Tonawanda News

Opinion

December 1, 2013

DUVALL: Taking stock of the millennial generation

Tonawanda News — The holidays are upon us. The dead sprint to 2014 is on — and with it comes the obligatory taking of stock in another year, if only because over the next month we’re all forced to have an answer prepared for “how have you been?” while catching up with all the people you only see this time of year.

It’s also an opportunity to step back and take stock of the larger picture. As a thirty-something professional I take great interest in pondering the fate of my generation, the millennials.

We’re defined as those born after 1980. (I was born in 1982.) And an honest accounting would reveal things aren’t too great for people my age.

Still, looking around at my contemporaries I’m incredibly excited for what’s to come. 

First, let’s toss out the terrible “damn kids” argument every generation makes about the newest generation. Millennials are no more selfish, self-absorbed, naive or reckless than any other generation.

To the contrary, statistically speaking we’re the most educated generation in American history. We hold more college degrees by percentage than any other. And while the student loan debt associated with that is a major factor in our lives, we should focus first on what that means for society.

I find most people my age to be more open-minded and engaged than other generations. We read and write obsessively on the Internet. Sure, much of that reading and writing is what-I-had-for-breakfast social media drivel, but communication and engagement with the world writ large isn’t a problem for us.

Our commitment to technological advancement is driving a marketplace of ideas — and commodities — that has made the world a better place. Older generations might scoff at Twitter but it’s a force to be reckoned with in the new millennium. No medium before it so quickly toppled dictators in the history of mankind.

Text Only
Opinion
  • ADAMCZYK: The greatest luxury: peace, quiet It is not difficult, for anyone with the intent, to know more about you than you think they should. Every step of yours involving interactive technology can be molded into a picture of how you spend your time, money and thought.

    August 1, 2014

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On lines blurred, crossed and nonexistent It strikes me more and more how blurry the lines have gotten in all facets of our world, large and small.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tucker, Barbara.jpg TUCKER: Oh, the joys of Sound Off Never thought the words "Thank goodness for Sound Off" would ever be printed here.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • adamczyk, ed.jpg ADAMCZYK: And now for something completely different... Last weekend I attended a local movie theater (a plushy, posh experience; they design these places now to get you out of your living room and away from your home electronics) to watch the sun set on the British Empire.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • OUR VIEW: Arson suspect never deserved bail Two of the 11 fires reported on Fifth Avenue could have been prevented with some jurisprudence in evaluating whether the suspect, Michelle Johnston, deserved to be offered bail. Given the obvious nature of a repeat offender who was charged with nine felony arson counts, bail never should have been offered in this case.

    July 25, 2014

  • wallace, amy.jpg WALLACE: Too much information? Is there such a thing as TMI or too much information anymore? Some might say yes.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On reading and the lack thereof It was surprising to me a few weeks ago when a friend asked a group of us to estimate how many books we have each read over the last five years. The English teacher said 200 and he far and away led the pack. I was probably the median and my number was 20-25.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: A Con-Con would be a con game

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Conflict in Ukraine now a concern of global proportions It seems increasingly clear Ukrainian separatists, with the help from the Russian military, are responsible for the tragedy. They, of course, have denied it. They've also denied access to the crash site to international investigators seeking to recover the dead and determine what happened. That's not something the innocent party does.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADAMCZYK: Personal development, rendered in steel Accepting the premise that everyone needs to fill the same amount of time every day (24 hours, every day), some people use theirs rebuilding things, tangible things, and thus fulfill a few intangible goals.

    July 18, 2014