I had an interesting and perhaps terrible thought this morning. I was reading an article in my favorite tech publication about David Levy, the man who was defeated by Deep Blue in a game of chess to the tune of $5,000, whose current interest is in the development of the “sexbot.” Silly, it may sound to some; to others an answer to prayer. He tells about what a service to the lonely a perfected sexbot would be. As their AI grows superior and their artificial flesh more realistic, he sees a bright future for the lonely and powerless among us, the socially awkward, the sexually pathetic. As I read on, I had to stand back and ask myself about the relevance of such a device. True, to the lonely and forlorn of our modern society, it would mean the answer to one of the greatest interpersonal challenges that these people have to over come. As easy as it would be to simply relegate the sexbot to this desperate arm of our society I have to pause and ask that if these things were able to truly be THAT realistic, the implication may be much further reaching than can and should be simply written off as a sad human (or should I say inhuman) joke.

If realistic enough, these devices could be used in the study and perhaps therapy of the rapist and the sexual deviant. It could hold the key to the cheating spouse or the sexually unsatisfied. Among other giggle-worthy things, the sexbot could be enlisted in, shall we say, stamina training. Granted I don’t necessarily believe we will see a device sophisticated enough any time soon, yet I can’t help but think the greatest threat of the sexbot will be to women themselves.

Though women are more than capable of having any privilege that men enjoy, all too often they resort to sex to procure the power that they desire. The sex bot has the potential to be the nuclear deterrent in the battle of the sexes. It has the power to turn the sexual war of the roses into the gender cold war. From the fall of man, women have stockpiled the weapons of the sex war. Men once ruled the roost, and women found their power through the influence of the men in their lives. As women have won their independence and rightfully stand as equals in a world once ruled by men alone, they never gave up the power of sex. In our now modern society women find themselves with the best of both worlds; equality and sexual exclusivity.

All that said, sex is much more than an emotional expression. It stands with food and shelter as one of our inherent instinctual drives. We essentially have to pursue sex as part of our mental and emotional health. The deprivation thereof can be detrimental to social interactions and general well being.

Now I can’t say that I would like to live in that society as such, but I can’t help but to give it some thought. Is sex so simple? Is it so complex? Is the power of sex just a perception in itself that will change on its own with time? So the question I pose is this: What would a society where the power of sex is greatly diminished look like, specifically where the keys are no longer exclusively in the hands of women? And is the sexbot just the tool to do it?