As a species, while we have moments of genius, we’re fundamentally a stupid bunch, and I feel that’s what our legacy should be.
Humans fascinate me. Mostly, because we’re a lot dumber than we look. Yes, our species has been capable of some remarkable achievements over the millennia. From the upright apes who made fire by banging rocks together, to the physicists who unleashed nuclear power by splitting the atom, our kind has been responsible for some pretty clever things.
But therein lies the problem.
We’re capable of some epic stupidity too – often involving those very same innovations.
Cave people were making fire around 400,000 years ago, but today many of their descendants struggle to understand that hot coffee is, in fact, hot – and need a warning label on their Starbucks cup.
Scientists figured out how to release the unimaginable power trapped in the nucleus of the Uranium atom. Politicians promptly used it to destroy two major cities – leaving the rest of them in perpetual fear of annihilation.
It seems that for every brilliant discovery, invention or innovation, there’s an equally stupid use for it.
We invented the world’s greatest high-speed data network, one that can collect, store and disseminate the sum of all human knowledge. And we use it for porn, bullying and sharing cat videos.
Plastic was supposed to be the material of a thousand uses. What do we use it for? Polluting the ocean.
We invented the aerosol and used it to make a hole in the ozone layer.
We invented electricity and used it as a novel way to execute prisoners.
Jet engines? They became a faster way to bomb foreigners.
The smartphone? More porn. And selfies. And selfie porn.
3D printing? Homemade guns.
Lasers? Blinding commercial pilots.
Silicone? Fake boobs.
There’s nothing we can create, invent or discover that cannot be turned into something stupid, dangerous or possibly apocalyptic.
And if you don’t believe me, think about the world’s most powerful social media communication network (which, incidentally, was invented by college nerds to perv on girls). It has recently been used to successfully undermine the world’s biggest democracy. Possibly, democracy itself.
I reckon if the world comes to an end anytime soon, it will probably be the result of a brilliant idea, used stupidly.