Remember the quote from Jerry Rubin, the American social activist during 1960s and 70s – “Never trust anyone over 30”? That was a very different time back then; and my research shows although he didn’t coin the phrase, he certainly made plenty use of it during the infamous 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago (he was arrested and was part of the notorious Chicago Eight)
It’s 2011 and it’s now time for a new phrase – “Don’t trust anyone under 30!” Have you ever tried to have a conversation with a young person; say someone under 30? It’s very difficult, isn’t it? This generation doesn’t seem to be totally there – not present; his or her mind is somewhere else.
They don’t read anymore either. They’re too busy texting their friends and butchering the English language with inane acronyms like – “btw dude, I am BTD, LOL”; or worse yet, he or she is talking too loudly on his cell about nothing to some other clueless under 30 individual. I must admit however, the rudely talking too loudly on the cell phone in public places is not a new phenomenon. This has been going on and has been a problem ever since the inception of the cell phone; however the cell phone today has more features to annoy you – the phone talks to you, takes pictures and other disruptive things.
I Live on Long Island and I used to use public transportation (Long Island Rail Road) to get to work in the morning; the commute to New York City was an hour and a half each way. The commute for me was the best part of work because I could read – I read the New York Times in the morning and before cell phones came along it was so quiet you could hear a pin drop. People were either reading like me or sleeping and perhaps maybe there would be a couple of people quietly talking in a non-disruptive way (if they chattered too loudly they would be politely shushed.)
The commute home was a little more boisterous inasmuch as people were getting out of work and going home – everyone was in a better mood; but still certainly one was able to read. Usually for the commute home, I would read the ‘New Yorker’, a novel and perhaps some non-fiction. I can honestly say that I learned more than I ever would have dreamt and perhaps got a better education on the train than all the years I spent in college.
Now doesn’t the aforementioned sound great? Isn’t reading more relaxing than texting or talking on the cell phone? Does a person have to be connected to another person who is not present? Don’t they need some downtime from interacting with other people? And if you want to talk to someone, why not have a conversation with the person sitting next to you. It’s as if they have to continually be somewhere else – anywhere but right here.
Then when the under 30 folks are home what do they do? They go on the internet and go right to Facebook and the other stupid social Networks. The younger generation has to be continuously connected; whether it’s the cell, text gossiping or sending pictures of each other back and forth on Facebook.
Now It’s your turn. WHADAWETHINK? Is technology making us dumber? Why do we have to communicate with somebody who is elsewhere? Is the internet shortening our attention spans? Are we too connected?
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