Palm scanners at odds with the Bible?

Some devout Christians are challenging technology as being the work of the devil.

I read a story over the weekend which reported on an interesting objection to the use of technology in school cafeterias. According to the report, which comes from kplctv.com, parents of students attending Moss Bluff Elementary School in Lake Charles, La., are up in arms over the proposed use of a palm vein scanner to check kids through the cafeteria line.

Principal Charles Calderera says the use of the scanner, which reads the veins in a person’s hand to identify them, is becoming necessary as the school district grows. He told KPLC News that the technology would make the foodservice program more efficient and less prone to errors. He added that the school’s foodservice director, Patricia Hoseman advocated its use after parents began complaining that they were being charged for meals even though their children weren’t going through the serving line.

But, according to KPLC, some parents are opposed to the plan—on religious grounds. Principal Calderera noted that parents were told in a letter that they have the right not to allow their children to be scanned. The KPLC article quoted only one parent, who said she not only would block her child from such technology, she would transfer him or her to another school.

I must confess that, after reading several blogs on this topic and perusing several Biblical references, I’m at a loss as to how palm scanning, or any other type of biometric identification, has anything to do with the devil, which is what these conscientious objectors are complaining about. I have read several references to “the mark of the beast,” apparently referring to a passage in Revelation in which the predicted “second beast” causes all people to have a mark placed on their hands. Are these people suggesting that the “beast” placed the veins in our hand that the scanner reads? (For the record, I also find it interesting that they are using the Internet to make their message go viral.)

Whenever something is written as cryptically as the Bible is, people will find a way to read into it whatever they want. No amount of debate is going to change their minds. For all I know, they may be right. But if their goal is to keep this type of technology out of schools, the workplace and other aspects of our lives, they might want to consider joining forces with those people who believe this is a conspiracy from a government hell-bent on controlling our lives. At least they’d have strength in numbers.

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