Envisioning the Future

thumb_XVI_CVRAs you should know by now, Julia Karr‘s been counting down the Sixteen Weeks to the release day of her debut novel XVI with a tour around the blogosphere. This week, in response to her Kirkus review which asked “How did the situation get so broken?”, Julia blogged on Janet Fox’s website about several current trends that, if left unchecked, could easily morph into the dystopian politics of XVI’s world. A sampling:

The vise-grip that media has on nearly all westernized nations. If it’s on TV or the Internet – it must be the truth. A viewer chooses their channel of choice and believes every word that comes out of the mouths of the talking heads that continue to shape the beliefs of their listeners/watchers. At some point in the future, there may not be a choice of channels, but just one news source backed by wealth, which runs the government and through them, the media. (I do worry about this!)

and

Relinquishing freedoms in the name of safety. Such as: GPS trackers planted in our babies so that if they are kidnapped we can find them. And, then not taken out because, what if, as an adult, we were lost or kidnapped? Sounds like a good idea, right?

It’s hard to read this and NOT think about the recent Wikileaks concerns, with various governments trying to shut down the free flow of information. I also regularly read the blog Free-Range Kids, that hopes to impart a little more common sense to today’s parents, who always seem ready to believe the worst possible scenario, rather than letting their kids live their lives like we did.

Is it so hard to jump from pre-schools refusing to hire male teachers or news outlets warning us that child pornographers “could” use the new video camera Barbies to find victims to an assumptive future where girls are chipped and tattooed “for their own safety”? I think not.

I’d like to keep any possible dystopian future in great novels like XVI, and not in my reality. How about you? And if you haven’t already, go read Julia’s whole guest blog and enter for a chance to win XVI!

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