Brains Gone Rotten

Written By: Chaya  Konikov

Melted brains and lifeless eyes, a common side effect to what my mom calls vegetating. Sitting in front of any screen, big or small, for endless hours at a time is the definition of vegetating. And eventually after sitting and vegetating for so long you become a vegetable with a mushy brain and dead fish eyes, like the kids these days who are so dependent on media that they have achieved the unachievable. They have become vegetable children.

I have a question for you, which will inevitably result in your smartphone coming out of your pocket. How many hours a day do you think a child spends using some sort of electronic device? Don’t worry I’ll wait for you to type it into Google, I wouldn’t want you hurting your brain. According to a new study from the Kaiser Family Foundation children ages eight through eighteen spend more than seven hours a day using the media. Chances are if your child is awake they are probably online.

Dr. Michael Rich is spot on with his assessment on what technology means to kids. Technology to kids is like the air they breathe, the water they drink and the food they eat. The need to be constantly entertained by media is an endless battle between parents and their kids. Children often complain of boredom when they are refused access to their media devices, even though there are countless other things that can be fun and exciting to do. Why would they want to play basketball outside with family and friends when you can play it on your wii? How absurd to even suggest interacting with other human beings in the big, scary, spooky outdoorsy world where you may get a sniff of the fresh air that might kill you because of the new exposure to it.

According to fourteen year old Francisco Sepulveda, a day without technology is a boring one. From early in the morning to late at night technology is a must. Oh my G-d, no technology, phone, laptop or TV? What am I going to do for the few hours that I have out of school? Oh I don’t know maybe you should pick up a book once in a while and rest your eyes from the screens that constantly surround you.

Not too long ago I went on a family road trip, but a plug in road trip would better describe the experience. During the entire three day course of the trip I spoke to my older brother once, and it was to tell him to lower his music. I asked my younger brother if he wanted to play spit, but he didn’t know how to. But he assured me that he could play another kind of card game online. I mean I thought I was a media junkie but he doesn’t even know how to play the most basics of games.

Google is an amazing search engine but it has led us to a bad place, ultimate dependency. Now thanks to this online search engine we no longer have to go searching in books or libraries for information. It’s all right in front of us at the click of a button. This is fine if you are doing a research paper and need information fast but it’s used for other things that you otherwise would have to use your brain for. How many times have you typed the word “why” into Google and whole long lists of ridiculous questions come up. Why was I born, why is the sky blue, why was flappy bird deleted… the list goes on. Not every question you have should be typed into Google.

This technology trend had to start somewhere, and for most it was as simple as being born into it. See it’s not entirely the children’s fault; the blame also falls on the parents of those children. Your child wouldn’t be on his Smartphone all day if he didn’t have one to begin with. And my little brother wouldn’t be so obsessed with watching Scooby doo if we didn’t put it on for him every time we wanted him to be quiet. My two year old little cousin already knows how to work her mothers’ iphone and it’s no surprise that her ten year old brother has his own ipad. Children these days are born into what they think is a normal way to live, but if their parents would take off the blindfold from their kids eyes it will show them a whole new world, one where you don’t only have to depend on technology. Instead the blindfold is just getting tighter and tighter leaving no room for anything but technology.

The child has finally torn his eyes away from the screen and looked at his reflection in the mirror. He was a potato. The blind fold had fallen off and he saw what he was doing to himself. Turning to the screen he found the power button and the screen went blank. In the reflection of the black screen he was a boy again with light in his eyes and a functioning brain. So turn off your screen and look up from your phone or you will never know the things that you miss.