Who are today’s young adults? Are they a group of yuppie wannabes planning out every waking hour of their day or are we a bunch of know-nothings with nothing better to do than text and Facebook all day? More than ever, as I edit my book, I want to have an accurate representation of what today’s teens and twenty-somethings are really like. But we’re at a crossroads and I really think it comes down to sub-culture. I’m reading a book for my communications class called Taking Sides: Clashing Views in Mass Media and Society, written by Alison Alexander and Jarice Hanson. I’m specifically reading a section about whether young adults use this time of technology to their advantage of not, academically at least.
Reading Mark Bauerliein’s piece which calls my generation “The Dumbest Generation” and “How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future” was disheartening to say the least. He tricked me at first by offering the anecdotes of the AP taking, college craving kids in suburban America, but then he bursts the bubble. Apparently, this is the exception, not the rule. Bauerliein’s rule is that most young adults hardly ever read, rarely study, and know little about current or historical events. Before I continue I must ask…
WHAT DO YOU THINK?
Because honestly, I think this is a tremendous problem. I’d venture to say one of the biggest problems we’ve ever faced as a nation. I don’t know what’s worse, that older generations have little if any faith in us or that perhaps it’s true, that we’re not as smart as our parents are or that we don’t use our time wisely.
Perhaps I’m in denial but really, I have tremendous faith in my generation. Sure, maybe we could step up our game a little bit, a little less Facebook here and much more reading there, but if there’s anything that we have in our favor, it’s that we have a genuine love for people. Why do you think we’re using technology to increase this communication even more so? Let’s take this love for humanity and take it beyond the text. Let’s start loving the people of this world who need us more than ever. Our government is crying out for our compassion and determination—we have a hope that holds out that older generations have let expire. People in faraway nations are calling out for food, for water, for shelter. Let’s take our hands away from the phones and put them on the pavement to build homes from nothing. It’s never too late and it’s never too early to start.
Let’s prove them wrong. Let’s get it right this time. To read the full article from Bauerlein, you can go here: http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/la-et-book5-2008jul05,0,6248930.story
The Sunny Girl, Lauren Cook
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