The Screen Age

I enjoy gadgets as much as the next guy but a series of events this past weekend convinced me the incivility of others misusing them threatens our pursuit of happiness, our liberties, and our very lives; in other words, all the things our society was founded upon, if I may be so dramatic.

Because my wife had Good Friday off we headed out to view a matinee showing of the uplifting movie Heaven Is For Real, a faith-based film focused on high-minded themes like uh, heaven and eternal life, for instance. Such topics surely would bring out the best in one’s fellow men, or at least fellow moviegoers, wouldn’t you think? Well, think again!

Before we even entered the theatre complex itself a “screenager” fixated on his smartphone acted anything but smart by walking right into me, so I suggested he watch what he was doing, which he summarily sloughed off without so much as an apology.

Once inside the theatre, the one where they play repeated reminders to turn OFF all devices, a woman sitting in front of us insisted upon checking her smartphone several times during the movie until I politely asked her to stop, at which point she reluctantly did so. Suffice it to say that smartphones and stupid people do not mix.

I once heard a clever turn of phrase suggesting that an “ipodectomy” be administered to people dependent on iPods and other such devices. Either that or a lobotomy, I think. The thing I’ve come to realize is that technology simply amplifies who we are as people. If one acts rudely without an iPhone, one is likely to act more so with one. And movie going is the least of our issues when so many distracted drivers threaten our safety with their thoughtlessness. Heaven IS for real and we need to act like it here on earth by not being so selfish using our devices.