Our guest blogger, Matt, makes another appearance.
So Heather and I were in Costco the other day. We love Costco. Costco provides a good, real-world example of orders of magnitude. You go there with a list, and the number of items that you leave with can often be expressed as follows (where X= the number of items on your list):
We got this Blu-ray DVD thing for Christmas (from Costco), but we have no actual Blu-ray discs, which seems a shame. So while in Costco recently, we happened upon the cheap Blu-ray discs and acquired two. Neither was on the list. The first was Men in Black, the original. You have to love a movie in which Tommy Lee Jones interrogates a pug. The second was Gattaca. If you have not seen it, you must. Ethan Hawke, Uma Thurman and Jude Law are in it. It is set in a future when embryos are created in labs, screened for their genetic makeup and then implanted based on the parents’ wishes. Choose an athlete, artist, whatever you wish. Designer babies, with all possible genetic advantages. Babies that are not so designed are shunned and have no possibility of success. I remember Gene Siskel’s review of it. He said that the future it portrayed was not only plausible, but likely.
Being a genetically designed being is good. Car seats are hard to install, you have to move them from car to car, you end up with 410 of them in your house even though you repeatedly tell your wife to get them out of the living room, etc. But LATCH (Lines Attached To Car Hooks for those not familiar with the term) is a standard thing in vehicles, and now there will be more of them because of the CARS program that just ended with all of those piece of whatever vehicles that got turned in without LATCH. So to solve the problems inherent with car seats, all children should be genetically engineered to have LATCH connectors integrated into their skeletal systems. Instead of affixing a car seat to the car, you simply snap in the kid. It’s not just evolutionary, it’s revolutionary!
For rear facing kids, the connectors would be in the feet, with a tether strap protruding from the cranium. Those connectors would fall out, kind of like baby teeth, when the child reached two years of age and thirty pounds (longer for children of really anal parents; consult your genetic counselor). At the same time, connectors would erupt from each child’s pelvis, and the child could be turned around. The tether strap would also fall out, like an umbilical cord, and the skull would magnetize. Magnets in the head rest of the car would keep each child’s head immobilized. This would also help in avoiding the child looking around or not sitting up properly. It is also useful with hats on windy days. The pelvis connectors could either be engineered to fall out at 12 years of age or retained for carrying around keys (particularly useful for janitors) later in life.
I know what you’re thinking. This is clearly a brilliant idea, conceived by a true visionary, but how much would it cost? Surprisingly little. With government funding from the stimulus plan, I estimate that the technology could be in place in as little as 10 years at a total cost of less than 41000 dollars. You have fewer items in your cart when you leave Costco. Think about it. Isn’t the future of America and the safety of our children worth the investment?