We’ve got some serious generation gap (a phrase that probably should have died in the 1960s) in play these days. First, Emily on her fellow Millenials:
My generation isn’t particularly easy to please. We’re cynical assholes with a penchant for aggrandizement and an inability to recognize the difference between global citizenship and self-promotion (no, read that. It’s amazing). Which might be part of the reason that the first Millennial to rise to power on Earth is a sociopathic 28-year-old North Korean dictator with his father’s fashion sense and nuclear capabilities.
What the Boomers as a generation missed (there were, of course and thankfully, many honorable individual exceptions) was the core set of values that every generation must discover to make a successful transition to real adulthood: maturity. Collectively the Boomers continued to follow ideals they associated with youth and individualism: fulfillment and “creativity” rather than endurance and commitment. Boomer spouses dropped families because relationships with spouses or children or mortgage payments no longer “fulfilled” them; Boomer society tolerated the most selfish and immature behavior in its public and cultural leaders out of the classically youthful and immature belief that intolerance and hypocrisy are greater sins than the dereliction of duty. That the greatest and most effective political leader the Baby Boom produced was William Jefferson Clinton tells you all you need to know.
“Mea culpa,” said the narrator, admitting to having helped the Big He into the White House.
All we need now is a Gen X representative to denounce both upper and lower slices of the sandwich. Then again, obsessive media hand-wringing notwithstanding, I suspect none of this really qualifies as “news,” that inter-generational resentment likely has existed as long as man has had generations; there’s got to be a centenarian out there somewhere who’s still bitter because his grandparents were somehow complicit in the Panic of 1873.