Showing Page:
1/2
Michael Davis
Professor Metzger
English Composition II: 3300-112-050
17 September 2020
Response to Carl Sagan’s A Demon Haunted World Excerpt
(1) After reading the excerpt, I related most to Sagan’s statement 30 second sound bites
that are now down to 10 seconds or less. While this was written in the late 1990s, this carries all
the way to the modern era, with mobile applications such as TikTok, Snapchat, and Instagram. I
relate to these most recently because TikTok is a very famous and influential application that has
roughly 30 (sometimes 10) second sound bites with dancing or some other visual representing
them. It almost appears mindless when people scroll TikTok sometimes, almost as though those
same 10 second sound bites playing over and over again, almost numbing your mind. I
completely understand how he correlates this as a major contributor to the dumbing down of
America. TikTok alone is a large cultural phenomenon that has contributed to simpler, repeated
humor.
(2) The most agreeable thing I found in this excerpt was when Sagan talked about how
our understanding and questioning has decreased as a society. Sagan spoke of how no one of the
public interest can grasp issues and have lost the ability to question authority or set agendas. This
is extremely evident in the president Donald Trump was. Donald Trump is not a good politician,
but he is an exceptional marketer and businessman. So exceptional in fact that, despite his lack of
qualifications and horrible sportsmanship and lack of respect from half the country, he was able
to become President. A job in which requires much sophistication, knowledge, and ideals of
unity to do properly. Even though he was impeached twice, accused of sexual assault by many
women, going against promises he set forth, and many, many other problems, Donald Trump
maintained an incredible cult following. This showcases Sagan’s message expertly, how Trump
Supporters don’t grasp the true natures of the issues set in place and never question Trump’s
authority or agenda, but instead blindly follow him like some sort of deity. It’s incredibly
fascinating.
(3) I think what I disagree most with what Sagan discussed was about how movies and
shows like Dumb and Dumber and Beavis and Butthead respectively celebrate ignorance. I think
this is far from true. When I watch a film starring ignorant individuals such as Dumb and
Dumber, never in my mind does that encourage me to follow what they’re doing or become more
ignorant. It’s a similar argument to the discussion of violent video games encouraging violence.
While social media can directly influence people by creating trends that interact with the real
world, film doesn’t encourage this, and instead serves purely as a vessel for entertainment. In
conclusion, I have never watched Tommy Boy thinking that it’s the secret to becoming a
successful automobile parts salesman.
(4) I absolutely agree with Sagan’s statement regarding the dumbing down of America
due to influential media. If Donald Trump alone hasn’t already proved how influential the media
Showing Page:
2/2
is, I think the best example of this is something that happened more recently. A recent TikTok
trend that is genuinely concerning many secondary schools across the United States involves
children stealing items and objects found throughout school, such as desks, monitors, toilets,
even teacher’s wallets and their car doors, vandalizing and destroying these schools. This shows
how influential social media is at encouraging young minds to justify committing terrible and
wicked acts such as stealing from their school because it’s a “trend they found online.”
(5) There are a few meanings he could be referring to regarding the world’s awesome
technology in the clutches of few individuals. First, he could be referring to awesome
technologies that advance our society such as NASA (or more likely, billionaires such as Elon
Musk and Richard Branson) which spend billions creating spaceships and other galactic vessels
far beyond the realm of the average individuals understanding, and thus gives these institutions
and individuals much greater power in that field that we’ll never have. Second, he could be
referencing our world leader’s who have access to powerful nuclear weapons and bombs that can
cause destruction anywhere while simultaneously alerting to commoners in society that we’re
below these individuals who wield these powers. Finally (and most probably), he could be
talking about how due to the fact that we rely heavily on technology in our modern era from
smartphones and laptops and the like, this directly empowers the creators and leaders of these
software, such as Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Tim Cook, and their subordinates
who have the capabilities of dramatically altering the lives of hundreds of millions (even
billions) by updating or releasing new innovations in technology, which thusly (in conjunction
with the tens of billions of dollars they make selling these products), makes them incredibly
powerful individuals.
(6) I absolutely, absolutely view his message in this excerpt to serve as a prophetic telling
of our world’s decay. From his literal mention of 30-second sound bites (representative of
TikTok), to the overbearing care of superstitions such as horoscopes, to the United States as a
whole being entirely a “service and information economy.” It is absolutely incredible how much
this man understood the rapid changing of our intelligence and degradation over time, and how
much he was able to predict about what would happen in the future. The United States is slowly
but surely approaching that service and information only economy, manufacturing being left to
China and other countries that ship the product to us. The things the United States is most
famous for now regard exclusively service and information, such as Disney, Snapchat, Amazon,
Facebook, Google, and most blockbuster TV shows and movies. It is magical that one man could
foresee this impending future that is fully realized today.
I apologize if these answers are too long, Carl Sagan’s message interested me greatly and
I wanted to give good conversation to these topics.

