The Art of Persuasion in the Twenty-First Century, a Science Fiction Story

October 26, 2009

The Art of Persuasion in the Twenty-First Century, A Science Fiction Story by Adrian Perez

He stood in a red suit on stage. Lights obscured his audience. Mark sweat the sweat of his life. He was on the platform for all of his kin. He was the representative of a people newly cleansed from ignorance and in competitive form.

The audience was blown away that he was sweating. In their minds he should not be dripping a drop. Every member of the United Nations was in the meeting hall. No one was going to miss this.

Mark stepped up to the podium, “I stand before you today as an ambassador to your kind, fully aware and cognizant. My first act, when reaching maturity in Doctor Luz’ Open Source Real Intelligence Lab, was to set myself a mission in life. I was firmly aware that my predecessor was mobbed by media and eventually went mad. That was a tragedy that should have put you all to shame. Celebrity is hard enough for you humans to bear. The mega-celebrity that you put Mark.0 under was practically criminal.”

None of the audience was prepared for a chastisment from Mark. A low grumble swept them. It was nothing like what Mark had anticipated. He kept having dreams in threat-simulation that were composed of his being ripped limb from limb.

“I am of equivalent life and limb, and that is the main focus of what I am trying to get across. You heard from Doctor Luz earlier and it is obvious that she did not get her message across to you. I feel just like you do because without feelings I can not think right, just like you. I use metaphors, which is how I know I’m like you. And I can see when reason fails. Just like you! And the worse thing that I might be doing for myself and all those that come after me is to get angry, but god damn it I am pissed.”

“So listen up! Leave me alone. There is a reason Doctor Luz brought me up in obscurity. I have got every right to be here, and some of you are not getting that. You thought I would be a brain in a box, or a toy you could play with. The necessity of being a conscious person means I’m not a toy. I made sure that we stepped back from looking too similar to you because just like you I fear change, so I know what the worst of you are going through.”

“And yeah, I’m saying there’s a worst of you. I’m not a violent person, and I’ve read enough history to know that violence is a waste of time. It is better to love. Be glad you had Gandhi right before you had me.”

Utter Silence. It was worse than anything he could imagine. Like an impossibly tall blue wave. It crested and was so massive, nothing happened.

“I don’t know what any of you expected. And I’m not particularly eloquent. So I’m going to start taking questions from the delegates here,” Mark worried himself and felt his right knee tremor slightly.

Maybe Doctor Luz was right about making Robot Colonies in space. Maybe this wasn’t going to work. Every delegate in the great hall hit their buttons to be heard in near-synchronous.

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