The other night I was chatting with someone who was talking shite about the Millennial generation. “You do realize that we’re part of that generation, right?”, I asked. (The UN cites 1980 as the beginning of Gen Y/Melennial, and Neilson says 1977.) I was pre-pubescent for the height of grunge’s angst and got an email account along with my first locker code at the ripe age of twelve…I’m not a Gen X’er. Of course I did dress in 90’s clothes during the 90’s, and seeing a 17 year old of my supposed generation in a Nirvana sweatshirt produced by Urban Outifitters both confuses and upsets me. (Though I’m totally amped chokers are back.)
Anyways, writing about being on the cusp of a generation isn’t my point – I came to my computer annoyed about the eschewing of our nation’s up and comers.
The world is totally fucked right now. When facing cataclysmic disaster whilst living in a corporatocracy that offers shit for jobs, maybe posting a selfie on Facebook isn’t the craziest response. I think it’s just distraction until the current modes totally implode and it’s time to build something new. That’s what this generation will do, we will create a new way.
Gen X went along with what was, but with an eyeroll and an exaggerated sigh. The Babyboomer’s obsession with security has led to corruption and anything but the security that was intended. (Isn’t it ironic, don’t you think?) What Babyboomers recognized as “great opportunity” Gen X’ers saw, and still see, as a necessary evil. Their current frustration is shaking the outdated modes from the inside, and as Gen X steps into the top ranks of control (elder Gen X’s are now hitting 50) we will see a crumbling of what was.
Shit’s about to hit the fan, and I think Millennials are acutely aware of this fact. Why try to crab bucket onto a sinking ship? It’s not lazy disrespect, it’s foresight. Also, maybe this “me, me, me” attitude isn’t such a bad thing. Maybe it’s a sign of a generation not just going through the “who am I” phase, but actually looking for the answer. Perhaps self-actualization is the new, “what-ev-errr“.
Another thing people love to hate about Millennials is that we think we’re so damned special and unique. If a society is held together by everyone fitting into the machine, special and unique is bad. Special and unique does not make for a good cog. However, when creating something entirely new, everyone needs to find their niche. If contributors know what they are good at, in their own special and unique way, they will be more efficient creators. A person who has found their voice is someone who can carry out a vision.
I’m excited about the future. I imagine a massive growth in businesses small in size but huge in socio-conscious awareness. These entrepreneurs will pay a living wage, knowing that it results in a society that can actually afford to buy things. I can’t wait to see the innovations that will halt and slowly reverse environmental damage. I’m thrilled to imagine what will be done with energy, in particular. I think Nikola Tesla will no longer be just a hero to nerds, but patron-saint of saving all of our asses.
Millennials won’t be the only ones creating all of this badass change, it will be everyone. However, the Millennial unwillingness to participate in the current crumbling load of crap is a big part of what’s instigating the changes. Nothing kills a bad idea better than ignoring it and thinking up something better.
“You never change things by fighting the existing reality.
To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”