Dang it! Just as I declare that instant mobile voice and data communication is a basic utility, my neighbor Dr. David Newquist says electronic media have become lethal to humanity:
Cases of bullying among school age childlreln and among adults involving internet posts have resulted in numerous suicides. The internet has become a huge force in the human environment through computers, tablets, and cell phones. Many people devote the better part of their day to being online, so that the Internet becomes a major influence in their communication and thinking, in fact a dominant part of their consciousness. My colleagues who are still active professors note that the occupation of students with Internet sites is a formidable impediment to the development of critical intelligence. Students are so caught up in the blizzard of information that they are dysfunctional about separating accurate, verifiable information from the misinformation and disinformation. Cable news, talk radio, “reality:” television, and tabloid journalism have created a population that has lost the capability of critical thinking, of distinguishing between truth and falsehood. In fact, many people no longer care and simply fit into the trends of their electronic environment with no regard for what is intellectually and morally defensible [David Newquist, “How Electronic Media Became Lethal to Humankind,” Northern Valley Beacon, 2016.06.06].
As usual, Newquist’s full essay is worth the read, connecting this technological phenomenon (which is a big part of who I am and what I do) to “the softening of the mass mentality,” a resurgence of racism, and the rise of Trumpism.
Maybe Pollock is better off without that cell phone tower.