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Sierra Edwards, Assistant Op Ed Editor

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     We are obsessed with social media and letting the people we love, and even hate, know what we’re doing and how great we’re doing in life. We cannot walk around without looking down at our phones. We’re out at dinner and we look at our phones instead of the people we are with.
I will admit to doing all of these things before and I have been trying to alter that. But one of the things I’m most disappointed in since technology has taken over is that we have forgotten about books.

     As an English major, I read a lot to begin with. Granted, it is mandatory reading, but there are still many books involved in my classes. But outside of that, I don’t get to read anymore.

     Personally, it is because I’ve become so busy and I already have readings for classes to do. I can’t make time to read for fun. But I hardly ever hear of people reading for fun anymore.

     We have Netflix, we have Hulu, On Demand and everything else in between. We have movies that are based off of books, even television series. Yet no one wants to read the actual book that the shows are based off of.

     Or people don’t even know anymore that most movies made are based off of books, which is disheartening to me. I’ve had conversations with people that involved me talking about a book, and that person never hearing about it or they just don’t read.

     What has happened to the world? We used to be forced to read in grade school. And once we were in high school, there was a good number of people who carried books around to class to read after they were done with their work; I was one of them. Now, if I walk in to a Barnes and Noble, it’s rare to see more than ten people in that store.

     Everyone is so involved in trying to binge the newest Netflix show that they forget about everything else around them. Books have their own world. You can have an image throughout reading the entire book and it’s like having a movie playing in your head.

     No one talks about books or what author is releasing a new book. I have one or two close friends who are still into books and wanting to buy them and dive into them.

     It’s upsetting to know that people just really don’t care about books and what they have to offer anymore. Our generation would rather stay in and watch Netflix for hours on end than go outside on a nice day and read a book.

     Of course I have decided at times to stay in and do that, I’m guilty of being someone like that, but I have recently made time for my books. I’ve been building a library. I have an appreciation for holding a book in my hand and feeling the pages turn in between my fingers. It’s a greater feeling than completing a series on Netflix.

     I want people to challenge themselves and read a book, cover to cover, at least five times a year. It could even be on an e-reader, since technology has also given us that. Take a break from your TV, laptop, phone, tablet, whatever it is. Go outside if it’s nice out, bring a book to the beach, go to your favorite spot in your house and just read.

     Read for yourself, not something you are forced to read as an assignment. Reading is still so important, even as you get older. It can broaden your vocabulary, it can expand your imagination, it can even offer you a safe space to escape to from the world.
You could start by reading a book based on your favorite show or movie and realize how different they are. Books often include more details. It’s an experience that we shouldn’t let die.

     Technology is forever going to adapt and change and we’re going to have new things to try out. And at one point, you’re going to need to replace all of those. You don’t have to replace a book. You can keep it forever on your shelves and come back to it and relive memories of when you first read it.
Even if you read at least one book, it’s a break from our technological world. I don’t want more and more people to constantly say they don’t read. There truly isn’t an excuse for it anymore. There’s a book on everything, just like there’s an app for everything. Go look for it and remember to not judge a book by its cover.

Sierra Edwards is a senior English major. She is the assistant op/ed editor for The Voice.

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