Virginia Heffernan’s article in The New York Times, Calling Blue: And on That Farm He Had a Cellphone, dated 26th January 2007, talks about a television series show for children that tries to teach children about farm life (Heffernan, 2007). . The article talks about many issues that are both contemporary and traditional. Through the article, many issues have been raised by the author. For instance, the article has revealed the changes that have been brought up by cell phones. Ever since their invention, cell phones have played an integral role in shaping how humans communicate with one another. Through cell phones, the world has been converted into a global village where people can share almost anything with others who are far away. They are also portable as people can walk with their cell phones and access its content anywhere and at any time. That was not possible before their invention. The article talks about Nick Jr. planning to release the show on multiple channels. One of those channels is through “wireless carriers” (Heffernan, 2007). That shows that cell phones are a great avenue for spreading the message. The producers of the show can share the themes of the show to many people around the world through their cell phones without the need of watching television. Many people can access cell phones thereby making it easier to communicate the shows main message.
The article also has an underlying claim by the author is that the children of nowadays are not conversant with farm life. Therefore, they do not need to learn about it. She feels that farm life is a lifestyle that has become obsolete and outdated. Thus, they should not be taught to children. Instead, children should be taught “about A.T.M., ring tones, cup holders, and Best Buys” (Heffernan, 2007). That claim is easily noticed in the first few paragraphs of the article.
Although many people may think that the author’s claim are wide off the mark, he qualifies those claims in the article. The author is certain that today’s generation will not benefit from any education derived from the life in the farm. She does not seem to discuss the probability or the possibility of that happening. She seems to have the fact about the situation thereby qualifying her claims. She claims that instead of teaching children how to conduct their activities on the farm, children should be schooled how to operate ATMs. They should also be taught what cubicles are or how to set their cell phones’ ringtones. Children should also be taught how to conduct Best Buys. By teaching them all those, the will be in tandem with the changing technology (Ramey, 2012). Thus, they will be able to cope with any advancement in technology.
I find the author’s argument valid and convincing to the readers. Farm life played a crucial role in shaping the life of people in the past. It gave people life lessons that have benefited today’s society. However, the world has been overtaken by technology. Everything depends on technology and its advancement. Many activities that were done on the farm are now conducted by machines so as to make work easier and faster. As a result, the role that people play in the farms has been curtailed (Ramey, 2012). Therefore, it would be pointless to teach children some farm activities that will almost become obsolete in the future. Instead, children should be taught how to operate those machines so as to save both the energy and time. For instance, people used to milk cows that took a lot of time and energy to finish. With technological advancements, milking machines have been invented to help with the milking process.
Moreover, the author warrants that “Blue’s Room” is a show that has become outdated and should not be shown in today’s world (Heffernan, 2007). She claims that although the producers’ intentions were good, the spin-off show should not have been produced. She backs he warrants by claiming that nowadays children are more interested in learning how to use technological gadgets such as cell phones and ATM’s instead of learning farm activities like milking a cow. She also states that family farms have become scarce due to the agribusiness that is being conducted by people. Therefore, the children will find it hard to learn about farm life and if they do it would not benefit them in today’s world (Ramey, 2012).
I agree with the warrants presented by the author. Although the experience of farm life might sound exciting to some children, the majority of them will shun the experience. Many children would rather sit and concentrate on their electronic gadgets than go out in the field and milk cows or collect eggs. That means that the experience is slowly fading as children are becoming more entertained by their cell phones, iPods, and iPads. Farm life will present a distraction to their usual life, and many will not enjoy it.
Despite all those arguments by the author on why farm life may be detrimental to children, a rebuttal argument will still suffice. Not all children will hate the experience of a farm life. There is a small percentage of children who will greatly enjoy the experience thereby gaining ample knowledge that might help them in other fields. The technology might help people in saving time and energy, but there are instances that necessitate people to discard the technology and get their hands dirty to work. In those instances, farm life is vital.
Heffernan, V. (2007). TELEVISION REVIEW – Calling Blue – And on That Farm He Had a Cellphone. The New York Times. Retrieved from http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9F0CE0D7163FF935A15752C0A9619C8B63Ramey, K. (2012). Use of Technology In Agriculture | Use of Technology. Retrieved from http://www.useoftechnology.com/technology-agriculture/