Saturday, April 23, 2011

Schoolwork: Neo-Luddism vs Technophilia

What do you feel are the determining factors that make one person a Neo-Luddite and another a Technophile?

I need to break this down a bit further. Not only are there Neo-Luddites and Technophiles, there are people who stand in the middle between them. The question, then, is more: What draws people to lean in toward one side or the other?

Leaning away from the middle indicates dissatisfaction with the world the way it is. Technophiles want the world to be more digitized, mechanized, while Luddites and Neo-Luddites want the reverse. A large part of this is upbringing, and not necessarily in the sense of the "have-nots" turning to Luddism and the "haves" turning to Technophilia.

I am reminded of the story of two boys raised by their alcoholic father. (Warning, this is very much paraphrased.) One boy grew into a man who shunned alcohol, never drank a drop in his life, and when asked why, said "I saw how it destroyed my father and didn't want the same to happen to me." His bother, on the other hand, grew into an alcoholic too; his reasoning was "I learned on my father's knee how to drink."

The children of Neo-Luddites may become Technophiles, and vice versa. There's no rule that says they breed true, all the same. So how could it have to do with upbringing?

A child who sees its parents consumed negatively by a behavior or belief is less likely to grow up agreeing to that belief. Whether that behavior or belief is alcoholism, Luddism, or Technophilia makes no difference. Even when it comes to the "haves" and the "have-nots," I feel the same policy applies. Whereas a child who sees that behavior or belief in a positive light is more likely to follow in their footsteps.

And with regards to the second question: What ideas might you put forth to help shrink the divide between the "haves" and the "have nots?"

I say it again: Parental dissatisfaction.

Remember again, the question is presenting two extremist side of a very large group of people, and there are plenty of people who stand in the middle. 

I sit in the middle. I was fortunate to be raised by parents who are closer to the have-side than the have-not-side, so I have access to a lot of things that someone born closer to the have-not-side doesn't. That's not to say, however, that my parents give everything to me. I work hard for a lot of the things that I have, and it is through my hard work that I continue to enjoy the things I have. Sure, my family helped me get in the door, but that's it. All the rest was and still is, up to me.

I don't want to be my parents. There are many aspects of them that I don't like, and don't want to become of them myself. Parental dissatisfaction.