Sunday, May 06, 2007

Millenials In The New Millenium

Do Echo Boomers Have The Makings Of A Great Generation?
By Mark Moran

The 60 Minutes report on Echo Boomers was disturbing to say the least. What I gathered from the story is that the Echo Boomer’s are being defined as product consuming, needy conformists whose possibility of causing change collectively is slim. I would love to call the report false or sensationalized, but as a member of the Echo Boomer generation it’s hard for me to ignore mine and my peers actions.

I thought 60 Minutes made a valid and apt point when they mentioned how this generation has been raised in controlled environments with watchful parents guiding and validating their every move. Kids don’t go out in the neighborhood to play anymore with the assumption of their safety from parents. Now, a child’s life and, well, childhood is micromanaged in the name of safety. Media has a lot to do with the creation of an over-pampered generation.

Almost nightly parents see reports of kidnapping and child molestation. The media overtly sends a message to parents that their kids may be next. In response, parents bubble-wrap their kids in an attempt to keep them from making mistakes and experiencing consequences. Learning through trial and error seems to be outdated for American youth.

It’s no surprise that when these children grow into adulthood they are constantly looking for the next socially accepted fix. The pampered, validated childhoods they experienced lead them to believe that these objects will make them happy. Since hide and seek was replaced with Playstation, older Echo Boomers replace hard work with a sense of entitlement.

Not only is our generation’s label of pampered consumers troublesome, the label of conformist is even scarier. Now more than ever we need the youth to evoke change in our government and society. It seems that my generation is too busy “team playing” and being “consumers” to start a revolution. One of the sources in the report called Baby Boomers egocentric for thinking they could change the world. If that’s what being egocentric is, then we need some individuality stat.

When we went to war with Iraq, I wondered why weren’t people my age raising hell in the streets. From what I gather from talking and befriending people my age, a lot of us are against the war. To be honest, a lot of us against many things are government is doing. Why aren’t we as confident that we can change the world as the baby boomers? Is it because we have had so many things spoon-fed to us that we expect the same with social change?

I personally would like to believe that I don’t fall into the category of a typical Echo Boomer, but then again I feel entitled to some degree. However, I also want change. I want to work for what I get, and most of all I believe that my generation can change the world. I don’t want my generation’s legacy to be that of a materialistic conforming pre-Madonna. The World War II generation has been labeled the greatest generation, why can’t we be the greatest generation II?

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