With a whole catalog of alt archetypes, it’s easier than ever to be insufficient. The top-down pressure system is gone, replaced by a turbulent field of peer friction in which every identity is always vulnerable. The 15-year-old girl who told me “peer pressure no longer exists” also made it very clear in no way did that result in the perfect adolescent paradigm defined by love and respect. “They’re all annoying,” she said. “I hate them for trying so hard to be part of the group. And I hate them for trying so hard to be different and special.”
It seems that the media hates kids these days. Except when it is defending them. Time magazine made the biggest anti-millennial splash by calling millennials “lazy, entitled narcissists” on their front cover. Time magazine, whose writers have no a sense of shame, irony, or access to the magazine’s archive, also called Generation X shiftless know-nothings entranced with the shallow-modern and eschewing the deep values of the generation before. Isn’t this old-media millennial-think-piece link-baiting just a way of trolling the olds in order to get them to spend their retirement money on dead-tree based ancient tech? Or do they have a point? Is every generation since Tom Brokaw crawled fully-formed from the womb a bunch of mewling, self-involved twerps?
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