Friday, April 15, 2011

Growin’ Up Way Too Fast

    The world is quickly changing around us. I am aware of the cell phones improving and computers having the ability to do unthinkable tasks, however when do we put an age limit on when children can have access to the booming technology and just be kids before then. My younger sister is currently a 5th grader. All of her friends have cell phones and are constantly calling one another. My sister doesn't have this luxury, not because we can't afford one, but because she doesn't need one. My parents have put their foot down. We just stopped getting cable, so all we have are the "boring channels." I don't have unlimited texting, and very rarely do I spend time watching television, but I seem to be a minority.

    The internet is a crazy place. A simple leakage of one mistake could ruin someone's life and identity. Facebook is no longer needed for staying connected. Facebook has gone to the extreme and created an afternoon hobby called creeping. Yes, I am aware everyone does this, but is this ethical? Should people have access to everything about me? Should they be able to see the pictures I took with my friends over the weekend when we were just goofing around? Well, that is why Facebook has security settings. I try my best to monitor what others can see or who I choose to be friends with, and I'm pretty sure I'm successful at this, but do children really know the implications of what they are doing on the internet.

    My sister's friend (a 5th grader) just requested to be my friend on Facebook. Wasn't Facebook supposed to be an only high school and older site? Weren't there rules for a reason? Social skills are lacking. People no longer know how to communicate in person. Everything is done through e-mails or texting, but no expression is then being shown. People cannot convey their emotions. Relationships having lasted years are now being broken over a simple message. Where is the emotion? Children are getting fatter; I hate to be mean but this is the reality. Whatever happened to playing outside when returning home from school instead of playing on the internet? Whatever happened to letting one's imagination run wild, instead of cartoons making an imagination for children?

    The fact is, kids are growing up way too fast. As I prepare myself to enter the adult stages of my life, I have realized everything I miss. I miss those nights where laying in bed day dreaming was okay. I miss those nights where I wasn't required to read a certain book but got to choose my own. I miss those days when any long book was considered a chapter book. I don't even think I know how to read books without chapters any more. I miss being a kid. Within society we are encouraging kids to grow up faster. Society needs to slow this process, because these are the days that will create brilliant minds. Don't worry, children will eventually learn how to run the technology. I truly hope our world realizes this and someday I can meet all of the "kids". But for now, let kids be kids.

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