Throughout the United States, it is common knowledge that teenangers and those in early adulthood are viewed to be negligent and inferior drivers in comparison to those who are older than them. Amy Best points out how young drivers receive far more, if not virtually all, of the media attention in the allocation of blame about car accidents (Best 660). While teenagers driving dangerously is a concern, recent studies have shown that teenagers in general are obtaining their licenses later and driving less than in previous times. Although this might seem positive due to the discussed dangers of teenagers driving it leads to a question of where this is rooting from. In the past a drivers liscense represented independence and freedom attained only at the cusp of adulthood, but now most are waiting to attain this “license” to independence (Copeland). In the past, this desire for independence was a driving force of America’s youth, but this is no longer the case. Today, due to new technological,economical, and societal reasons, teenagers are obtaining their licenses at older ages than generations before them had.
In today’s day and age with new technologies popping up everyday, Teenagers are distracted by technology. In every form of their lives, technology is there. The Pew Internet Report relays its findings of teens and technology. With the overwhelming majority of teens, 95% of them use the internet and a whooping 78% have cell phones. When asked how often they utilize various means to communicate or socialize with people in their lives, 77% of seventeen year olds relayed that they used texting everyday to maintain connections with people in their lives. In comparison to that, only 34% of this age bracket shared that they spent time with others in person everyday to maintain connections (Lenhart, et al). With so many more teenagers maintaining connections via technology the necessary and desire to see people in person decreases. Melissa Nilles, a college student discusses how she “spends far too much time on Facebook trying to catch up with her 1000+ “friends,” most of whom she rarely sees” (Nilles). As teenagers shift to communicating and associating with friends over the phone and internet and away from in person meetings, the need to travel to maintain friendships subsides.
As Michael Sivak said:
It is possible that the availability of virtual contact through electronic means reduces the need for actual contact among young people, Furthermore, some young people feel that driving interferes with texting and other electronic communication. Also of importance, is the fact that younger people are moving in increasing numbers to large cities with reasonable public transportation….. (Daniels 1)
When travel is necessary, programs such as Moovit, an app that provides real-time transit data makes public transportation easier to use and more reliable then it ever was (Copeland). When teenagers are very infrequently driving it might...