Technology is to the service of the Man or its destruction?
Let me guess -- English is not your first language. It is the
phrase 'the Man' that intrigues me -- it is perfect, and yet I have
never seen it before. I have seen 'the tiger' and 'the elephant'
and 'the crocodile', to name but a few species, but never before
'the man'. Congratulations! I shall use it myself henceforth.
Before I answer this question, I will say that what follows is
not universally accepted. The currently most powerful man in the
world, the President of the United States does not accept it, for
one. There are others.
When you ask "Is technology in the service of the man, or its
destruction?', I will assume you mean 'high technology' or 'modern
technology'. I have to assume that, because up until relatively
recently the man has been very successful on this planet, rising to
be its most powerful mammal (I deliberately exclude reference to
insects, bacteria and viruses in making this claim). Technology has
been the most useful process available to the man in achieving this
position since time immemorial.
But more recently technology has been key in giving this mammal
the means of damaging the planet, and the means of its own
destruction. True, it had earlier destroyed other species by
extinction -- this was achieved by hunting, by removal of living
areas, and other unintentional means. Once not long ago the man had
the power to deliberately make the bacillus that causes smallpox to
go extinct, but in the event it decided not to.
Powers such as those described below have never been available
to the man before. It is unlikely (but not impossible) that the
man's extinction would be deliberately sought using these powers,
but it is worrying to note that species extinction has happened
unintentionally in the past. Another worry is that such powers have
never been available to any other species on Earth either (at least
that the man knows about) -- this is something new. Therefore there
is no possibility of studying this phenomenon.
I will call technology since the start of the Twentieth Century
'modern technology', or MT for short.
MT includes not only weapons of mass destruction (WMDs to give
them a more fashionable, less terrifying, name), but also the means
of changing the Earth in such a way that it will warm
uncontrollably. These are the dangerous powers, the ones that can
cause the man to go extinct. Of course MT also includes much else
that seems good, as well, including the Internet by means of which
you and I are now communicating. However no amount of good things
can justify extinction, so we may safely ignore them in this
Can MT be the cause of the man's extinction? The answer is "yes
And it will if the man does not recognize this quickly enough.
It is already too late to avoid some damage from one of these
powers. It is happening already in destructive weather changes.
Global Warming is proceeding at a rate never before seen in any
evidence available to the man. Not only the man, but the tiger, the
elephant and the crocodile may go too.
ANSWER Guns don't kill people, people kill
ANI Answer Too much of anything is a bad thing.