Quoting Quiverfull: Navel Gazing Teens?

by Scott Brown of The Marriage Blog and Ladies Against FeminismThe Problem With 17 Year-Olds Who Hang Around 17 Year-Olds

Time Magazine recently came out with an article,“The New Greatest Generation”, contending that the idea of seventeen year olds hanging out with seventeen-year olds is a bad idea.

This is why, in every place we went on our tour to Australia and New Zealand, we gave the messages attacking the notions of youth culture and entertainment. We called our messages, “Preparing Boys for Battle and Girls for Dominion,” particularly in view of the fact that, worldwide, youth are caught in a culture of play and non-achievement…their main achievement is to adore themselves. Love for God has been replaced by love of entertainment. When they move into young adulthood, love for children has been replaced with love of toys. We said over and over again, “We were meant to work with tools not play with toys… This message is needed all over the world as the global youth scene is being pickled in its narcissism. We pleaded with our hearers to stop playing games; stop being entertained; stop hanging out; stop adoring yourself and get to work doing something that has meaning. The society at large is no help at all… being content to put young people in educational institutions where they sit at desks for 18 years and have nothing to show for it except a diploma. It should take our breath away.

Even Time Magazine has recognized this reality that exists in the Millinial generation which consists of those born between 1980 and 2000.

They Are a Huge Population Block

“At 80 million strong, they are the biggest age grouping in American history.”

Self Obsessed

“Millennials are a generation mostly of teens and 20-somethings known for constantly holding up cameras, taking pictures of themselves and posting them online.”

Narcissistic and Lazy

This kind of lifestyle has its consequences, “They are narcissistic, overconfident, entitled and lazy.”

Their frankness regarding the scope of the problem is stated in this way, “Their self-centeredness could bring about the end of civilization as we know it…” The incidence of narcissistic personality disorder is nearly three times as high for people in their 20s as for the generation that’s now 65 or older, according to the National Institute of Health; 58% more college students scored higher on a narcissism scale in 2009 than in 1982. Millennials got so many participation trophies growing up that a recent study showed that 40% believe they should be promoted every two years, regardless of performance.”

They Think They Are Great

“They’re so convinced of their own greatness that the National Study of Youth and Religion found the guiding morality of 60% of millennials in any situation is that they’ll just be able to feel what is right.”

“People are inflating themselves like balloons on Facebook,” says W. Keith Campbell, a psychology professor at the University of Georgia who has written three books about generational increases in narcissism (including When You Love a Man Who Loves Himself).”

“Millennials grew up watching reality-TV shows, most of which are basically documentaries about narcissists.”

Marrying Late – Maturing Late

“The median age for an American woman’s first marriage went from 20.6 in 967 to 26.9 in 2011.”

Anti-Intellectual, Anti-Historical and Anti-Eloquence

“The idea of the teenager started in the 1920s; in 1910, only a tiny percentage of kids went to high school, so most people’s social interactions were with adults in their family or in the workplace. Now that cell phones allow kids to socialize at every hour–they’re living under the constant influence of their friends. “Peer pressure is anti-intellectual. It is anti-historical. It is anti-eloquence,” says Mark Bauerlein, an English professor at Emory, who wrote The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupifies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future… Never before in history have people been able to grow up and reach age 23 so dominated by peers. To develop intellectually you’ve got to relate to older people, older things: 17-year-olds never grow up if they’re just hanging around other 17-year-olds.”

A Radical Departure from the Past

“For almost all of human history, almost everyone was a small-scale farmer. And then people were farmers and factory workers. Nobody gets very much fulfillment from either of those things,” says Jeffrey Arnett, a psychology professor at Clark University, who invented the phrase emerging adulthood…

Comments open below


QUOTING QUIVERFULL is a regular feature of NLQ – we present the actual words of noted Quiverfull leaders and ask our readers: What do you think? Agree? Disagree? This is the place to state your opinion. Please, let’s keep it respectful – but at the same time, we encourage readers to examine the ideas of Quiverfull honestly and thoughtfully.

