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Fri
29
Jan
2016

Why the Word "Millennial" Makes me Cringe

In which Hank responds to and adds to an article John wrote about Millennials (http://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/01/stop-patronising-young-people-and-start-listening) and discusses how uninteresting it has become to discuss generations as homogenous, and also why we seem to talk about what's wrong with one group without discussing the problems they face.

I think we're really good at picking out negative attributes...those are the things we notice, and they're the things we write about. Sure, I'm concerned that young people won't vote, but I also understand that it is difficult to be civically engaged in a world that is divorced from your reality. I also feel like people raised in the world of deep partisanship and access to infinite information (all of it sensationalized) find not just politics but life itself overwhelming, as if every decision they make is an opportunity to either save or destroy the world.

I myself was born in 1980, the cutoff between Generation X and Millennial, and while I'm fairly old I also spend a lot of time interacting with and thinking about young people, so I guess it's unsurprising that I'm sympathetic. But talking about the behavior of young people without talking about the challenges they face is dumb. And talking about one or two tendencies to behave slightly differently than other generations and then blaming that on one or two new-fangled parenting techniques (helicopter parenting) is just /awful/ sociology.

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Duration: 3:46
Views: 883,530
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