Worst Inventions in History Whose Absence Would Make the Present Better – Part 1

The irony of today is that people who initially set out to change the world for the better ended up causing it a lot of harm. Had they known at the time, they probably wouldn’t have walked out the door.

“Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds,” is what Oppenheimer, an avid lover of philosophy and literature, thought to himself as he witnessed his atomic bomb cause unprecedented destruction over the Trinity test site in New Mexico.

There are several other similar inventions in history that the world would have been better off without. Not all are as destructive as the atomic bomb but detrimental to the world, nonetheless.

We have picked out some of these inventions below.

Leaded Petrol

Thomas Midgley Jr. wasn’t a man of terrible intentions. He was an industrialist like any other, yet two of his inventions proved to be utterly harmful. The reason gas stations today advertise unleaded gasoline is because leaded gasoline is mortally dangerous, and this man was responsible for putting it there.

leaded petrol

It was in the early 1920s that Midgley discovered the beneficial effects of lead in gasoline. It was a relatively cheap substance that enhanced the engine’s performance.

However, it wasn’t too long after that factory workers in the production facility started getting lead poisoning. Even Midgley himself was affected by it, so he took a long vacation to clear his lungs, but those less fortunate died.

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Freon

You probably won’t know what Freon is, but the man who created leaded gasoline created this too, so we thought it was worth a mention.

Freon was one of the first CFCs to be invented, the primary component in commercial freezers and aerosol cans. Although Freon is no longer used as a CFC, this switch is considerably recent and many devices that use Freon still exist.

freon

So, what does Freon do apart from freezing things up?

It eats away the ozone layer, earth’s protection against harmful UV from the sun. Considerable damage has already been done to the ozone by Freon emissions, resulting in millions of casualties.

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Cigarettes

There aren’t many consumer products that can brag about killing off approximately half of its users, but cigarettes can. The original cigarette finds its origins in the 9th century where it was used in religious rituals. It developed and evolved over time until it found itself being used for medicinal purposes during the 1700s.

cigarette

Cigarettes are a highly addictive substance thanks to the nicotine they come packed with, which is also highly destructive. They come chock-full of harmful chemicals that pose tremendous risk to smokers and everyone around them. This is really one of the top worst inventions.

Dynamite

Dynamite was invented by the notable industrialist and inventor, Alfred Nobel, of which the Nobel Peace Prize is a namesake.

He spent a better part of 20 years trying to stabilize nitroglycerine and make it safe for transport, leading to the invention of dynamite. He is also credited for inventing the cap and detonator so that it could be detonated from a distance.

dynamite

In his defense, he only meant for it to be used for mining purposes. However, things seldom work out the way we want them to, and a weapon such as this was bound to find its way into the hands of those who would use it as one.

Conclusion

History is littered with several such inventions and we have barely even scratched the surface with these four. Corn syrup, gun powder, Styrofoam – you name it! The world has suffered much at the hands of often innocent inventors who couldn’t have dreamed how detrimental their inventions would prove to be.

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