Adopt-a-Word: PRIVACY, Before it is Lost Forever
Hundreds of words are eradicated from the English language every year because they are no longer used. Hard-working, colorful, deep meaning words that once peppered the speeches of our ancestors, now go unused, discarded and replaced by new, shiner, sleeker words.
According to the Oxford Dictionaries company, which has begun a grassroots campaign to Adopt-a-Word, "Ninety percent of everything we write today is communicated by just 7,000 words."
One word that has been slowly disappearing from our language is PRIVACY. A word that means so little to a younger generation brought up on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, cell phones, texting, emails, the list is endless and the majority of teens use these platforms to confess everything from heartbreaks to hook-ups. The concept of PRIVACY is merely a ghost throughout the hallways of our schools and colleges.
The story about Rutgers’ student Tyler Clementi is tragic. Life is tough at any age, but our high school and college years are where we seem to get our lifelong wounds when unrequited love, divorce, rejection, betrayal and failure are introduced with few elixirs to penetrate the damage. In a recent survey of high school students, "Sixty percent said they had thought about killing themselves," according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
As young adults, we are finding ourselves. It is not a collective effort or a group project, but in today's open culture, too many have a part in how our children will see themselves. With no boundary of privacy, our children often see themselves through another's eyes, by what is posted on a page, tweeted to a friend, or surreptitiously filmed and blasted out to friends and acquaintances.
Young love is fragile; no it is downright excruciating. I can only imagine what Tyler Clementi felt when he found out that something so private and personal was being viewed by others. Imagine being awkward and uncomfortable and then finding out the memory was not yours alone to cherish or discard.Continued on the next page