I will not waste any time getting into specifics of each set of generational differences and similarities between Gen-X and Gen-Y. Who has it better that who? Well, that depends on your own perspective.
While I am certainly not stating that Gen-X were dumb when they were kids, I most certainly believe that Gen-Y’s youth is far more educated and has more resources than the previous generation, when they were kids. In today’s society, there are far more educational resources, which is not limited to the rotting public school system. When I was in high school, I only cared for the electives and foreign language courses, in addition to science. I didn’t see the point. Lots of what I know now, I have learned from the school of hard knocks, life experiences, plus the internet. With so much knowledge on the internet, which is more useful than most of what’s pushed down our throats as adolescents, there is no excuse for stupidity. The previous generation did not have these resources and based on the stories I have heard, their parents were too busy with their occupations or trying to instill the fear of God or the ass-whippings upon their offspring. But somehow, they arguably turned out “alright”.
This new generation of adults has become disinterested in what should be seen as bare necessities, but turns out to be expansive liabilities. In an odd way, transportation and relationships have become part of those things a segment of us have no interest in. Dissention made a blog topic – which I found depressing – about why Gen-Y is not too thrilled about vehicle purchasing, driving souped-up cars and maintaining jobs. This reasons are self-explanatory in an age of capitalism, in addition to our own healthy cynicism and disrespect for the whole marriage-and-kids routine (although Gen-Y has it’s share of single mothers and breeding studs). Let’s face it, some jobs will not hire us and some property owners will not allow us to rent or buy houses unless we present ourselves as traditional (meaning unless we are married with children). The fact that we have more options than our parents only plays a small role, believe it or not. What other reasons are there? Honestly, we desire more, refuse to struggle like the older generation or because we have observed and heard too many horror stories of what had bestowed upon our parents. As a result, we are not trying to become carbon copies of those before us (or should I say “generation xerox”). It may look as if Gen-Y is full of stereotypical “young, dumb and full of come know-it-alls”. Many of us actually have taken the time out to ask “What am I doing this shit for?”, instead of keeping up with the Joneses or doing shit because an adult told us to or because God might get us. We happen to question things, including the natural changes of climate and living costs. It seems to me that as more people catch clues on how not to get fucked over, the harder times become.
What I find heartbreaking is that in the previous generation, if men were not in college, most men went off to wars and fought for their countries. In this generation, many young men I know have no interest in doing so and would rather be in college. Which is understandable. I may be wrong, but the last time I’ve checked, a book like The Way Of Men blames this on a post-feminist society. But I agree with Gen-X when they say most of Gen-Y has become lazy. Why is this? Is it because our parents spoiled us? Or is it due to the gritty realism that times have become harder and we may be living in the last days? Gen-X has gotten away with a lot of shit that we can not, even though we have our own hell to raise. We bounce from bedfellow to bedfellow and we also bounce from job to job. It is no different from travelers going from state to state or country to country. We do not feel comfortable staying in one place for too long. It’s not really productive and it become disturbingly boring. This is probably the reason why more Gen-Y men and women have become less moral those before us. Who the fuck should ever become content with staying in the same cubical/room, eating the same shit every day?
My stepfather always told me that once a person approaches 40, if they have not learned or done anything with themselves, most likely they will never do so. Most people in that age rank become too set into their ways, whether they are innate or otherwise. I have seen many men in that age rank who have become burned-out to say that I agree with the man. But what happens when people believe that 40 is the new 30 or act accordingly? And should we blame things like genetics? Desire for eternal youth? Or the amount of life lived in our early years?
Most young persons in previous generations have spent their youth living for others, doing the right thing or trying to save face. Fortunately for Gen-Y, we have the strength to deviate from that. However, Gen-X is still running shit. Mixing the old school with the new school does create anarchy in the sense of creating gullibility and severe identity crises among fresh persons who may have difficulties going their own way (or seeking approval from family, lawmakers, their peers and the rest of society who does not know what it’s like to choose certain routes, yet assume their opinions really do mean shit). This brings me to the point of agreement of Dr. Haha Lung, when he stated that family can be our biggest liability, preventing us from moving forward. We drop everything to come to their aid and that very thing we drop could be the very thing someone else is trying to take from us or use against us. That thing we drop could be opportunity we may never see again in a lifetime.
I am happy to be part of Gen-Y. We have our issues and one major issue is that we are stuck in between the age of being right versus taking risks. While we are fourteen years into the new millennium, we still have a smaller segment of the human populace (the morals police and our elders) who try to push their morals onto us all, in addition to their attempts to desexualize us, interfering with our healthy social and sexual development. But why the fuck should anyone care about who is fucking who? Is who George fucking making his mother come? Seriously? Little do they know, we may not be the ones to nurse them in their old age. Blame it on karma, our productivity or whatever else. Our elders fear us and for us, just like they fear karma for the misfortunes they may have inflicted on others when they were once wild and fearless. You ever notice that these are the ones who become hyper-religious as they become feeble and lonely, trying to clear their resume before they meet their maker?
I’ve seen all of the bullshit my grandmother put my father and mother through when I was five years of age. My father asked me one evening, “Do you know that your grandmother pulled a shotgun on me, just because I wanted to visit my family in South Carolina? And she assumed that I was cheating on your mother. The year after that, my father died.” I know it, because the woman pulled a shotgun out on me when I was only five. Though she has done worse than this historically, once my stepfather came into the picture (who had more balls than my biological father), that shit started to get old. She realized that her attitude was only as strong as everyone else’s stupidity.
The older generation is declining. While it is said that they are still running shit, we have to be the change we want to see in the world, as Gandhi once pointed out. Some are aware of this while others voluntarily and involuntarily fall into societal expectations… or fall into digression, regression or oppression. Whatever the case may be. Gen-Y has their problems; For one, we have a tendency to misuse and abuse resources and spend our time on stupid shit (video games, smartphones, social networks, computers, etc.) and this is one reason why corporations are reluctant to hire most twenty-somethings, even if they have credentials. This is why we are accused of being “the dumbest generation”. We have hardly any respect for authority, we are disloyal and vain. But I do not complain about these things (as my loyalty is with me, vanity keeps me young and I am my own authority).
So, if this generation is fucked up, who the hell raised it? Who did we learn it from? Who are we trying to refrain from becoming? Who is feeding into the pathology? Many of us try our hardest to create a life with no hurt. To some degree, this is where flings and NSA/FWB sex comes in, which is a vital and superior substitute for LTRs and marriages. We find ourselves drifting away from family and scrutiny. This is also why people prefer social network dependency and substituting human interaction with overvaluing career moves. Last time I spoke to this fine-ass, bootylicious Latina girl, she was hell-bent on moving out of her mother’s house; a mother whom she made it clear she despised. With Thanksgiving being around the corner, she admits she never did “the family thing” during the holidays. She did not get along with her mother’s boyfriend, calling them both “stupid”. She has two jobs and spends all of her spare time either with her daughter or partying with friends. Family orientation does not occur to her, whatsoever. But in this generation, there is more like her.