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Wired for a reason

Dear Editor:

I feel compelled to answer Mr. Mulberry’s letter of April 15, where he writes about how iPods and other digital devices are destroying the education and socialization of our children. While his letter is well written and makes some good points, I just don’t think he gets it.

First, he claims that children don’t really need cell phones. “Who do they need to keep in touch with?” he asks. Gee, I don’t know. Maybe their parents? And if you are a parent, you can easily lock out a child’s phone so they can only call you.



Sites like Facebook are a great way for kids to be creative and get a message out to the world, although I will admit some kids go a little overboard in doing this, and even with the First Amendment maybe more restrictions need to be placed on these social sites.

Mr. Mulberry complains of kids using texting language on tests. While I would leave this up to the teacher, these are the kids who started Microsoft, Google, Apple and Yahoo. As long as they understand each other, and my Apple stock keeps going up, I don’t care how they communicate.




He complains about kids not reading books anymore, yet most of my friends, including myself, now download books off the Net into our computers, Kindles and iPods. And if Steve Jobs has his way, Mr. Mulberry will be reading the paper on an iPad in the bathroom.

Furthermore, while I’m old enough to be his grandfather, I just got my first iPod a month ago and I couldn’t be more delighted. It has my music in there for sure, but I can also listen to the radio, look at my photos, take and playback videos, use it as an alarm clock, calendar, it has a pedometer in it, games, and it even has a voice recorder in it for lectures, meetings and whatnot. Not only that I was able to download all my contacts into it.

Without the skills to use these digital devices many kids will be left out in the cold when they go job hunting, and I know more than one person who was handed a new Blackberry when they showed up for work.

Now, I will give Mr. Mulberry this: I see a lot of people, both young and old, walking around and riding the lifts with what looks like earbuds growing out of their heads. While this is definitely not conducive to socializing, it’s definitely a safety hazard. While I enjoy my iPod, I definitely don’t want to miss that “LOOK OUT!” which might be coming my way.

Great letter, Mr. Mulberry, but there is another side.

Sheldon Fingerman

Aspen


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