Talking ‘Bout “meh” Generation
I got a haircut at a hip clip joint while out of town. The place is decked out in rock paraphernalia from the hazy days of the 60s, proto punkers like New York Dolls from the 1970s and young Ozzy Osborne when he was still biting heads off of bats on stage (before he starred on a family reality TV show or sold out his franchise to Sirius XM).
The retro barber shop displayed more recent band posters like the Foo Fighters trying to feign “rebel”. But the modern bands all seem like prepackaged ennui rather than innovators or social dissidents.
I am a pretty mild mannered guy, but I have an inner rebel. Part of me roots for the brave loner who disrupts the status quo. But now everyone poses to be a rebel . But, if everyone is counter cultural, isn’t “rebellion” the status quo? If everyone is out to shock, does anything have shock value? (No).
The young are supposed to be energetic, vivacious and full of unbridled hope (or rage). Today’s youth culture has a bad case of “meh”. Nothing shocks, impresses or lasts. Opinions are based on feels. And feels tend to be uber sensitive and peevish.
Blame a lackluster economy, diminished career prospects, the breakdown of family life, absence of faith and moral standards or over-indulgence with omnipresent media. There’s plenty of blame to go around.
Identifying and lamenting the problem doesn’t get us far. How do we fight the malaise? Cancer tends not to go away on its own without treatment. Those of us who love life need to share that joi de vivre with others, particularly the young. We have to model life affirming behaviors and engage the culture. Giving up on this generation will have repercussions. Character and culture is upstream of politics. Fighting cultural rot is more important than stumping for votes for any political candidate.
Reality doesn’t bite. But today’s youth culture does. We need to cultivate that resilient, independent streak that emboldens rebels to question authority and strike out on their own path. There’s plenty wrong with the dominant youth culture today. It will take fearless rebels from in among millennials and Generation Z to fight the “mehs”.
Photo Credit: Creatista – 123rf.com
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