If you were born between 1980 and 2000, guess what? You’re a Millennial.
And the world hates you.
OK, that may be a tad overdramatic. But then again . . .
“We can all agree that Millennials are the worst,” began a 2014 story on the news website The Atlantic.
Another article of a similar flavour denounced Millennials as “the worst workers in the history of the world”, with several quotes provided of employers damning the attitude and antics of “Generation Me”.
Lifestyle expert Martha Stuart even sounded off against the current generation of youth and young adults last year, saying “they don’t know anything” and calling them lazy.
Add entitled, shallow, and self and selfie-obsessed to the growing list of criticisms.
At this point in this article you’re probably expecting us to defend Millennials. And there’d be reasons to. Research has shown that the young adults of today are extremely hard workers, arguably even more than in previous generations. They are also earnest, optimistic, entrepreneurial, and, as one university professor declared, could ultimately save us all.
But we’ll leave it at that. After all, even though Millennials have been shown to have a high opinion of themselves, they’re also not above throwing stones.
“Millennials don’t suck, you’re just old and hate change,” wrote Ryan McCreadylast year in a staunch defence of his generation.
“If I hear one more middle-aged person tell me how good I have it because I was born in the ‘90s, I’m going to literally barf so hard I shoot backwards across the room,” began a blogger on The Huffington Post.
And childish. On both sides, mind you, as sweepingly labelling an entire generation as “lazy” and “the worst” really isn’t doing anybody any good.
It’s also getting boring, as criticism of the forthcoming generation is an age old sentiment.
*Kenneth John Freeman wrote in 1907, “The children now love luxury. They have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise.”
This verbal back-and-forth is also a tremendous distraction for what Baby Boomers, Generation Xers and Millennials should really be doing: working together. [pullquote]
To those aged 40+, the youth and young adults of today are nothing but the product of your generation, and they need your help to grow and make their mark on this crazy, chaotic, sinful world.
To the Millennials, there is a wealth of wisdom and knowledge to be found in those who have gone before you. Look for them and learn from them.
So enough of “lazy”, and put away the counterattacks. To keep this war of words going between generations would be, quite frankly, stupid. Superfluous. Simply the worst.
* Most people mistakenly attribute this quote to Socrates.