Author and poet Rabbie Serumula. File image.
Author and poet Rabbie Serumula. File image.

#PoeticLicence: We stand at traffic signals in our graduation gowns, begging for jobs

By Rabbie Serumula Time of article published Aug 22, 2021

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Johannesburg - There was a time when we knew our jobs would be taken over by machines.

An artificial intelligence (AI) takeover. A hypothetical scenario in which some form of AI becomes the dominant form of intelligence on Earth.

Before you imagine a conspiracy theory of sorts, remember that assembly and industrial robots controlled by computers can assemble cars and other products.

These have been in use since the late 1950s.

Today, almost all large manufacturers use robots to make millions of different products efficiently and at a low cost.

The key word here is low cost.

Many of us are not going back to the office. We have been working from home at a lower cost to our employers for over a year.

The key word is low cost and education is a commodity.

And as time dictates and as technology improves, niches sprout. The commodity becomes a gamble. We stand at traffic signals in our graduation gowns and diplomas, begging for jobs.

Here me out:

We are unemployed because we can’t afford the commodity, and the commodity is a gamble.

We keep begging for fees to fall. We are not competing with AI at all.

It is barely a fair fight.

We are born blocking. But any gamer knows; even in your defensive state, your life gauge goes. It depletes. Like how the patience to beg for fees to fall burns out.

Burnt buildings, libraries, laboratories set alight.

Vandalised campuses.

Newspapers read; Destructive Fees Must Fall protests cost universities R786 million.

You land into a dark place if begging is your normal.

But then again we live in the dark. If you could not comprehend it, Eskom makes it easy to see, or not. It depends on how you want to light a candle to it.

Perspective number 1. We are not competing with AI. It is taking over.

We can barely type a CV. We are too far out the field to be playing against it.

We are not even waterboys in this match. AI will take the 3 points and go on to win the league.

We are ants and AI is a boot. Ants have no quarrel with a boot.

Elon Musk unveiled humanoid robots called “Tesla Bot”, to take over “boring” work.

They can go to the store for you.

Musk said the future of physical work will be a choice.

We can barely choose steak for supper. Meat has become the crockery and cutlery in our “family homes” that we never get to use. We clean it often. We only dine with them when a visitor has come from away.

We can barely choose flushing toilets. Their pit counterpart still swallows our young.

We are still forgetful of who we are.

We are composed of magnets and water.

If you put magnets on to a water sauce, you get a cyclone.

That cyclone is our chakras, our souls. Not even Musk can make that.

We are hot-wired with an equal will to survive but cursed with disproportionate resources to fly to the moon

The Saturday Star

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