by Michael Smith (Veshengro)
While this is, more or less, a rhetorical question one thing is for sure and that is that we lived a somewhat quieter life in the days before the advent of the mobile telephone.
Let's face is, does one really have to hang on that thing all the time? It would appear that some people thing that they have to indeed and have a cell phone almost glued to their ear. Some even wear bluetooth devices on their ear even when walking in the park.. is that not taking things too far?
I am from a time before cell phones when the only way you could make a call when out and about was from a telephone box, or phone booth as our American cousins call it. And, while in certain places and at certain times some public phones were rather busy, in general there were no long lines outside them of people wanting to use them.
So, why, pray, does almost everyone today think that they must be on those devices 24/7 believing, it would appear, that that is the only way that they can have a social life?
Cell phones, are, and I do not deny that for one moment, useful, especially in an emergency and for those of that must conduct their business more or less on the move. But I think we should use them more responsibly.
Children do not need to have a cell phone for sure and definitely not any person under fourteen.
On the other hand, having said that, a simple cell phone for kids, as available in Germany, for instance, which has four or such pre-programmable buttons which allows them to call home and such only and one button with which to call the emergency services may be useful for younger kids who travel long distances to school on foot or bicycle or who roam free in the woods and such.
When I, however, see, as I have, in Britain, children as young as eight with smart phones sitting on a park benches next to one another and instead of talking texting each other then I do know for sure that this is not a good idea. This is not the way to go.