Grammar. Punctuation. Spelling. Verb usage. Common Sense.
What has happened to these five terms? The more and more I browse the Internet, the more and more I regret doing so. I have always known the general public of this country to be less than scholarly, but the younger generation (even younger than me) makes me fearful of the future. This may be harsh (and possibly exaggerated for effect), however it needs to be said because it holds grains of truth - for more than one reason.
It wasn't too long ago that I sat in a middle school or high school English class. I remember the dull grammar lectures and the spelling tests that made me want to fall asleep half the time. But, as much as I didn't realize it then, I'm thankful I paid attention 85% of the time.
As I now enter my last year of college I look back on some of the things I wrote "way back when" and compare it to some of the things that are being written NOW by the high school generation. Quite honestly I'm not impressed and am convinced that the majority of youth is brain washed by pop culture OR they just lack functioning brain cells all together.
What am I referring to, right? The website today that has become the biggest festering place of recurring stupidity is YouTube. I'll admit, I visit YouTube a lot for watching music videos or other random videos my friends tell me about BUT you'll never find me sounding like a completely uneducated ape. How does one sound like a completely uneducated ape? You'd be surprised at the number of ways, most of which I'm sure you've come across. Here is a list of just a few of the things that annoy me most:
1. Made up words that now pass for slang - It is not cool to use stupid words that Mr. Webster didn't create as ways to express you point. No one can take you seriously when you say fo'shizzle.
2. I blame you Mr. Rapper! - I cannot entirely blame today's youth. It all boils down to role models in the present day and age. More and more I find teens idolizing their favorite pop culture star and no where can one see these shining beacons of stupidity than MTV (most notably V.I.C.). Please take a moment and follow me to YouTube for a V.I.C. education (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SG4xnTnFnJw) . That is his latest single "Get Silly," which is the typical rapper/hip hop artist video today. However, it's when he steps away from his ridiculously dressed entourage and electronically produced "beats" that he makes me want to ban any kid from listening to or watching him. For example...(http://www.mtv.com/overdrive/?vid=227243). "Like, like, like, you know what I'm sayin', like, like, like, you know what I'm sayin'." How many of today's youth sounds like this? Bet you'll need more than fingers and toes to count. That's the scary part! Record yourself, play it back and realize THIS IS NOT COOL. Which brings me to my next point...
3. Valley girl language - "LIKE, OMG! NO WAY! TOTALLY! FOR REAL!? ummmm....like seriously." DUMB. DUMB. DUMB. We all fall victim to this language. Out of excitement, nerves, etc. However, it it when this language dominates your day to day speech that you need to learn how to use a thesaurus or deliberately try NOT to say these words. It is especially bad when someone uses these filler words (most notably "like") in writing! You have time to edit and proofread your work...DO IT...and if you don't have time, DON'T WRITE OR COMMENT ON THE INTERNET! ...please?
4. Just plain inexcusable "stupid speak" - let's turn back to our friend V.I.C. and focus now on the comments left by YouTube members (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SG4xnTnFnJw). Dis. Dat. Luv. Thiz. And, to quote user JrPenguin320: "Thiz shit suck on my cook man wat up wit this shit man wtf they cant make anything good man !!!!!!!!!!!!" And the best example is the full screen text from this YouTube video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7q1SAXHYFho&feature=related ).
Before some get all up and arms about any or all of the aforementioned statements let me just say this:
I realize that a certain extent of this language is due to a severe lack of maturity. When I was in high school I'm sure those older than me thought similar things about my generation. However, I feel as though this disregard for grammar, spelling and word choice is taking over the Internet more and more. Put simply (and nicely)...it depresses, annoys and baffles me. And while I don't expect those that fall victim to these four obviously pointed out faults to care...you at least can read (I hope) and if you're thinking about what has been presented here - mission accomplished (somewhat).