In a society of stimulated youth

The subjective meanings of maturity and how it is reflected in our youth

Ashleigh Tain, Editor-in-Chief

In our February Print Issue, we covered the idea of stimulated youth on social media platforms and lifestyle. We connected the social implications of maturity and why our youth is considered to be lacking it. However, as these young online users are manipulating social media, the internet is plagued with irresponsibility and naive usage. These users, ranging from elementary to middle schoolers, are considered too young and immature to be embracing social media to such an extent.

But how do we measure this quality in a society where social media and other amenities of society stand so strongly? When is it appropriate to be considered mature?

From an outside perspective, it is easy to say that technology consumption has reached an all-time high. We see not only teens, but younger users are speaking with more developed language, listening to crudely laced music, idolizing ‘reputable’ figures who stand for vulgar themes, prioritizing physical appearance, and desperately clawing at the concept of maturity. Maturity, however, is a highly subjective idea. While it can mean reaching a particular age to think clearly, it also captures the essence of freedom, responsibility, and decision.

On the other hand, many children feel their ability to demonstrate maturity is suppressed. Because they are often affiliated with the stereotype of social media addiction and ignorant nature, their reputations are tainted as immature and incapable. However, in this generalization, we neglect the potential that our youth encapsulates.

Things such as methods and purposes of expression should be used to justify how our youth is sculpting their artistic freedom. As social media posts are broadcasting emotion and documenting memories, they should be handled as if they are a contribution to our ever-evolving culture and society. They should be viewed by how they translate and communicate rather than being judged and generalized for consumption. To an extent, this should be considered, as social media also serves as fun outlets and other lighthearted purposes.

Outside of technology consumption, maturity can be measured by awareness and responsibility. Whether it means putting down a device and deciding to go adventure a reality that isn’t pixelated or understanding and adapting sympathy and privilege, awareness is a genuine measurement of the advancement of our mindset in thinking outside of ourselves. Our youth should be ready to progress into the future by understanding how privilege grants us the opportunity to evolve.

To students and older siblings; help to communicate to our stimulated youth the purpose of social media and teach awareness and privilege before it is too late.