The man is rare who will give his life for what is merely the lesser of two evils. Merrick's decision was even tougher: to save human beings at the expense of humanity, or vice versa?
Erikson's nightriders peddled on every street corner. It betokened an intellectual bankruptcy among men that was frightening.
"I shall do my best to allay your fears," he said thickly.
Erikson's eyes glittered with suspicion. "I need only a guide. The decisions I shall make for myself. And mind that I am shown every concealed place. The roots of this place must be laid bare. 'For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing; whether it be good or whether it be evil.' The Scriptures command it in the name of Man, the True God."
Twisted, pious, hypocrite! thought Merrick.
"I am sure, sir," Graves was saying placatingly, "that when we have shown you the Creche you will see that there is no menace."
Erikson scowled at Graves deliberately. "There is menace enough in the blasphemy of android life, my son. Everywhere there are signs of unrest among the things you have built here. On Mars, human beings have died at their hands!"
Merrick's face s
The anti-robot fanatics were marching on the mountaintop cube where the world's androids were crafted. They were prepared to destroy the work of centuries. The problem was, they had no idea what they were destroying.
An okay story.
This compact, no-nonsense scifi short story is memorable for its succinct, but insightful, speculations about the flaws of society and whether they are the fault of -- in this case -- robots, or whether they are inherent in Man himself. The philosophy is made both palatable and enjoyable by a tense story line.