Media ruins relationships

Wyatt Waters, Opinion Editor

Today, Liberty High School is overrun. Not by Martian overlords or fifth-dimensional beings, but by something far more sinister: social media. At all times of the day, patriots are using applications like Snapchat, Facebook and Twitter to interact with others electronically, often at the expense of their relationships with those around them.
Undeniably, social media has revolutionized our society. Allowing for people from any location to interact with one other, it is making the world a little smaller each day. This incredible revolution in human communication has enabled people from all parts of the world to share ideas and thoughts on a fast-paced and public forum. As much as social media expands a person’s social range, however, it also hinders their social skills in face-to-face interactions.
Everyone has seen that one couple sitting at restaurant together, both absorbed into their respective Apple or Samsung device. Neither are speaking, or even looking at each other, but rather they are writing or photographing their next post. It’s not just couples as well, for social media wreaks similar devastation upon entire friend groups of 5 or 6 as well.
Besides awkwardly silent tables at restaurants and cafés, what are the long-term effects of this style of social media usage? Most noticeably, people become more apt to pull out their phone and browse social media rather than strike up casual conversation. As a result, people don’t practice crucial social skills, such how to use body language and tone to talk to another in an engaging way. This builds social anxiety, which in turn makes people seek solace in the electric glow of their smartphones even more than before. Thus, the degenerative cycle continues.
To preserve our ability to speak and interact without relying on emoji’s and text slang, we, as a society, must realize the importance of the here and now. Whatever is said and done on social media will remain there forever, but the same is not true for reality. That date with your significant other or that family outing will only happen once. Therefore, live those important moments to fullest, and when you’re done, social media will be waiting for you.