Milton Academy students did not text for 24 hours last week, and that, they say, was only the beginning.
In memory of Merritt Levitan, a Milton Academy student who was struck by a car and killed while on a group cross-country bike trip in July, three students urged students to take a break from their phones Oct. 7, according to a post on the school’s website.
“Often, we live not in the real world but in the virtual one, checking our Facebook pages, our email, our Twitter accounts,” said Emmie Atwood, one of the organizers of the campaign. “Merritt, however, lived in the most real way possible. She was always completely attached to what was happening right in front of her. She embodied life in its truest form. Although the TextLess campaign is designed to prevent texting and driving, we want our movement to be bigger than that: Our goal is to decrease excessive phone use and encourage people to focus on the interactions taking place right in front of them. In this way, we want to honor Merritt’s authentic and present way of living.”
The organizers say they want the no text campaign to continue on for other days, not just the one:
“If we do this for only one day, it’s meaningless,” said Atwood in the post. “We want the campaign to be active and continuous, so we will do things throughout the year. We are contacting other schools, and some students from other schools are signing on.”