God and the App Wars
On the off-chance that anyone out there is looking for further evidence that our cultural discourse is being seriously degraded and trivialized by the proliferation of technology, an article in yesterday’s New York Times alerted readers to the availability of iPhone apps to help believers and non believers arm themselves for war. There are anti-Darwin apps for Christians, “Bible Thumper” apps for atheists, and others, no doubt, each doing what all apps are designed to do: provide entertainment, “illumination,” and diversion as quickly, and with as little demand to think for oneself, as possible.
Here’s a quote from the article:
In a dozen new phone applications, whether faith-based or faith-bashing, the prospective debater is given a primer on the basic rules of engagement — how to parry the circular argument, the false dichotomy, the ad hominem attack, the straw man — and then coached on all the likely flashpoints of contention. Why Darwinism is scientifically sound, or not. The differences between intelligent design and creationism, and whether either theory has any merit. The proof that America was, or was not, founded on Christian principles.
Users can scroll from topic to topic to prepare themselves or, in the heat of a dispute, search for the point at hand — and the perfect retort.
Perfect. Just what we need—a bunch of eager-beaver believers and non believers feverishly scrolling across screens, mining the GBs of their precious iPhones in a desperate attempt to score points for or against God.
Perhaps an app for dealing with over-reliance on apps is forthcoming. I’m sure Steve Jobs is hard at work on that one…