Call it the coolness factor. Blame the millennial mindset of convenience at all costs. Or shrug it off as a natural technological progression – the inability of a society to close a Pandora’s Box once it’s been opened. But what’s becoming increasingly clear is what used to be regarded as creepy and science fiction-like has now gone mainstream.
Take RFID technology. Formerly the stuff of animal identification chip implants, the technology’s now moved into the human hand. It’s not – as this headline from the mainstream CBS News shows – exactly a topic of underground discussion any longer.
“Meet the humans with microchips implanted in them,” the news organization reported in June, in a piece about a Minnesota software engineer who used his chip in his finger to control his smartphone and a Dallas woman who used hers to open doors at her place of work, in place of a key card.
The once-queasy technology seems destined now to grow popularity. Catholic Online may have recently written how “a microchip implanted on human beings has chilling implications, conjuring up images of the ‘Mark of the Beast’ as mentioned in the Book of Revelations.” But in the same article, it was noted at length: the boon for society from chip implant technology is being touted as just too good to pass up.
The genie’s out and he ain’t headed back to his lamp any time soon.
Fox News reported this, way back in 2014: “[For] soldiers and journalists in war zones, such an implant could be the difference between life and death. A chip implant could also help law enforcement quickly locate a kidnapped child, … help monitor the location of people with Alzheimer’s … track the activities of felons who have been released from prison.”
All good – inarguably so.
Meanwhile, on the convenience side, there’s this: Chip implants in hands could make it really fast to open a locked door, speed through a security checkpoint at the airport, to provide crucial medical information to emergency response officials. And don’t forget the quick-pay option. Rather than waste valuable seconds fishing into pockets or pawing through purses to find debit or credit cards – or even more archaic, personal checkbooks or cash – customers may one day be able to pay for purchases simply by flashing a hand over a scanner.
But technology doesn’t always mean convenience. Just ask somebody whose computer’s been hacked, or car alarm’s been activated. Technology also doesn’t always mean progress. Sometimes it brings loss of personal freedom, and opens the door for government intrusion and control.
This, also from Fox News: “Chips are being used today to manage farm animals. Farmers can track sheep, pigs and horses as they move through a gate, weigh them instantly and make sure they are eating properly.”
Never mind the imagery from George Orwell’s “Animal Farm” that passage brings to mind. The real question that emerges is this: Is any technology that’s being used to manage farm animals really something that human beings, created in the image of an omniscient, omnipresent God, ought to be volunteering to implant? Common sense says no. The constitutionally wise say heck no. And those of faith with fears of taking the “Mark of the Beast” should stick with their instincts: The chip itself may not be satanic, but the road it could lead to sure doesn’t pass the smell test of the discerning.
Cheryl Chumley, a writer, speaker and journalist, is the author of the 2016 release, “The Devil in D.C.: Winning Back the Country From the Beast in Washington,” available now on Amazon, and of “Police State USA: How Orwell’s Nightmare Is Becoming Our Reality.” She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or through her blog, cherylchumley.blogspot.com, or at Twitter @ckchumley.
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