Why You Gotta Be So Rude (to Millennials)?

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It seems that lately, I’ve been seeing more and more blogs and opinion pieces bashing on millennials. Everywhere I turn on social media and news sites, a new piece pops up telling me why my generation is the worst, and that we’re not doing enough to succeed. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told “Get a good job, buy a car, buy a house.” If you stray from the status quo, a whole new barrage of millennial hate gets sent your way! But what brings all of this on? Why are members of older generations, and even older members of Gen Y, hating on younger millennials so much?

If you stray from the status quo, a whole new barrage of millennial hate gets sent your way! Click To Tweet

Recently I came across an article that listed the top five reasons to hate on millennials. You know what ranked in at number one? The number one reason this author stated as valid cause to hate on millennials was that we aren’t patriotic enough. The author states, “Less than a third of millennials say the United States is the greatest country in the world … a collection of charts and maps prove, indisputably, that America is Number 1 at many different things. What gives, millennials?”

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And to that I say yes, America is number one in many industries and in numerous ways economically. I’m grateful to live in a country that is relatively safe and prosperous, but turning a blind eye to its history and current issues isn’t helping anyone. As millennials, we face all of this criticism for being unaware and unpatriotic, when in reality, we have access to more information about current and past events than any generation before us. We’re criticized for being uninformed, and then criticized again for taking up the cry for justice in incidents like the one in Ferguson earlier this year. The young millennials who take up arms have been deemed “Social Justice Warriors,” a name that has been dragged through the muck lately. The way I see it, young people are trying their best to be informed and make their voices heard, and I don’t understand why that’s deserving of hate or criticism.

Young people are trying their best to be informed and make their voices heard. Click To Tweet

If there’s one phrase I learned rings with truth, it’s the one that goes “everyone’s a critic.” It’s so true. As millennials, we’ve been criticized and berated about so much that we’ve begun to blame ourselves for problems that may not necessarily be our faults.

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Like I said before, members from older generations maintain the baby boomer mentality and then push it onto a generation that lives under completely different circumstances. In an article on The Guardian, author Eleanor Robertson states,

“The boomer mentality goes like this: get a good education. Get a well-paying full-time job. Find a stable partner. Buy a house and a car. Preferably, have a child. Failing any stage of this process [in the eyes of the boomer generation] is a reflection of your self-worth and indicates a lack of moral fibre.”

It would seem that in the boomer mentality, success is measured by the ability to follow a strict guidebook. But millennials are struggling with issues that didn’t even exist during the boomer prime. We’re operating under a huge amount of societal pressure and debt, so much so that affording the platonic family lifestyle is no longer practical in some cases. Instead of looking at the issues and working to fix them, members of older generations have berated us to the point that we’re starting to believe them!

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Studies show that members of Gen Y have very little faith in their peers and themselves, and it’s related to the amount of pressure we’re put under to succeed in a way that may no longer work for us. Why should we have to base our success on someone else’s equation for a happy life?

Why should we have to base our success on someone else’s equation for a happy life? Click To Tweet

As a generation, millennials are using technology and connecting to issues and people worldwide in a way that has never been possible before. We have learned to change with the world around us, and should be free to do so. Conforming to a plan that doesn’t necessarily fit our interests and goals is only going to hurt us in the long run. Author Cher Fuller states, “I don’t hate Millennials as people. I hate the Millennial name. I hate what it has done to create stereotypes around blossoming young adults who tend to think differently or approach their passions in a way you wouldn’t necessarily do.”

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We’re dealing with so much hate that it’s made us resentful towards a term that does nothing more than classify us by birth year. It’s not up to everyone else to determine the value of that name; it’s up to us, the members of Gen Y, to decide what it means.

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