Thursday, May 22, 2014

These Kids Today

There is yet another piece out there complaining about the new generation of young adults and how they were coddled (no link because I am not going to read it nor should you).  Oh no, the millennials will rule some day!

Give me a break.  What is the difference between generalizations and generations?  Some generalizations are better than others.  Generations are not better--they just face different circumstances and some react better than others.

The Greatest Generation?  What did they do before World War II that was so special?  Surviving the great depression?  Well, other folks have done that.  More importantly, there were those in that generation that reacted well to events and others that sucked.  Remember those who were isolationists and who admired Hitler?  Yeah, those folks, like Lindbergh.  Great in some says, lousy in others.  We forget that the WWII folks were a mix. 

I hate generalizing about generations because it almost always becomes comparisons where the older folks dismiss the younger folks.  What makes a generation is exposure to the same experiences like WWII, Vietnam, the Sexual Revolution, the AIDS epidemic, 9/11.  But a generation is not a generation because people respond to the these experiences in the same way because they do not.

Any boomer who wants to complain about the millennials might just want to think about their comparative contexts as the boomers enjoyed some of the best economic times in US history as they grew up and went out into the world.  Millennials?  Not so much.

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