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In a Video Age, Why Reading still Matters

You don't need another lecture on the importance of reading books. You get it, but honestly, who has the time anymore? Plus, we can catch most books when they become movies on Netflix, or I can check the summaries from websites, right? Wrong. Speaking and working in England this month has reminded me just howimportant the written word has been for the development of ideas and civilization.

This photo for this post is the office and library of Benjamin Disraeli, England's Prime Minister during theVictorian Age. His father Isaac was a scholar and writer, and bequeathed him 25,000 books. To pay off family debt, Disraeli sold most of that collection, but still retained 4,000 volumes.

We visited numerous historic manor houses of former leaders on this trip, and in almost every case, the library was the most treasured room. But today when I travel, I'm far more likely to see people watching a movie or playing a video game than reading a book. But in today's age of political correctness, trigger warnings, safe spaces, and micro-agressions, there's never been a more important time to confront challenging ideas. In the West, we're seeing our freedom of speech and expression slipping away day by day, and we must do everything we can to keep new ideas coming forward.

"All is mystery; but he is a slave who will not struggle to penetrate the dark veil." - Benjamin Disraeli