Although the United States is the most powerful country in the world, with its high economy rate and “dot comers” at its highest peak ever, it is unfortunately, sad to say that the elevating illiteracy rate is also at its highest peak also. Even though the U. S. has the lowest rate among the other world countries, illiteracy still is a problem today that many U. S. citizens struggle with.
A generalization of illiteracy is not being able to functionally read or write and “is essentially associated with poverty”(National Institute of Literacy p94) Whereas the definition of illiteracy stated by Webster (p413) is being unable to read and write; uneducated; having or showing a lack of knowledge of fundamentals on a particular subject. No one is capable of looking at another person and realizing that they are functionally illiterate, because illiterate people make it difficult to detect because they are so good at covering it.
The literate public does not realize the size of the literacy problem today. They think everyone is literate, but more than 40 million Americans 16 years of age and older have only basic reading and writing skills, according to the U. S. department of education. WWW. galegroup. com Customarily, citizens apt to looking down upon those who are not functionally literate and who were deprived of the education that those who aren”t illiterate were taught These people are illiterate because they never had the opportunity to learn, or when they had the opportunity, they lacked the motivation to learn.
There are many problems that an illiterate person will face when trying to live a normal day-to-day life, because they had a lack of motivation, which makes it very hard for an illiterate person to get around or even survive. Because of this, many help tactics have been underway so that they may have assistance in getting important things done. Despite the dispossession of not being able to functionally read and write, there are various problems that an individual, and that individuals” family are faced with.
Such types of problems are not being able to make out a grocery, fill out important documents, such as health care information to better facilitate them and their family, and not being able to apply for a well-positioned job because they are unable to comprehend what the application is asking. These problems are like a domino effect amongst illiterate persons. Once one problem is dealt with another one appears to happen very shortly afterward. Take for example an illiterate mother who has two young children who have not been educated how to read nor write yet.
This mother has a low-income job, because of lack of reading proficiency skills, which makes her have a very tight budget for her single family home. On a regular trip to the grocery store this mother would first have to ration her money out so that she would still have money for miscellaneous things. She would only be able to rely on pictures and normally bought things. While at the checkout line this mother would not be able to count her money alone, because she is “functionally illiterate”, so she would definitely be in need of assistance.
Major companies and businesses have realized the illiteracy rate increase and have taken action to try and remedy the problem. There are many ways in which these places have tried to assist in helping these illiterate persons. When illiterate persons enter a social work office, in need of some sort of care “they mainly recognize there names and that”s about it” says Peggy McEldon, of Dinnwiddie Department of Social Services. She also goes on to say that “often times people come in with their forms already filled out and completed all they have to do is put the information in the system. sometimes for some support they will bring a relative or an authorized person to speak or sign papers for them, if someone can”t read or write they can sign with an “X”. (Peggy McEldon)
Most importantly whatever help that is needed they are entitled to do whatever is possible to reach their need. In another situation at the local Department of Motor Vehicles, such assistance to an illiterate person trying for a drivers” license is instead of a computer test given, an oral test would be given, to ask questions as to where they stand. most people who come in with needs of assistance is young people”(Linda Hall, Front Hall Desk).
In the most multicultural nation in the world, it is not uncommon to come across illiterate persons in your day-to-day life. In the 3rd world countries the crisis of illiteracy has usually been demoted. More and more however, literacy is threatening the continual development of highly industrialized nations. Though there are many sources that illiterate persons can go to to get help and assistance, illiterate persons will still not be able to survive very long with knowing little knowledge.
Although it seems as though their will never be a halt in the growth of illiteracy, we find that most people will hold educators accountable for the lack of literate people that walk the face of this earth, even though it”s the illiterate people who lack in the skills needed to perform his or her purpose. Consequently as the standards increase, population grows, and the educational system falters, illiteracy will continue to be one of America”s worst problems; and the number of illiterate people will continue to rise.
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