A Crutch or a Helping Hand?
A large part of growing up in the 21st century is that technology started having major developments as we grew. For example, most of us began to get phones throughout middle school, whether it was in 6th grade or 8th. When talking about technology the question that is always brought up is whether it is more of a blessing or a curse. When students were given the question to only choose one, they chose blessing. The reason for this is of all the advancements that come along with it, being able to talk to people from all around the world or someone down the block. Students also expressed how they were able to be inspired by things people do, whether that be discovering a new artist or learning about the newest robotic technology.
But, with great triumph comes a great demise. Technology is an amazing tool in so many ways, though it does have many major flaws. One of those flaws is cyberbullying. cyberbullying is no longer a new thing. There are now enough students who have seen it or have been affected by it. cyberbullying alone has caused a rise in mental health issues amongst teens, such as depression and anxiety, as well as self-image problems. Is it right though for us to say that technology is the one the blame? Antonio Migliaccio, a junior at Farmingdale High School, best put it as “We cannot blame technology for the faults of people.” Which is true. Technology didn’t just magically create bullying; it was always there. Bullying just found a new shape.
Another problem that arises with technology is the lack of social skills that come with it. For example, many people are more comfortable talking with someone over the phone than face to face. When people text it is a completely different function than talking. You can take more time to think what you want to say to someone. You also could easily offend someone while texting because you can’t hear the person’s tone. Why does this matter? This causes some teens, not all but a decent amount, to not be able to hold a conversation for that long because they can’t think of ways to respond on the fly.
Even though technology does cause more people to have a lack of social skills, it can’t be completely blamed for it. Wendoly Barahona, a junior at Farmingdale High School, sums it up: “People could just be antisocial. There were antisocial people in the 1800s too and they had no phones.” Technology has even made people even more social. in some ways. As stated earlier, we can talk to people from around the world. This causes some who are afraid of face-to-face conversations to have a social life. It could also be said that it is easier to find friends online because you can find more people with common interests, making the friendship strong and more likely to last longer.
Our generation has grown up with technology. This is a fact. It has become a crutch that some people lean on to survive. For some, if they don’t have this crutch, they will fall flat on their face. Or is technology the bright hand that has pulled us out of the darkness and into a new dawn?
What is technology to you?