Alright, I'm not the biggest fan of e-readers, but unlike some people opposed to e-readers, I do see the benefits of their existence. They just aren't for me.
Five Reasons Why E-Readers are NOT the Worst Thing in the World:
1. They will not put libraries out of business
People are always surprised by this, but you can check out e-books from most libraries. Yes, all of you agoraphobes can keep your bodies planted in front of your computer screens and have the books come to you. You never have to set foot in a library again and yet, you'll be keeping them alive! Look into it at your library if you haven't already, it's completely worth it. On that note, you can download audio books as well. Try Tina Fey's Bossypants, she reads it herself.
2. They weigh less
I think this is a weak argument from people who say they can bring 8 books with them on vacation instead of 1, or whatever. You shouldn't be reading 8 books on vacation. Go to a museum and get cultured. I never tell people not to read, but really, find something else to do.
However, I do think that things like textbooks would be an amazing thing to have on an e-reader. High-schoolers have terrible back problems, or at least the ones at my school did. We had strict locker time rules: in the morning before homeroom, during lunch, and after school. That was it. Well, lunch is 4th period out of 5 periods and I always had the last lunch, which meant I got to walk around with 4 classes worth of binders and textbooks all day. My right shoulder is significantly lower than my left. True story. E-book versions of textbooks would help alleviate some of that pain. Granted it would be an extravagant purchase, but it would be useful.
For research purposes, electronic information is always valuable for fast searches. Tables of Contents and indexes can only bring you so far. Electronic searches can bring you right to the word. However, I do think that makes a lot of people lazy and they end up not reading books or articles in their entirety and instead only search for the information they need. So it's a useful tool to have, but I don't think it should stand in the way of reading things as a whole.
4. Reading Positions
Alright, this reason is one I'm actually jealous of. Sometimes it's hard to find a difficult way to sit and read a really large/long book (*cough* Order of the Phoenix) whether you are sitting or lying down. With an e-reader, you can pretty much lie down any which way.
5. Environment Friendly
My bookshelves are a reflection of so many trees cut down in their prime. E-readers help cut that down a bit (see what I did there?).