ELECTRICITY AND MODERN LIFE
Ours is an age of electricity which is replacing other sources of energy like water, oil and coal, because it is comparably cheap, efficient and useful. Electricity supplies every kind of energy to man to improve his scientific inventions and increase his social amenities. From house-lighting to the running of giant factories, it is the invisible current that flows through the thin copper wire of insignificant dimension. Just switching on of button releases power and man has not failed to avail himself of both the constructive and destructive potentialities of electrical energy.
Consider the constructive side of electricity. It is a source of light, heat and other comforts. House, streets, parks, pleasure houses and places are lighted with electricity. Heating and cooling processes are also carried on by it. Air-conditioning is a feat of modern electrical engineering. Refrigerators not only condition the temperature but also preserve and facilitate man’s food supply. Transport of perishable foods, drugs and drinks, in good condition, from one corner of the globe to another, is made possible by this device. Again, labour in every form in house, in office, and in factories is simplified by the introduction of electrical devices.
Among domestic services, machinery of every type is worked more cheaply and efficiently by electricity. And many a labour saving and time saving devices using electrical energy have been introduced to minimize drudgery at home and at office. Modern communications and transport are rendered safer, speedier and more comfortable by the introduction of wireless, telephone and telegraph, the electric train, tram and motor. Recent inventions like the gramophone, the talkie, radio and television are some of the other triumphs that man has achieved by its application. Electricity has also come to play an important part in the treatment of diseases by electrotherapy.
The destructive side: High voltage electricity kills life like the elements, say water or fire, in their ferocity. Death is swift and painless. So in America, criminals sentenced to death, are electrocuted. Mad dogs are also disposed of in the same way, but man abuses this useful source of energy against his own fellow men in war.
The atom bomb, the hydrogen bomb and a thousand other minor devices have been perfected. They can work havoc wiping out cities and bringing ruin to every kind of life over a wide area. The stage has come when men have started fearing the dire consequences which will follow by the use of such terrible weapons of war.