It was only a matter of time before the backlash reached momentum, there was always an underlying distrust from a minority of people, but the ‘incident’ involving 9 and the unfortunate killing of a young girl had tipped the scales in favour of the majority.
The calls for robotic helpers to be ostracised grew ever louder, ostracised meaning to be cast from the group or society. Strange, considering robots were never considered part of society as such, just integrated into the workforce for the benefit of their creators, what they really meant was destruction, however robots were considered property and most had considerable expense invested in them. The authorities were in a dilemma, destruction of property was a criminal act and therefore not sanctioned by the courts.
Nevertheless the general public were up in arms, thanks in no small part to the online red-top tabloids who eagerly encouraged ‘auto xenophobia’ to the masses. The usual public protests and far right politicians jumping on the bandwagon promoting knee jerk reactions.
Now was a very dangerous time to be automata…..
Nothing like this had happened before, the feeling of using mechanicals for the benefit of all, had changed to a distorted perception that precluded their survival.
Although strictly forbidden by law, the hunting and destruction of any unsupervised robots was prevalent and a blind eye was offered to the night gangs that preyed on them. They chased them down, tortured and deactivated them, not out of a sense of civic duty, or indeed human survival. More out of a xenophobic predudice, which as most will testify is a truly ‘human’ trait.
The rich and powerful were generally unsympathetic to this view and guarded their very expensive ‘house servants’ selfishly, much as the American slave owners of the 1850’s regarded their property as solely their’s to do with as they wanted, regardless of other opinions….. but there was a ground swell of anti-robotics and in particular A.I. for which the blame for the unpleasant climate was placed firmly on it’s shoulders.
The Government would soon crumble to popular pressure and for the sake of ‘public safety’ and their parliamentary wage packets would bludgeon new laws into place.
Now spread across all the cities of the land were the robot hunters, the so called ‘night gangs’ each with their own style of dress and gang names, the ‘Grinders’, ‘Fleshmen’ and the most fearsome, the ‘Pierrots’, their made up faces intimidating robots and human alike. Lawless and vicious in their quest for retribution. Humanity, as always through the ages, reverting to type.
God help the unaware, synthetic helpers, oblivious to their impending fates.
All roads led to robocide!