Thursday, September 13, 2007

Implanted Microchips Aren't Science Fiction

This is the first of the excerpts from my background information pages about Stewards of the Flame. I won't necessarily take them in the order they're listed on the menu at its website -- this one happens to be in the current news. Only three days ago there was a long AP article, appearing in many newspapers, saying that the implantation of microchips in humans is now suspected of being a potential risk for cancer. This article says, "A series of veterinary and toxicology studies, dating to the mid-1990s, stated that chip implants had 'induced' malignant tumors in some lab mice and rats.... After reviewing the research, specialists at some pre-eminent cancer institutions said the findings raised red flags."

In Stewards of the Flame implanted microchips are important to the plot. When I wrote it, I made up the whole idea -- it seemed to me a likely distant-future development, considering that we now microchip cats and dogs. I wasn't aware that passive chips are already being implanted in humans, and that tracking-enabled active ones are not far off. I certainly didn't know that there are many blogs and Web pages devoted to opposing this invasion of privacy, which I have discovered only recently.

Of course, the possibility that they might cause cancer is not the only, or original, objection to them. Christian fundamentalists (though not the majority of Christians) have been saying that such chips are the "Mark of the Beast" referred to in the Bible. One doesn't have to believe this to consider the widespread implantation of such chips a bad idea. And the scary thing is not so much the possibility that someday an arbitrarily-imposed law might require it, but that the public may very well come to favor such a law for health-care reasons.

Friends, we need to wake up! Implanted microchips aren't science fiction. They were approved by the FDA in 2004 and hundreds of hospitals are now using them. Once people get used to the idea that they're a good way to ensure the availability of medical information, will they not be less adverse to the thought of the government using them for whatever purposes it finds convenient? It seems that my longtime conviction that medical "benefits" are a foot in the door for tyranny is not far off base.

For many more links to articles about this issue, plus a couple of videos, visit and click through to the main page and then "Background Information" near the bottom of it.

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