What We’re Watching: Zambia warns against anti-LGBTQ protests, AI scares tech leaders
Zambia warns against anti-LGBTQ protests ahead of Harris’s arrival
Zambia’s President Hakainde Hichilema is warning against anti-LGBTQ protests ahead of US Veep Kamala Harris’s visit Friday, part of a three-nation Africa tour aimed at shoring up US relations across Africa.
While in Lusaka, Harris will (virtually) address the Summit for Democracy, a Biden-crafted international conference designed to bolster democratic institutions and norms amid rising global authoritarianism. But dozens of Zambian opposition MPs claim the summit also aims to introduce gay rights to the country.
The opposition Patriotic Front Party reportedly plans to hold protests before the summit, but Hichilema has called for calm and for a dialogue with his opponents. Earlier this month, he vowed to maintain Zambia’s laws criminalizing consensual same-sex acts, which carry a life sentence.
This isn’t the first time gay rights have come up during Harris’s tour. In Ghana, she noted that LGBTQ rights are human rights but did not discuss the proposed Ghanaian bill to criminalize LGBTQ identification and advocacy. Harris’s visit also follows Uganda’s adoption last week of a draconian law that criminalizes identifying as LGBTQ, which could involve the death penalty in some cases.
Is AI getting too smart, too fast?
Yes, according to billionaire Elon Musk and over 1,000 other artificial intelligence luminaries, who've published an open letter calling for a six-month "pause" on further AI development. Why? So it doesn't threaten humanity by creating digital minds so powerful that they can't be controlled by humans.
But perhaps "humanity" is code for white-collar jobs. After all, Goldman Sachs just warned that AI could put up to 300 million people out of work in a decade. Most at-risk jobs are desk gigs, not blue-collar manufacturing jobs we once thought would be wiped out by automation.
Should that be more or less important than stopping AI from automating political misinformation in social media? And what if China takes advantage of the pause to beat the US in the AI race? Let us know your thoughts on taking an AI break here.