Step away from technology

Spinnaker

It’s amazing how technology is able to take over our lives in so many ways, making us a socially inept society dependent on constant entertainment.

The use of technology has been taken to the extreme as we rely on it throughout the entire week. Just the other day, I went to look for a birthday present at the mall and noticed at least six people with headphones in their ears. The weird thing is they weren’t shopping alone.

I understand wanting to tune out someone – I wouldn’t mind putting my roommate on mute at times – but listening to music while walking with a friend is absurd.

Whatever happened to a good old-fashioned conversation between two people?

We have transformed into a society that has our cell phones glued to our hands, not to our ears. Webarely use our phones to make calls anymore. Instead, we use them to surf the Internet, download music and of course, there is the infamous texting.

We text until our fingers are blue, instead of just calling the person and getting what we need in a matter of minutes.

According to Students Against Destructive Decisions, 50 percent of teens admit to text messaging while driving. This is an alarming statistic that now rivals drinking and driving in terms of danger and prevalence.

Then there’s what takes place at home. Instead of turning to our family, friends and the great outdoors, we just watch TV, surf the Internet, and play video games. A majority of youth between the ages of 8 and 18 play close to 13 hours of video games a week, according to a survey by Harris Interactive.

We can’t learn or grow as people if we are just sitting back and watching the work being done for us.

And it’s not good enough just to have technology anymore. Nowadays, everyone has to have the most updated and advanced form of a product. Phones, cars, laptops and TV sets have to be bigger and better today than they were yesterday.

I am not saying we should all turn into Fred Flintstone and live in the stone age, but we need to be grateful for what we have available to us and enjoy a conversation between our friends.

Take out the earphones, put down the phones, close and walk away from the laptop, and become consumed in the world around you, not the technology.

If we don’t, we might in turn become a population similar to those in the film “WALL-E,” sitting in hover-crafts and staring at a digital screen all day. The people in the movie even talk through a screen when they are sitting right next to each other. They have no desire to exercise or enjoy the outdoors.

So, UNF, I challenge you to go one day without your favorite electronic device. You might feel like you’re naked or missing a vital organ, but you also might find that you really don’t need it after all.

E-mail Heather Furey at [email protected]