Our technology amazes and frightens the heck out of me.
The nonstop media coverage of the recent two-man terrorist rampage in Boston has provided a chance to assess what we’ve seen and heard. Basically, a bunch of live-for-nothing, nobody, hate-life thug brothers got together and committed atrocious mayhem, on a suicide mission because they cared only for themselves, leaving countless precious, respected lives in ruins.
What’s amazing though is the number of cameras and video players assembled in one place at one time. The FBI didn’t take long with all their mind-blowing procedural technology to come up with the perpetrators in a few days. A heartfelt thanks to the everyday people who amassed thousands of photos capturing just about every second of the event on Patriot Monday.
It makes you wonder.
It would appear that literally everything we say, do, participate in, and abstain from is recorded.
Has the camera become that candid?
“There is no privacy left in our society,” said Tom Brokaw on Meet the Press on April 21. During the show, the panelists, the talking heads of news for our society, joined in and commented about how, if you are in London (or New York City or any big city or even a mid-sized town for that matter), you are being filmed and photographed by a lot of agencies and people. Everything you do is tracked on closed-circuit TV or with some lens hooked up to digital recorders.
Peggy Noonan, Wall Street Journal columnist, noted that “we have lost our innocence,” as if we ever really had it in these days of digital videography and photography.
So, the rather frightening part:
Winston Smith, that 39-year-old helpless guy in George Orwell’s novel 1984, published in 1948, is all of us now. You turn a corner, the camera’s on! You look up at the street sign, smile for the lights! You want to attempt murder and mayhem? Just remember we are not only going to track you, we will amass so much evidence you might as well die at the scene of the crime – because, in the end, as you while away your decades in a solitary cell (or worse) you will wish you had.
Wait – the camera is watching you in the cell, too!
This begs the point:
Study war no more.
Learn to live in peace, because we are literally, with every move we make, creating a tide of consequences that cannot be brought back. We are all so close to each other with our social media and Facebook and Twitter and all the rest, that we are almost literally “in bed” with each other, one way or another.
We might as well smile as the family of humanity. We might as well work together. The candid camera is making us one. Like it or not, we are all right here. Say cheese!