Friday, October 29, 2010

Fantastic Future Friday: Passing the torch

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As the midterm election nears the news is getting ugly, as Republican supporters have been beating up anyone who disagrees with them. That’s not a slam against the GOP just facts. It is easy to see why this election season has Democrats and Republicans so worked up, the other side is clearly insane.

On social issues it has been pointed out that the country is torn right now between the old and young. On the question of granting equal rights to gays 65% of those over 55 think that means the end of civilization, while 65% of those under 35 think, “Well duh, of course they should have equal rights.” On most other social issues the break down is the same.

As far as the generation in-between, Generation X, nobody has ever cared what we think and they are not going to start now.

The Millennials, those under 35 all schooled up and nowhere to work, face a very different world than that of the baby boomers. The boomers were born in the last century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of their heritage, and witnessed the slow undoing of the human rights to which this nation has always been committed. Theirs was a time of unity, of the ultimate us vs. them mentality. When civic pride consisted of loyalty to the group you belonged to.

The Millennials born near the end of the last century entered a world where anyone was a phone call away, next door or across the country it didn’t matter, they were disciplined by seeing the old career paths being swept away by automation and outsourcing, they grew up interacting with children of different cultures and heritages, in culturally diverse schools and online, they were able to google the opinions of people who thought different from them.

Theirs is a time of diversity. Where being different isn’t evil, where working together is the norm and not a sign of weakness, where different opinions aren’t just allowed they are encouraged.

They have watched as the American middle class was destroyed by run away capitalism, but have learned the lesson that full out communism is not the answer and want a different path.

They are inheriting a world with problems that are beyond even the most powerful nation to fix on its own, Climate Change, scarcity of resources, pollution killing the oceans, new forms of disease and know that just being Nationalistic and waving the American flag isn’t going to solve the problem.

So while the baby boomers form their teaparties and try to hold ground as this new generation of Americans take control, I am happy to see the torch being passed.

This new generation might be the first to see themselves as humans first and Americans second and instead of seeing a struggle between nations, they might see the struggle against all of mankind’s common enemies, poverty, climate change, disease, tyranny and even war itself.

With a new generation that embraces differences in people, I have confidence that they will work together to solve these problem in a way that will respect the worth and dignity of every human being. That will lead to a fantastic future.

By Darrell B. Nelson author of Invasive Thoughts

1 comment:

Stephanie Barr said...

Lord (or Google), I hope you're right. I don't expect it in THIS election, however.