There’s no denying that society has made many advancements since the time of our grandparents. Technology, automobiles, education and even communication have all transcended what we had thirty or more years ago. We continue moving forward, but at what cost?

Country singer Ronnie Dunn’s song “Cost of Living” examines society today. He says “__________ gas prices lyrics. He says that the cost of living is high and continues to increase dramatically. We’ve all witnessed the steady rise of gas prices that keep depleting our bank accounts. As our economy continues on this rollercoaster of a recession, it’s difficult for many to handle the rising costs of living today. Cook County is experiencing astronomical taxes and all Illinoisans will have to pay more than ever for their train tickets to any destination in the state. Even toll ways have significantly increased in price, making commuting to school that much more expensive.

I will be the first to admit that our means of communication today are amazing. The fact that people who are separated from each other by thousands of miles can see each other via programs like Skype instead of just hearing each other’s voices on the phone is remarkable. Smart phones and their apps also make life easier, but all of these features come with a downside. We’re always attached to our phones. Instead of enjoying the company we’re with, we always look to the next best thing. We should be cherishing our time with loved ones instead of letting gadgets control our consciousness.

Along with this preoccupation with technology is the competition to “keep up with the Joneses”. It seems that the need to have the most, rules our actions today. As Americans, it seems that our priorities have been screwed up. We’ve been living beyond our means for so long that we’ve forgotten what matters most.

We’ve lost the ability to cherish the little things in life.

We, at the Candor, would like to give some advice. Coming back from winter break, I’ve realized how little I’ve spent with my family and friends in the past few months. Of course, school takes its toll, but I think our relentless distractions make matters no better. Make more of an effort to put your phone down, close your laptop, and turn of the television and simply chill with the people who matter most. I think that’s a new years resolution worth committing to.