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Chess Anyone?

I am convinced if Apollo XIII happened today, there is no way those astronauts would have survived. NASA would have looked to its computers which would have concluded the situation is hopeless, so start planning the memorial ceremony. Unlike the desperate human minds at work in 1971, the human minds of 2014 would be trained only to push buttons on a computer and the machine would never think that with a little duct tape, cardboard and a hose you can construct a life-saving air filter.

Call me old-fashioned, but it seems the more technology we have, the less we do. We are raising a generation that cannot read, write or think. Want proof? Next time you see a student texting madly ask yourself if “LOL”, “BFF” or “G2G” has the emotive force of “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times,” “We hold these truths to be self-evident”, or “It was evening and morning, the first day.”

The technological fever has infected our recreation as well. My favorite games growing up were board games that required thought. These ranged from the most challenging, chess for sure, to the simpler, like a board game called Meet the Presidents where you advanced spaces if you could answer questions about the various administrations.

If I were on Apollo XIII today, I would sooner trust my life to someone who shows the ability of exercising independent thought even in his (her) recreational pursuits, rather than one whose core competency involves an imagined mass slaughter by means of pushing buttons on a video game console.

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