Self Expression, Dual Identity


Facebook photo albums can be compared to scrapbooks that were more popular in previous decades. The fact that photos are updated more rapidly and more far spread could be due to how the method of recording events has changed over time, yet the experiences people are having may not be. The idea that who people are online is not necessarily who they are in person is the same as seeing people posing in old photographs. The comments we make on social media aren’t so different from notes being passed in the halls, or even sending letters long distance.

Senior Kai Meyer said, “I feel that kids nowadays hold too many emotions and thoughts to themselves. It’s crucial to me to express what’s on my mind, and mainstream icons importing their methods to the youth is not really a good thing to me.”

For all of the ways of self-expression that people have, they are still usually a product of popular culture. People adopt the fashions, hairstyles, and hobbies of their times, just as their parents did before them. Just because something changes faster and is less permanent, doesn’t mean that it is less relevant.

“You gotta be comfortable expressing yourself in different environments, and that is crucial. Not necessarily good at it, because no one is, but just comfortable,” said Meyer.

Kids today have many ways to express themselves. Social media is an example that many people of all ages partake in. “What’s on your mind,” Facebook asks at the top of the home screen of Facebook.

But the problem is that it just so happens that some people might abuse their voice in these social media outlets such as Facebook and become incoherent to users’ “friends” or followers. Sometimes to the point where some users don’t even read or recognize the content presented.

Junior Tim Martin said, “I’ve come to dislike Facebook. Too much drama. I’m more of a Twitter kind of dude. A wise man once said, ‘I’m a peacock, you gotta let me fly’, and that’s how I see it.”

It becomes a question if people are truly dying for an outlet to express themselves or use it to manipulate others perceptions of them, for better or for worse. What can’t be lost in our younger generations is the skill to develop genuine judgment. Never underestimate the power of introducing yourself with a firm, solid handshake, and making direct eye-contact without feeling uncomfortable.

Steve Powell the DHS librarian said “In our day and age there is a need for both privacy and publicity. And believe it or not, it is important to find a balance.”