Unformatted Attachment Preview

Michael Davis Professor Metzger English Composition II: 3300-112-050 17 September 2020 Response to Carl Sagan’s A Demon Haunted World Excerpt (1) After reading the excerpt, I related most to Sagan’s statement 30 second sound bites that are now down to 10 seconds or less. While this was written in the late 1990s, this carries all the way to the modern era, with mobile applications such as TikTok, Snapchat, and Instagram. I relate to these most recently because TikTok is a very famous and influential application that has roughly 30 (sometimes 10) second sound bites with dancing or some other visual representing them. It almost appears mindless when people scroll TikTok sometimes, almost as though those same 10 second sound bites playing over and over again, almost numbing your mind. I completely understand how he correlates this as a major contributor to the dumbing down of America. TikTok alone is a large cultural phenomenon that has contributed to simpler, repeated humor. (2) The most agreeable thing I found in this excerpt was when Sagan talked about how our understanding and questioning has decreased as a society. Sagan spoke of how no one of the public interest can grasp issues and have lost the ability to question authority or set agendas. This is extremely evident in the president Donald Trump was. Donald Trump is not a good politician, but he is an exceptional marketer and businessman. So exceptional in fact that, despite his lack of qualifications and horrible sportsmanship and lack of respect from half the country, he was able to become President. A job in which requires much sophistication, knowledge, and ideals of unity to do properly. Even though he was impeached twice, accused of sexual assault by many women, going against promises he set forth, and many, many other problems, Donald Trump maintained an incredible cult following. This showcases Sagan’s message expertly, how Trump Supporters don’t grasp the true natures of the issues set in place and never question Trump’s authority or agenda, but instead blindly follow him like some sort of deity. It’s incredibly fascinating. (3) I think what I disagree most with what Sagan discussed was about how movies and shows like Dumb and Dumber and Beavis and Butthead respectively celebrate ignorance. I think this is far from true. When I watch a film starring ignorant individuals such as Dumb and Dumber, never in my mind does that encourage me to follow what they’re doing or become more ignorant. It’s a similar argument to the discussion of violent video games encouraging violence. While social media can directly influence people by creating trends that interact with the real world, film doesn’t encourage this, and instead serves purely as a vessel for entertainment. In conclusion, I have never watched Tommy Boy thinking that it’s the secret to becoming a successful automobile parts salesman. (4) I absolutely agree with Sagan’s statement regarding the dumbing down of America due to influential media. If Donald Trump alone hasn’t already proved how influential the media is, I think the best example of this is something that happened more recently. A recent TikTok trend that is genuinely concerning many secondary schools across the United States involves children stealing items and objects found throughout school, such as desks, monitors, toilets, even teacher’s wallets and their car doors, vandalizing and destroying these schools. This shows how influential social media is at encouraging young minds to justify committing terrible and wicked acts such as stealing from their school because it’s a “trend they found online.” (5) There are a few meanings he could be referring to regarding the world’s awesome technology in the clutches of few individuals. First, he could be referring to awesome technologies that advance our society such as NASA (or more likely, billionaires such as Elon Musk and Richard Branson) which spend billions creating spaceships and other galactic vessels far beyond the realm of the average individuals understanding, and thus gives these institutions and individuals much greater power in that field that we’ll never have. Second, he could be referencing our world leader’s who have access to powerful nuclear weapons and bombs that can cause destruction anywhere while simultaneously alerting to commoners in society that we’re below these individuals who wield these powers. Finally (and most probably), he could be talking about how due to the fact that we rely heavily on technology in our modern era from smartphones and laptops and the like, this directly empowers the creators and leaders of these software, such as Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Tim Cook, and their subordinates who have the capabilities of dramatically altering the lives of hundreds of millions (even billions) by updating or releasing new innovations in technology, which thusly (in conjunction with the tens of billions of dollars they make selling these products), makes them incredibly powerful individuals. (6) I absolutely, absolutely view his message in this excerpt to serve as a prophetic telling of our world’s decay. From his literal mention of 30-second sound bites (representative of TikTok), to the overbearing care of superstitions such as horoscopes, to the United States as a whole being entirely a “service and information economy.” It is absolutely incredible how much this man understood the rapid changing of our intelligence and degradation over time, and how much he was able to predict about what would happen in the future. The United States is slowly but surely approaching that service and information only economy, manufacturing being left to China and other countries that ship the product to us. The things the United States is most famous for now regard exclusively service and information, such as Disney, Snapchat, Amazon, Facebook, Google, and most blockbuster TV shows and movies. It is magical that one man could foresee this impending future that is fully realized today. I apologize if these answers are too long, Carl Sagan’s message interested me greatly and I wanted to give good conversation to these topics. Name: Description: ...
User generated content is uploaded by users for the purposes of learning and should be used following Studypool's honor code & terms of service.
Studypool
4.7
Trustpilot
4.5
Sitejabber
4.4