NLQ Recommended Reading …

Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment‘ by Janet Heimlich

Quivering Daughters‘ by Hillary McFarland

Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement‘ by Kathryn Joyce


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  • Baby_Raptor

    Please. Every generation bemoans the horrors of the one after it. Nothing this man is saying now wasn’t said about me by the generation ahead of mine.

    (At least at 27, I presume I’m not in this generation. I never did understand exactly how generations were ‘mapped out’ so to speak.)

  • Lolly

    Yes, at least come up with something more original than the “kids these days” excuse for sowing FUD*. Also, it seems to me that the evangelical church is bleeding kids, so by all means, attack kids for their use of technology and exploring ways to fit into the society you helped create for them. Definitely tell them that everything they do is terrible, and they’re awful people and their parents are horrible for raising them. Tell the girls they have to be forced into the breeder housekeeper paradigm because of your own fears of whatever it is you fear they’re doing, like thinking, and the boys have to go fight your Jesus battles for you. By all means, proceed. It’s a real winner.

    * FUD. A marketing ploy meaning Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt, such as the commercials intended to make you feel like a terrible failed parent unless you purchase X brand of anti bacterial poison, or the inside of your dishwasher doesn’t sparkle so your life must be in utter chaos. And after all, isn’t this all a marketing ploy?

  • persephone

    That Time article was a huge stinking pile of BS. No consideration was given to the background, context, or upbringing of these kids.

    These kids are looking at a world in turmoil, a government that seems hell bent on screwing them at every turn, no job security, etc. Of course, they seem self-centered. Oh, and yeah, they’re seventeen. That’s normal for seventeen.

  • persephone

    I read Little Women and was startled at the time to read exactly the same sentiments expressed there.

  • Baby_Raptor

    Blaming them for not adhering to the plan is easier than attempting to find a resolution. That means work, and maybe having to admit that you’re wrong!

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    I remember reading a transcription of a 15th century monk who said the same things.

    That generation he and Time are talking about has some of the greatest challenges to face than any other recent generation but I feel most confident they’ll rise to the occasion, like every generation does when confronted with change. Some of the best and brightest, most creative people are in this rising generation.

  • Kristine McGowen

    “Our youth now love luxury. They have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for their elders and love chatter in place of exercise; they no longer rise when elders enter the room; they contradict their parents, chatter before company; gobble up their food and tyrannize their teachers.” — Socrates. I always think of this quote when I look at teenagers and despair. The thing is, most of them eventually grow out of it and become decent people, just like my generation and all the others going back to the beginning of time.

  • Trollface McGee

    Oh those kids today. With their rock and their roll music and their facebooks and balloons.

    I love people who use words like “anti-intellectual, anti-historical,” followed by…..
    “For almost all of human history, almost everyone was a small-scale farmer. And then people were farmers and factory workers.”

    And for almost all of human history, we didn’t have effective medicine, tons and tons of wars, slavery, famine, pollution. A 17 year old was much more mature in those times because s/he’d likely be dead by 40 if not before. They married young and had a lot of kids because birth control sucked and because most of the kids they did have wouldn’t live to see their 5th birthday. Most of them also happened to be illiterate and uneducated beyond learning their family’s trade. Yep, the Good Old Days.

    Actually back then, 17 year olds were much more likely to hang out with other 17 year olds because 15-30 was the range of ages where more people were likely to remain alive.

  • Lolly

    Other times in history when technology was thought to be a bad influence, and lead to teh corruptionz of our impressionable youts was .. ok, ready? The microphone. Yes, because it led degenerates like Bing Crosby to croon intimately into the microphone instead of having to belt out a tune audible in the back rows. All that evil technology ensured that the crooning was listened to by teenage girls, you know the ones who grew up into Rosie the Riveters and mothering the baby boomers, those lazy navel gazing narcissists. And of course, religious leaders at that time just couldn’t help themselves, they just had to tap into that “trouble in River City” mentality. Wrong again, cardinal.

