ISSUE-004

The luxuries and conveniences of contemporary life prevent people from developing into truly strong and independent individuals.


Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the statement and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, you should consider ways in which the statement might or might not hold true and explain how these considerations shape your position.


The rapid development of science and technology has made possible a wide range of modern innovations that greatly enhances the level of luxury and convenience in our daily life. At the same time, people have begun question the impact of such luxuries and conveniences on our individual traits. One school of thought suggests that it is harder now to become a truly strong and independent individual due to the spoiling of contemporary life, which I respectfully disagree in the grand scheme of things. That being said, I concede that physically modern luxuries and conveniences indeed make us weaker as well as less independent.

To begin with, it is true that modern life has freed us from tedious physical labor, and as a result, our bodily strength has weakened. Compared to our farmer ancestors who work in the field, the white collar workers today apparently have a weaker body. That is why the middle-class who wishes to lead a healthy life today opts to work out in gym, a painful process that is conducive to a strong body. At the same time, the rise of service industry has made us more connected to and dependent upon others than ever from a physical perspective. For example, delivery service has on one hand freed us from the burden of cooking at home, but on the other hand it prevented us from acquiring a skill essential to independent living. Therefore, it is undeniably true that our physical strength and independency is negatively affected by the modern conveniences.

However, the situation is completely different on the spiritual level. Instead of weakening our strength and the potential of becoming independent, modern technologies actually help us become a strong and independent individual. The key here is the free flow of information made possible by rapid developing communication technology. Today we can access to the news worldwide on our fingertip, learn the opinion of the most profound thinkers anywhere in the world, and eventually analyze the data by ourselves to arrive at an informed judgment. In other words, our ability of critical thinking is actually benefiting from the modern life that greatly facilitates the spread of information. We end up becoming a stronger thinker and a more independent citizen who cannot be easily cajoled by politicians and demogauges.

To sum up, while some modern-day conveniences certain weaken our physical strength and make people more physically interdependent on each other, they are actually helping us becoming a mentally stronger and independent thinker. I think the latter effect is more profound and far-reaching, and thus I overall disagree with the claim that luxuries and conveniences prevent us from becoming a truly strong and independent individual.



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