More people are talking about generations now than ever before. For this reason I talk about it a lot with my parents, who showed confusion to when distinguishing the generations. Many people can’t seem to agree when the Millennial Generation ends, but my parents strongly agree that it was before 1999, because they couldn’t see my 19-year-old brother as a lazy Millennial like the media portrays them. I couldn’t help to think why Millennials are experiencing so much hate recently, but it turns out, they are not alone.
For as long as there have been different ages, there has been anger between the old and young. Both believe that the way they live is the right way. This usually involves the older generation hating the inventions of the younger. Even Socrates felt this hate towards the new trend, the written word. Socrates stated, “This discovery of yours will create forgetfulness in the learners’ souls, because they will not use their memories; they will trust to the external written characters and not remember of themselves.” That’s right, Socrates thought writing would make the future generations forgetful and idiotic.
That was centuries ago, and this generational anger still persists in modern times. An article from the New York Times in 1904 complained about the new invention sweeping the nation, telephones. The article complains that people are on the phone so much that their right ears were becoming deaf from lack of use.
During the same decade another invention, the automobile, came under fire. Many people hated this new invention, calling them “speed demons” and “death cars.” Many cities tried to get them off the streets through legislative action, believing the streets belonged to the people and horse buggies, not the new metal contraptions.
That was over 100 years ago, what hate did the currently ever-angry Baby Boomers get? Baby Boomers in their time got a lot of hate about two things: their music and their political views. Many people believed that rock and roll music led to drug use. An article from the New York Times was published on this theory. The story quotes a man saying how drug-influenced music is “the real religion of young people today.”
In addition, though they seem more fragile than the average Millennial, many Baby Boomers were civil right activists for their time. They were born during the height of the civil rights movement and many took action during this time, receiving much backlash from generations before.
Older generations have always showed hate towards the younger generations. More people are aware of it now with social media bringing hateful articles to light, but it has always been here. Maybe people just get more grumpy as they get older. However, it is more likely that these people are just afraid that the world is changing and that they will be left behind, and they are trying their best to avoid that.