By Brindha Srinivas
It was on the 23rd of March 2016, the day after the Brussel bombings, when I got on my normal 8:02 train and headed to sit with my friends. The previous evening, I couldn’t stop thinking about the attacks which had happened and the photos which were spread everywhere. Apart from the pure horror of things the question of “Why” kept circulating around my head. Hoping to find some solace within my friends, I decided to ask them about it.
“Hey guys, did you hear about what happened yesterday?” I had asked looking amongst the six girls. I was met with complete blank faces.
“The Brussels bombings” I clarified with hesitance laced in my voice. Again they seemed not to know, and shrugged their shoulders.
Taken a back, I then went into detail about what had happened. After explaining everything, they seemed somewhat unfazed and unaffected by all that I had said. It was all over the news, how could they have not seen in it?
It was then I realised that as soon as I had finished saying everything, they all went back into their worlds. Their worlds of screens, and very little face to face interactions. It seemed to my friends, and most teenagers that everything they needed to know all happened in a small little screen littered with pixels and everything occurred at the touch of a button and a swipe of a finger.
In a world where the amount of likes, comments and shares dictate a person’s validity, it is no surprise to me to see the disconnection between young people and the world. Celebrities who seem to not have a positive contribution to society, but to fashion outweigh influential leaders in today’s society. It has come to the point where all teenagers care about the “high end” life of being a celebrity, who in actual fact only get paid to look pretty. They are forgetting all that is important in today’s day and age, and what is real and affecting people, whether that be natural disasters or innocent killings.
Young people need to wake up and step outside the bubble which they live on online and see the world for its sufferings and strengths. The world has so much more to offer than Kim Kardashians bottom #breakingtheinternet. Insignificant things such as “Which celebrity lost ten kilograms”, or “This celebrity cheated on that celebrity”. Do these “astounding” and “life changing” facts ever help anyone achieve greater things in life? Do these sources, have any use what so ever to provide an individual to be better functioning members of society?
As much as technology allows individuals to be technologically aware, it is just not enough. Rather then knowing what is going on in the world because it “pops up on your Facebook feed” Their lives are being played out in a digital and cyber space, far away from any human interaction possible. Being a person in the real world is one thing, but being someone online is a completely different thing.
When being online and such it is easy to get distracted and involved within that realm of cyber, but it is important to also be socially aware of the real world around us and understand that not everything revolves around technology and social media. Technology and social media, are tools used to help individuals express themselves not trap them. They are a window to get to the outer and greater world, but maintaining social awareness, is what ultimately lets our souls be encompassed by the window which is technology.