by Kirby Federocko ('21): Executive Editor, Brightonian Media
Scientists believe that the first person that will be able to live to the age of 1000 is alive today, which goes to show the extent at w
hich technology has progressed.
As our understanding of technology increases, its applications become seemingly limitless. Electric cars, Nuclear weapons
, tens of thousands of satellites circling the globe, and yet the average person only lives to the age of 72.6 years old. Mostly, this is due to the increases and revelations of modern medicine. However, scientists have started to research the capabilities of immortality, either digitally by transferring one's consciousness to a computer, or physically, by using medicine to keep the body active, healthy, and capable of maintaining itself.
The only question that remains is this: is it ethical of humanity to maintain an extended lifespan, or even immortality?
The earth is already overpopulated and dying because of humans. The introduction of modern medicine in the last century has led to a dramatic increase in the population of the earth. The average person needs to eat about 4 pounds of food per day to survive, about 1,461 pounds per year. The average American eats approximately 2,000 pounds of food per year. This means that the average American is consuming about 40% more food than necessary, essentially starving the planet. If, medically speaking, one was able to attain physical mortality, then the rate at which the planet would die would increase to an exponential amount, reducing our time from centuries to decades to years. The ethicality of these actions are right up there with poaching and starving populations, and everyone sees these actions as wrong already. Why doesn’t anyone see the difference between overconsumption and immortality, as it ends in the same instance.
The act of immortality is selfish and greedy, as are most acts of human nature. The constant need for validation through materialistic goods is what most people feel the need to do. If humans continue to consume at the rate that they do, and then more due to immortality or extended life spans, we would be ruining and scourging the earth ten-fold. It would be inhumane and unethical to continue down this path, and absolutely nothing good can come out of it.