WEF: ‘Solid, Rational Reasons’ to Implant Microchips in Kids
Claiming “augmented reality” technology “has the ability to transform society and individual lives,” the World Economic Forum recently suggested there are “solid,” “rational” and “ethical” reasons to consider implanting children with microchips.
According to an article published this month on the WEF website, “Implant technologies could become the norm in the future” and they “form part of a natural evolution that wearables once underwent.” The article’s author, Kathleen Philips, said there are “compelling” arguments in favor of microchipping humans. For example, implant technologies could supplant the role currently played by ingestible pharmaceutical products, could help dyslexic children or could “sniff out” food allergens or illnesses such as COVID-19, Philips said. For example, implant technologies could supplant the role currently played by ingestible pharmaceutical products, could help dyslexic children or could “sniff out” food allergens or illnesses such as COVID-19, Philips said.
The potential benefits of these “amazing technologies,” Philips said, are endless — limited only by “ethical arguments” rather than “scientific capacity.”
Philips is vice president of research and development for imec, a Belgian company that describes itself as “the world-leading R&D and innovation hub in nanoelectronics and digital electronics.”
According to the WEF, Philips’ article has been “intentionally misrepresented on sites that spread false information,” adding that “misrepresenting content diminishes open conversations.”
According to Philips, while “superheroes have been dominating big and small screens for a while,” nowadays, “many children expect to develop superpowers themselves.”
Suggesting implant technology has the potential to deliver such “superpowers,” she argued, “Technology has always had the potential to transform society and improve our daily and professional lives” — and augmentation technology is no exception.
How does Philips define “augmentation”?
According to Philips:
“Augmentation can be defined as the extension of rehabilitation where technological aids such as glasses, cochlear implants or prosthetics are designed to restore a lost or impaired function.
“Augmentation” technology “will help in all stages of life: children in a learning environment, professionals at work and ambitious senior citizens,” Philips argued. “There are many possibilities.”
Not only will the technology “become more intertwined with the body in the form of implants,” Philips said. “It will also seamlessly integrate with the environment,” she said, citing examples such as “sensors in a chair.”
The technology is simply part of “a natural evolution that wearables once underwent,” Philips said, arguing that “hearing aids or glasses no longer carry a stigma” but are “accessories and are even considered a fashion item.”
“Likewise,” claims Philips, “implants will evolve into a commodity.”
She also suggested that “brain implants take us one step further” by allowing us to “tap straight into the body’s ‘operating system,’” arguing such technology is already being used to “mitigate symptoms of epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease or depression.”
As an example of “medical necessity,” Philips noted that “electrical stimulation of the vagus nerve, the superhighway that originates in the brain, is rumoured to be a miracle therapy for treatment-resistant depression.”
‘Solid, rational reasons’ to ‘implant a tracking chip in your child’
For Philips, only “ethical arguments” can limit the encroachment of implantable technologies into our daily lives — and bodies.
Posing the question, “Would you walk around with a chip in your head?” Philips argued chips are no different than “hearing aids or pulse monitors,” or “smart goggles, phones, wristbands and the like.”
Posing another hypothetical question, she asked, “Should you implant a tracking chip in your child?” “There are solid, rational reasons for it, like safety,” she said.
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