“Literacy is overrated.” Could this statement possibly be any more incorrect? How can one overlook the importance of literacy when it would be impossible to function in daily life without it? Reading, writing, talking– all of these are interrelated in literacy. We would be stuck in a situation where everyone functioned as robots and kept to themselves, if not for literacy. I believe that literacy is what shapes our society; therefore, its significance should always be valued.
Learning the components of literacy has allowed humanity to advance to the point that it is today. It is disturbing to even consider where we would be without it. There would be no way of communicating ideas or reading books to learn from the past. Great written works of art and innovative discoveries would not have been documented and therefore would not exist. Any advances forward in our society that had been based on this former knowledge would also be erased. Without literacy it would have been impossible for our society to progress. Proper schooling is also crucial in teaching children the literacy that they need to know to help better society. School is where children learn to read and write, so something that is this essential should not be taken lightly. Schools should work to improve literacy rates and make sure that their students are prepared for what they will need to know after college.
In addition, diversity would be stifled in our country if it were not for literacy. Learning another language would be difficult, therefore we would have a hard time communicating with anyone who did not speak English. America is known for its diversity and acceptance of others. This would not be possible if we did not take the time to learn other languages through school, books and their writings. Literacy broadens our horizons more than we ever take the time to think about.
How frustrating is it when you know you have an amazing idea but the ones you are trying to explain it to just cannot seem to grasp the concept that you are trying to get at? This is the feeling that we would all be forced to live with every day if it was not for literacy. We could have the most profound thoughts, but without reading, writing, and speaking, there would be no way to share these ideas with others. Literacy is disregarded far too often these days. We need to realize the importance of this gift we were given and utilize it whenever possible.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.