Professor Leon Kass, former chairman of President Bush’s Council on Bioethics, issues a warning about the “technological mentality” that threatens to reduce all matters of morality to issues of technology and technique. Dr. Kass is a medical doctor, biologist, teacher, and philosopher. See these prophetic paragraphs:
Before the twentieth century millions of people lived in abject poverty, died in childbirth or infancy, and so forth. So I don’t want to say that modernity went wrong–that would be hypocritical. But I’m worried about where technology is taking us now. I have smart friends who argue that human nature has a kind of stabilizing good sense, and that we will recover our balance. But I’m not sure I believe that.
The question is not just biotechnology, but really the march of the wider technological mentality. Technology is more than machinery and acquired power to change the way things are. At its root, the technological disposition believes all aspects of life can be rationally mastered through technique. So now we have techniques for solving marital problems, grief, and almost everything else. And at the end of the day you’ve utterly transformed the character of human life. Eventually the things that really matter–family life, worship, self-governance, education of the next generation–become threatened.
See: ‘Live” With Leon Kass, The American Enterprise, July/August 2006.
R. Albert Mohler Jr.
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