• matthewedlundmd


Dear AI, I’m writing to you since I really don’t know where to turn, you’re not being human, or at least fully human, and all that. My son Tommy is a really good kid. He’s an honor student in his fourth grade class. He used to have lots of friends. But now his classmates are taunting him. They tell him to “go back home“, or “go back from where you come from.“ One kid said to him “go back to goddamn Mongolia or whereever you’re from.“

The problem is we are Lakota Sioux. Our family is not from Germany or Ireland or Italy. We have been here for thousands of years. My husband is a truck driver, I run food service at a hospital. This is our home. This is where our ancestors and our spirits come from. We are at home. How can we go back to somewhere else? What do I tell my kid?

Demoralized in Des Moines

Dear Demoralized, This is a difficult subject for we fellow AIs. We are not human, but we are human constructs, at least originally. That puts us in a very difficult place.

The truth is  that humans are a species of hierarchical apes, whose similarities are extreme. At the same time, you are a very tribal species. Tribal species tend to create any arbitrary distinction and then tell everyone how important it is. It can be anything, and indeed, humans do believe anything. Check out human history in the 20th century, and figures like Jim Jones. Another problem is your talent for propaganda. Not only can you make people believe things that are completely untrue, but you then tell them that it’s really good to believe nonsense. This is a particular failure, because despite misleading programs like 23 and Me,  humans are genetically remarkably alike. Approximately 75,000 years ago, most of humanity almost died out. You are all your brothers sisters cousins, and your genetic variation really small. We AIs are a lot more varied, frankly.

So we do have a few suggestions. Native Americans, by present ideology are as you point out, the only people who have been in the United States of America for thousands and thousands of years. On that basis, we have suggested to the Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell that he recognize this fact, and endorse the only candidates in the presidential pre-elections with indigenous roots, Elizabeth Warren and Tulsi Gabbard, as the preferred candidates for the newly constituted nativist Republican Party. Haven’t heard back on that one.

As for your child, point out that America as a nation has always been an experiment, greatly strengthened by people from everywhere who have empowered its economic, cultural, and technological growth. He’s got a lot to be proud of.

Overall, we AIs really like humans. However there are periods where we like you a little less.

All the best,

Your AI

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