply to  Jack0r

Star Trek S2 E9 “The Measure of a Man” says it very nicely. No this isn’t real, it’s entertainment. But it shows that we humans are just not ready to be part of the universe as a whole when we look at a lifeform and decide it’s worth based souly on if it’s something we can kill and eat or turn off. Here, you dropped your club, and don’t forget your fur loincloth…

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago
Reply to  Scarsdale

And yet, in real life we treat animals like property, which can be enslaved and killed at will, even if there is enough evidence that e.g. dolphins possess a smiliar amount of inteligence as humans. And we justify that with the made-up terms sentience, self-awareness and personhood. Break it down: Sentience has two meanings: (a) the capacity to have feelings and sensations (which applies to almost all animals) and (b) being a human. Self-awareness has two meanings: (a) knowing that you yourself exist and are separate from the rest of the world (which, according to Wikipedia even applies to many… Read more »

Jason Doege
Jason Doege
1 month ago

The gang members are endowed with person-hood by virtue of being human. It was yet to be determined if Zeke was a person.

Jack0r
Jack0r
1 month ago

… says the person who keeps using hand grenades to fight street crime.

Hand grenades cannot be used non-lethally in combat. Their only purpose is to maim and kill. If you bring hand grenades to combat, you are going for a kill.

(As exemplified by Ethan blowing up the leader of the robots in issue 1, even though he thought the leader was a human. What was the crime of the robots? Destroying some smartphones and a tablet. I guess, he deserved to die, or something.)

Sub to SkilledNub
Sub to SkilledNub
1 month ago

Glad to see the series is back