generation M: stop being lazy b4 its 2 l8!
I don’t correspond with teenagers as much as most of you would like to think, and I am on MySpace about as often as I frequent Puerto Rican chatrooms, but in the limited correspondence I have had with people under 20 years old I have noticed a disturbing trend: Nobody writes anything out anymore. Those of you who troll the internet looking for underage tang may not find this to be a surprise, but I am rather concerned. Apparently the age of IM, Texts and MySpace messages has made for a new generation of extremely poor writers.
Is this how they are teaching it in the schools now? Gone are the days of diagramming sentences and extensive drilling on the proper use of “lay” and “lie” and in are the appropriate times to abbreviate the word “to?” Yes, kids, that is how it’s spelled. Also, not sure if you knew this, but the word “people” actually has six letters, and “your” has four. Are grammar classes now teaching that it is perfectly acceptable to replace a number for a letter as long as the sound the same? Some day, historians will look back and say “Sometime around the beginning of the 21st century, the great American empire began to crumble. This is evident as their writing became extremely lazy and unsophisticated, and rules began to be compromised in favor or convenience and speed.” Blame George Bush all you want, I blame the fucking kids.
Did everyone born after 1987 also forget that you are supposed to capitalize words at the beginning of sentences? Same thing with apostrophes. Do you just figure this minor little dot isn’t important as long as someone gets the general idea? I mean, I guess you might remember when writing a term paper, but habits form fast, and the more you use this careless grammar the more likely you are going to be to fail miserably on that lovely “analytical writing” section they have added to the SAT. Fuck that up, and your 4.3 GPA and 18 student activities are pretty much worthless.
Many may make the argument that this type of writing is only used for casual communication, and that when it comes to professionalism, generation “M” is perfectly capable of spelling words out. But this argument is full of holes. As we all know the more you do something, the more habitual it becomes, and it would only be a matter of time before we are reading sales presentations that begin “In order 4 ppl 2 be more xposed 2 ur product, u must 1st consider the gr8 # of consumers in ur area.” Yeah, real professional. See, because little abbreviations soon start to slip into “semi-formal” emails and letters, and then into legal briefs, and next thing you know into Newspaper headlines. And in a generation or two our written communication will not even resemble what we use today.
So generation M, I know you are all obese, internet addicted, emo-listening freaks who comprehend neither delayed communication nor proper grammar, but do try and follow the laws our forefathers laid out when they wrote the constitution and did not begin it with “We the ppl, in order 2 4m a more prfct union.” It’s not that hard, kids. We are becoming a nation who writes like we are trying to fit our words on the back of a license plate, and that only serves to degenerate our society. Rules are there for a reason, for without them we descend into chaos. This applies not only to behavior, but to all aspects of life, including communication. This may not be a lesson they have time to teach you in school now, but it is one you should take with you into the world. Until next time, CU l8r. I’ll brb.