… it amazes me at what a difference a single decade can make; I am referring to age differences. There exists a dramatic discongruity from the 20-somethings of today compared to the 20-somethings of ten years ago. Historically, most 20-somethings aren’t known for their decision making skills and maturity but this generation of 20-somethings seems more profoundly stupid than the generations preceding them. They are a special kind of stupid that we’ve never encountered before.
Take appearance as one example; college-aged-me had a mohawk and played in an all girl punk band. College-aged-me was stupid, sure, yet still had facilities enough to realize that in the long run punk band was not going to pay my bills. Punk band was not a legitimate career. College-aged-punk-band-riot-grrl-me was also intelligent enough to realize tattoos are permanent and had the foresight to understand one day decorum would dictate having tattoos after a certain age looks trashy. So college-aged-me never got full sleeves or a tramp stamp.
I was never of that, seemingly now prevalent, mind set that what I did now would not later have direct affects on my future. I was also grounded in reality enough to known, despite what the feeling based education systems said, I can not grow up to be whatever I want to be. I suffered under no delusions that I was extraordinarily talented or special enough to be exempt from my adult responsibilities.
In as little as ten years, our society has managed to destroy a substantial number of the next generation of college-aged youth by valuing self esteem over hard work and education. So now the majority of 20-somethings of today feel they are more special than the rest of the world and too good for menial work and cube dwelling jobs. Many believe they are uniquely wonderful individuals and the world needs to realize this and treat them accordingly. No wonder they are squatting on Wall Street all pissed and disgruntled. The rest of the world is too busy taking care of their families and adult responsibilities to really give a crap.
Normally I wouldn’t be so concerned. In the past, youth eventually grow up and gain life experiences. Their passion is tamed with the wisdom gained over the course of adulthood. In essence, they grow up.
However, the 20-somethings of today are in a unique position not experienced by previous youths. Social vacuums. Children today have technology that caters to their specific preferences, reinforcing narcissism. They surround themselves with news, media, and like minded individuals that stunts maturity. They are not challenged by different views and exposed to contradictory thinking. They do not evolve.
You can see proof of this in the diminishing presence of adults. We grow old and reach adulthood as evident by the number of candles on our cake but there are fewer and fewer Adults. Grown men and women dress and behave like teenagers and still expect to be cared for by their parents.
20-something me, ten years ago, had friends getting married and starting families. All were working professionals. Many purchased their first homes… all social markers of adulthood. 20-somethings today sneer at the institution of marriage as repressive and having children as burdensome. They have hit no identifying social milestones to indicate they are even thinking about crossing the threshold into adulthood. They have zero ambition.
I don’t have a solution, other than to remark how drastically different young adults are today in comparison to a meager decade ago. I was just stunned how quickly things declined. Then again, it is highly possible I only now notice these generational differences because I was too self centered ten years ago to notice the rest of the world.