Yes, books. Remember those? I love all of the arguments behind why we should all buy expensive e-readers. They're portable. You can read them in the sun. They have a long battery life. You know what else is portable? A book. Know what else you can read in the sun? A book. Know what will never, ever need recharged? A book. Now, I'm not so stubborn that I won't admit that an e-reader might be useful in some situations. They're probably helpful in the long run when it comes to textbooks, for example. However, this whole ad campaign trying to convince us all to replace our actual libraries with virtual ones is just ridiculous. Want to know where it gets even more ridiculous? They're marketing these monstrosities to children. Companies are making brightly-colored e-readers for little ones. I'm sure that does wonders for the attention span. Teach them to read as long as the books can talk to them, just like the television. It doesn't stop there, either. Just in case we're not spoiling children enough, we can also buy them their very own digital cameras and laptops. If you buy the e-reader, the laptop, and the digital camera for your child, you've spent about $130 before tax.
Does it not seem odd that some eight-year olds are running around with electronic devices instead of playing outside while the money spent on those gadgets might have helped a child in need? While we're spending money on electronics for toddlers, other young ones don't even have very basic needs. How much food do you think $130 could have bought for a starving person? How much would $130 mean to a child who needs money to go to a real home? How much would $130 help a child with Down Syndrome or HIV?
How much longer can we ignore this injustice? What are we going to do about it?