  • Petticoat Philosopher

    lol, nice “Music Man” reference! 😛

  • Petticoat Philosopher

    I’m 27 too. I’m afraid we do count, although I have a hard time considering myself to be in the same generation as teenagers now. Technology has advanced so much in the past 10 years, we didn’t have a lot of things that kids now take for granted. *clutches pearls*

    And so that’s what they’re freaking out about, eh? At the turn of the 20th century (when the concept of adolescence actually began, as well as the advent of youth culture), it was dating and dance halls. In the 20s it was jazz and cars. Then it was rock ‘n’ roll, then a different kind of rock ‘n’ roll (heavens!), then MTV and rap music and now I guess it’s ZOMG FACEBOOK AND SMART PHONES! Can’t people even even hear themselves?

    As a bona fide Millenial, let me put my anti-eloquence on display and tell this guy to go to hell. I am so tired of hearing all this BS about how we got told we’re special all the time, and we got “participation trophies,” and now we think the world owes us something. Give me a break! Most of the people I know my age are in a constant state of anxiety about being able to make it in this crumbling economy. We work while going to school, we work two jobs at once, sometimes only one of which is paid, since we are now expected to work for free for the privilege of building our resumes, we wonder how we’re ever going to pay down our debt or afford grad school, all while getting barked at by some columnist or commentator or another that we’re doing it wrong because we majored in this, not that, or we pursued this career path, not that one, or we should really be focusing on building our careers, no wait, we should really be focusing on marrying and starting families etc. etc. Oh yes, the world is our our oyster and it’s all just a big party for us!

    When I was 17 myself, I averaged about 4 hours of sleep a night, between trying to keep all my grades high in all the honors courses I was taking (that I was told I would absolutely need if I wanted to get into a “good college” and not ruin my whole life, which was the unspoken implication), studying for my SATs, fitting in as many extracurricular activities as possible, volunteering in the community, babysitting, and working a paid job.

    And I was one of the lucky ones, a middle-class kid with a stable two-parent, two-income household who didn’t need to worry that I might not actually be able to go to college at all, like many kids had to then and even more do now. The kids I’ve worked with as a youth worker lose sleep over far greater trials–taking care of sick parents as best they can, because their families have no health insurance, working just to help their families make ends meet (which I suppose this jerk would approve of, since the message of the last passage seems to be “hey, remember the good old days of factory child labor? Wasn’t much fun but it sure built character!”), helping to raise their siblings or nieces and nephews, wondering if they’ll ever find a way out. Life is not exactly all about “entertainment.” There are enormous pressures of varying degrees on kids and young adults of pretty much every socioeconomic level now and their lives are hardly about play, play play–not even the lucky ones.

    So if they want to blow off some steam and post some goofy pictures of themselves with their friends on facebook, just step the hell off, mmmkay?

    I am absolutely disgusted by the evident contempt and downright hatred for young people on display in this piece, as well as by the blatant ignorance of what the lives of teens and young adults are really like. Ugh!

  • Raising girls for dominion…. Is that as creepy as it sounds to me?

  • aim2misbehave

    Nope, nope, nope, nope… I think they mean “almost all of recorded history” because there’s quite a few thousand years of human history (or more, depending on where you draw the line of “human”) where people were more or less nomadic. Heck, even up to today, there are indigenous groups that don’t really farm, per se, such as the Inuit in the north, and some groups of Pacific islanders who have very limited land available.

    And that’s not to count civilizations that had large cities and armies, which allowed for significant numbers of people to live as soldiers, or artisans, and of course the many more people who were servants or slaves to farmers and such. (And, proportionally, that covers more of human history if you’re viewing it from a young-earth creationist perspective)

  • gimpi1

    I remember reading (ha) that literacy was thought to be a bad thing, since it would weaken people’s memories. People wouldn’t put in the long hours memorizing sagas and such if they could just write them down and read them back. Oh Noes!

    Pretty much every new technology or skill has been viewed with horror by the older generation.

    I like the Music Man reference, too!