His encyclical letter, in English called “On Care for Our Common Home” is widely reported as his statement on climate change.
But it’s about more than just hurricanes and ice floes.
One caricatured response to what Francis wrote could be: agribusiness bad, organic farms good. But before you start planting maize in your back garden, take look at what else Francis wrote.
Look, and look carefully, against this backdrop: there are about 3.5 billion Internet users, and nearly two billion smart phone users on the planet. If you count 7.3 billion people as the world’s population, consider the fact that about 6.8 billion folks have a cellular telephone account. The United Nations reports that even in the poorest countries nearly nine of ten inhabitants are, as they say, connected.
While billions are online at some level, hundreds of thousands are not. Internet users are mainly in the twenty richest nations.
The numbers of smart phone users and by implication the numbers connected to the Internet through them seem high, but recall if you will the videos of teenaged boys climbing around Nineveh texting and taking photos of storied treasures destroyed by the so-called Islamic State. Recall the omnipresence of flat black devices at work, in the mall, and at the last public meeting you attended. Recall that every tragedy, major or minor, seems to show up on Facebook or even national broadcast news thanks to smart phone video.
We all want to be connected. The use of technology is good for us because it makes our life more convenient. But too much use of technology is bad. We get influenced by technology and we should not make technology control us.