‘Kids these days’

November 24, 2017   ·   0 Comments

By Avery Park

It’s a phrase some people might hear a lot, others maybe not as much – “Kids these days” – a generalization of a whole generation, under one stereotype.

As a teen born in 2000, I have heard this phrase more then I’d like to admit. “Kids theses days can’t take their eyes off their phones,” “kids these days don’t know what it’s like to work for anything, everything has been given to them.”

While some statements like this might be true, others I find completely offensive. There are people in this world who see one teenager or young adult do one thing wrong, and suddenly that’s how they see every single person in that age group.

There are two age groups I see being talked down to the most, the Gen Y (1977-1994) and Gen Z (1995-2012), which are the two youngest ‘calcifications’ of age. A lot of stereotypes are associated with these two generations, coming from the older generations, and I would like to give some perspective on this as a younger female in today’s world.

About a week ago, there was a presentation at my school to the co-op classes about our generation coming into the work force, and how things were changing so rapidly now compared to 20-plus years ago. They now have to prepare for the young adults who have grown up in a completely different world than what the generation before them had.

I was told in this presentation that millennial’s, mostly specific to younger people, didn’t want to work as hard and wouldn’t work a regular 9-to-5 steady job, like so many Gen X’s have. While it’s true that I wouldn’t want to sit at a desk for the rest of my life, when I find a job that I love to do, I will work my hardest to make sure I get the respect I deserve in that profession.

The reason younger people are looking for more than that 9-to-5 is because we want something more. We’ve seen our parents, guardians, grandparents, or any other adult that we have known, in that steady job, and some say they hate it. We hear about those dreams that never became reality for a lot of people.

We have seen this and all of the lives that have been manageable, steady, and to us, I’m sorry but that sounds boring. We want to live those dreams and we are fuelled by the passion that the generations before us have dimmed. Everyone in my school, and more specifically in my co-op class, recognizes that the world is changing, and we are very adaptable to that change.

The one thing that most people can’t comprehend is that our work ethic or reliance on technology is not something that can be blamed on us, the younger generations. We have grown up in a different, more technically advanced world that keeps updating and changing.

For those who say we rely on our phones too much, we were given those phones and told that they could do everything for us, but we didn’t make this technology. We didn’t ask for everything to be so accessible and easy. Our elders have created this world for us to grow up in. Younger people aren’t necessarily lazy, or lack work ethic, they just have different expectations from everyone older than them.

I know if someone told me to walk an hour each day over hills and through fields to get to school, only to do it all again to get home, I wouldn’t want to do it. Well, that was the reality for my Grandma, who grew up in the country with that being the closest schoolhouse.

For myself, it is five minutes for me to walk to school, and even less when I get driven by a parent or friend. That is just an example of how, over the years and through the generations, circumstances have changed. Those people living where my Grandma did would now have a bus to get them to school, making it more accessible for everyone.

The way I have chosen to look at this split of generations is that we have all taken shortcuts, taken the easy way out. If there is anyone currently wondering, what could the older generations have done? They didn’t have the technology to take the easy way. Fun fact, you don’t need a phone to help you make the easier choice. For one example, what is the easiest way to create energy? Fossil fuels. That is what we have been doing for many years, so why change it?

While some people may not believe that climate change or global warming is happening, younger people know it is, and that it will only get worse if we continue on the path we are on. I have seen so many initiatives created by younger people to help make our world cleaner and greener, and that is how we will treat the world when we are majority of the working class. When we are CEO’s and prime ministers, doctors and scientists, we will be left with the task of saving our world from the downfalls of climate change.

Yes, I know that we, the younger generations, have our faults, but so does every other generation that has ever lived. I would just like to explain, and make sure people understand, that you can’t put the blame on us, or anyone really. This is just how we were raised, and this is how we will run the world one day.

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