Finland, sporting one of the most frequently admired education systems in the world, is planning to abolish the teaching of handwriting in schools. “Fluent typing skills are an important national competence,” Minna Harmanen, from the Finish National Board of Education, is quoted as saying.
In the meantime, German Chancellor Merkel is making a renewed push to store all “communications data” of every German citizen, for the sake of national security. Given the most recent publication of documents about the intent of the NSA to gain complete control of the internet, Merkel must feel proud of how she is facilitating Big Uncle’s access to the privates of her children.
The justification? Was it that the tiny number of perpetrators of the Paris atrocities had escaped notice of the well-endowed security apparatus? Of course not. They were well known, at least one of them having been thrown into prison to learn more about terrorism, in this totally controlled, government training facility. Just as in the case of “9/11,” the international security agencies had all the information and all the tools they needed to prevent the few individuals from inflicting their violent outrages on society.
Merkel, being originally from communist East Germany, should know better than most that ever increasing amounts of spying by everyone on everyone only leads to the need to erect ever higher “Berlin Walls,” of every kind, around society, walls that ultimately will come tumbling down, in a jubilant celebration of freedom over government control.
The current reasoning of governments is a strange inversion of the already rather nasty utilitarian maxim “Greatest Good for the Greatest Number of People.” The new “national security” maxim seems to be “sacrifice the good of everyone in the name of controlling a few, known crazies.” In effect, it is the same as putting a nation, even our whole world under Marshall Law, simply because there are a few, easily identified, violent people in every society, always have been, apparently always will be.
Given that every “typed” and therefore digital communication is now connected to the internet, the children in Finland will soon be in the vanguard of a society that is incapable of communicating without exposing themselves at the same time to the leering eyes of Uncle Sam and Aunt Merkel. And yes, children are very susceptible to the nasty advances of adults. Already, they have fallen into the trap of passing even little love notes only through the shiny, digital voyeur mechanisms of the adult world.
I would therefore like to recommend that we all follow, as soon as possible, the patriotic example of Finland. Let us declare handwriting a threat to national security and the passing of personal, handwritten notes from one person to another an overt act of terrorism. Never mind the very personal elements of the specific form of the handwriting, the perhaps nervously formed letters, or the lovingly shaped special words. Never mind the special paper, for today’s note, or the little colored drawing on the side, mixed with handwritten lettering. All that is irrelevant: if you pass a personal note or letter to anyone or if you share such a non-digital threat to everyone, you obviously are a menace to society. Ray Bradbury’s “Fahrenheit 451” and Aldous Leonard Huxley’s “Brave New World” are no longer dystopia. They have become the utopia not only of Merkel and Uncle Sam, but even of supposedly freedom loving societies like Finland.
We should applaud all attempts to free our children from the burden of highly personal, unique, private self-expression and person to person, intimate conversations. Let’s start with burning all personal diaries, written with pen and paper, especially those with that “cute” little lock on top: a symbol of terrorist intentions.
You want to sign your name? Only a digital signature, already on file, is acceptable, unless you are a subversive.