You Can't Have Just One
Yesterday, the Times Online reported that a British secondary school was conducting an experiment. The administration was tracking students by embedding microchips in their clothing. On the teachers’ computers, the chip provides information on what classroom the student is supposed to be in, the student’s academic performance, and allows retrieval of the student’s photo. The chip also allows a student’s whereabouts to be known and can be used to “restrict access to areas of the school.”
Action on Rights for Children reports that, a leading British school uniform maker, Trutex, is “actively exploring” adding chips to their product to allow parents information on their offspring’s location.
Like the well-known potato chip ad, having just one of these will be impossible. School uniforms are the beginning. Once children learn how to disable the chips (microwave on high), parents’ and school systems will be trying to implant them directly into children’s bodies. The more people can control, the more they want to control—Orwellian society, here we come.
However, as a parent I know the real value of embedding chips in kid’s clothing is not to know where the kid is but where the clothing has disappeared to. I wish I had had these chips in all the coats, mittens, and socks that my offspring have been unable to locate over the years. For awhile, we were going through three coats per kid per year.
In fact, now that I think about it, I need chips for my clothing, too. I could finally find the laundry demon that has been stealing socks and leaving their mates lonely. In fact, I want chips for my money. I haven’t been keeping a close eye on it very well lately either. And if these chip makers can find a way to implant them in feelings,I could use some help. I’m constantly losing my temper and my patience.
But for kids, well, I think we’re better off building personal relationships rather than impersonally supervising them.