I agree with Karen McCullough a lot about these three huge generations, I would just add a few things to it that won’t make Millennial’s look very good. But it depends on how you define these generations as well. Officially the Boomers go from 1946-64, which I think most people who look at that, don’t really buy that. It would mean someone born in 1944 is not a Boomer, even though they grew up and came of age, went to college, part of the Vietnam War, or perhaps were against it all in the 1960s. But someone born in 1963 would be a Boomer, even though they have none of the experiences as someone born in the late 1940s or early to mid 1950s, as someone born in 1944. Who technically is not a Baby Boomer.
The unofficial definition’s of these generations, would be Boomers born lets say from 1942 or 43, all the way up to 1960-61. Gen-Xers, my generation born from lets say 1961, maybe 1960 even, up to 1979 or 80, with Millennial’s being the last generation of the 20th Century, people born in the 1980s and 1990s. I agree with the unofficial definition, because someone born in the early 1960s has a hell of a lot more in common and experiences with a Gen-Xer, than someone born in the 1940s and 50s who is a Baby Boomer. To me at least Barack Obama even though he’s officially a Baby Boomer born in 1961, is the first President of the United States from Gen-X. He has a lot more in common with us, than the Baby Boomers.
Now I’ve talked about this before, but what like about the Boomers, is the Cultural Revolution, their support for equal rights, including for gays, the music of this generation. And that they made individualism popular, at least as it relates to personal issues. That Americans should be free to live their own lives without government or their families even interfering with that. Now as it relates to economics is where I differ with a lot of them, where a lot of them started off at least as Socialists in the 1960s and 70s and then someone of them moderated and became center-left Democrats as they matured. But a lot of them still believe we need a central government as big as the country. Meaning a welfare state big enough to take care of everyone.
Now what Gen-X has done, has built off of the color and racial blindness of the Boomers and believe in equal rights and treating people as exactly that and not as members of groups. As well as the individualism, but have applied individualism to both personal issues and economic issues. We are a big government out of our bedrooms and wallets generation. Which is why a lot of us support Ron Paul and Gary Johnson. But we are not all Libertarians, a lot of us are liberal-libertarian, people who are not anti-government, but don’t want a big government to try to manage our lives for us. A lot of us are New Democrats philosophically, I included and voted for Bill Clinton, John Kerry and Barack Obama for President.
I want to get off politics, because this post is not really about politics. But if socialism and Socialists ever makes a big run in America to the point that a Socialist or a Social Democrat can make a real run at the presidency, it will be because of Generation Y. These are people who not only watch MSNBC, but take it seriously and see it as news and not simply left-wing or far-left even spin on the issues of the say. So if Socialists and socialism ever grows to the point that people who call themselves Socialists and are proud of that and never run away from those labels, but lets say closeted Socialists who are still in the closet ideologically, because of that prefer to be called Progressives or even worst Liberals, you could see Socialists make a real run in America politically.
But Gen-Y is probably the most socialist generation we’ve seen, at least since the 1920s. They are very social democratic in nature politically and perhaps the only people in the country who actually watch MSNBC and that might be the only news they are interested in at all. This is not a generation by in large that is interested in what is called real news. They’re into tabloid news and celebrity culture, technology and soap operas. And the networks whether its entertainment, news or sports know this very well and know how big of a generation that they are and tailor their programming to fit this generation.
Millennial’s are also the now generation, to the point that everything that happened last year “is like so yesterday or old school” to them. Basically anything that was around either before they were born or too young to remember, they are not even familiar with, or do not respect. Because it is not happening now. Whether it’s news, sports or entertainment. Their favorite athletes and teams are all playing right now. Their favorites movies are what they just saw, or were made in this century. I know this from talking to a lot of them online and even in person.
If you are talking to a Millennial about football, the NFL didn’t start to 1980 or 81 or even the early 1990s. They’ll tell you the two best quarterbacks of all-time are Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. The best basketball player of all-time is of course Lebron James. Because again they aren’t into history and don’t remember Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird and sure as hell have never heard of Oscar Robertson. And the reasons they give for believing this, is that the players before played in a different era, meaning an older era and wouldn’t be able to keep up with the times. Which I think sounds stupid to anyone who knows better, but what are you going to do.
If the Boomers are the Me Generation and the Xers are the Live Free or Die Generation, not libertarian necessarily, but liberal-libertarian, than the Millennial’s are the now generation. “Because what is now, is what is happening and what is in the past, is so yesterday and old school that it is time to move on”. Now Millennial’s are still very young between 15-34 right now and they still have time to grow up and mature. But I think their lack of respect for history in general and that is current affairs, sports and entertainment, is my biggest beef with them. And I hope they do grow, so they can see what they’ve missed.