T Nation

New Generation

I’m taking a Business Philosophy class right now and the first topic we discussed was the newer generation. My professor(white male in his 50’s) says that the new generation doesn’t seem to get fired up or care about anything. He say that in his day if there was something they disliked, then they would protest or do something about it. He says his generation made changes. He even said that a lot of us are like sheep. My view on this is that this is what every older generation says about the newer generation. I think he is under estimating young people, since we are the same people that his generation came from. I seem to hear this all the time about the newer generation. I’m not sure if he was talking about war or just political reform. I also don’t think this generation has had a lot to be fired up about. We have been in peace and no big wars. But I know that talking to my friends after 9/11, that a lot of them would defintely go to war if it got bad or if the country needed us, including me. Any thoughts?

Baaaaaaaaa. I’ll bet that gets Demo Dick aroused! He likes sheep. BTW, that “professor” is an idiot.

I tell you what. I have to agree with your Prof. Listen to what you just said toward the end of your post: “don’t think this generation had alot to be fired up about” - to which I say …WHAT? Just because it ain’t a big war, doesn’t mean it ain’t worth fighting for. Or not “front page” news…You don’t think we need some sort of political reform now?

I work in a University - and this is what I see EVERYDAY: students who want just about everything done for them for nothing. Students who don't understand the concept of "budget shortfalls" affecting the quality of their education. I'd say THAT'S worth fighting for. I also see issues that have to do with local communities - development, community police, etc.

The only difference between now and when your Prof was your age: back then, they believed in "changing the world" by going out to protest. NOW, it's best to start at the grass-roots level - by involvement in local, small town politics or, as I mentioned above, community organizations. But, I wonder, how many of the students I see lazing around in the student lounge, after hearing in my office "I don't have time..." or "I'm SO busy..", would do this: become involved.

Sorry, if I sound "bitter". I have student workers that I manage in the office and the one that I rely on Tuesdays/Thursdays has called in "sick" AGAIN for the fourth time this month. Yes, once a week, he calls in sick - even though he has only ONE class this term. Reason? He needed "more sleep." Hey, I KNOW he doesn't represent the entire college student population - but I'm just really, really, bugged to the extreme NOW.

It is the typical good ole days speech. The belief that life was so much better before. It is of course not true. Your prof is just generalizing an enire generation of people. I’m surprised a person at the university level would do this. People say this kind of thing all the time. Just like the youth out of control bs. Every generation of parents will say how out of control kids are now. Or the old “world going to hell in a handbasket” statement. People have been saying these things since the beginning of time.

TO Patricia: I didn’t mean to sound like I don’t care or that there isn’t anything worth fighting for. But my professor is kind of judging my generation, when we haven’t even had a chance to live. Where I live in New Orleans, the school system is terrible and the politics is really crooked. Well I’m only 22, so what do I have do with those problems that already exist. I know it is my generation’s responsibility to clean it up, but my professor is talking great about his generation is when all of these problems were created by them and the generations before them. That is all I am trying to say.

Comparing generations as to which is better or worse is pointless. Generations are the way they are and act the way they do because of the experiences that they have gone through. Each generation has a completely different set of circumstances that is unique to that generation. That in essence is why we separate age groups and call them generations.

That’s the biggest load of bullshit I’ve ever heard. Today’s world is totally INSANE compared to what it was only 20 years ago. (that’s what I hear from my rowing coach anyway but he’s only 39) I work with a guy who got a psych degree a few years ago, took some time off & he’s back now getting a teaching certificate & he says school is way more brutal & hardass-ish now than it was when he was there only a few years ago. As usual, the prof is full of it, don’t listen to another word he says. My dad’s dad was a merchant marine in England (whose chances of dying were worse than a soldier’s-something like one out of 50 died) in WWII & I’d do the same if the free world needed me. I’m also not surprised that a prof underestimates the young people at the U, that’s just typical.

I have to agree with Patricia. I remember when I was in school people bitched all the time about politics, but when you asked them if they voted they were ‘too busy’. Everyone seems to have time to run their mouth, but they are just ‘too busy’ to actually do anything but bitch. Sure, I complained too, but I was also in a group that did over 1000 hours of community service a semester - because I wanted to make some sort of difference.

I think what the professor was getting at is the current generation of college age people is more liekly to spend 20 hours a week infront of the TV, Sega or hanging out than they are to actually DO something about things they don't like.

Amen, Patricia. I go to University, and you’re absolutely right. Everyone wants something for nothing.

Come on, University is “more hardass?” That’s a load of bull. Do you realize that there was almost no curving done pre-Vietnam? That’s right, our modern university system is a product of a) relaxed educational standards during vietnam so that students wouldn’t have to go to war, and b) relaxed standards after vietnam, because everyone whined that things were too tough, and needed to be relaxed for those “less fortunate.” College is stressful, I know I bitch about it all the time. But let’s keep things in perspective. You have all your meals and bills taken care of. All you have to do is go to class and study. Cripes.

Your professor is generalizing> He views the students he see before him and draws his conclusions. You are contributing to that conclusion. What “fires” you up? What is important to you? Me. I am donating my time to write my home town’s emergency operations plan and on Monday I drove the Grand Marshal in the parade. Is there something bigger than you, that you are willing to be part of?

What do you mean you have all your meals and bills payed for at university?? I had to pay for my own school and my own food.

Wow, sounds like the professor is a major butt plug. He was probably one of those guys who chanted, “Don’t trust anyone over 30,” at least until he reached his 30th birthday. Now he’s just following his programming. Then on the other hand, why didn’t you raise your hand and say he’s full of crap? When I went to university, just a few years ago, I noticed that 99% of students sucked professor weenie and would instantly modify their opinions to whatever was held by their favorite professor. I laughed when the professors got so frustrated because they were trying to get the students to think for themselves, and instead the students just repeated the professor’s most memorable statement like a mantra, imagining that they were thinking for themselves. LOL!

Your prof is a fool. When you hear sweeping generalizations like this, you are listening to a very lazy thinker. What does “new generation” mean anyway? Those who are now 15 - 25? 18-32? Just those he sees in college? How many people has he really talked to about this? Do you think he has any basis at all for his statement? I love meeting a-holes like this in person. Nothing like picking apart a dickhead in public. Oh, BTW, I hear that military retention is up nearly 3-fold since 9/11. Sounds like some young people care about something to me.

I don’t know how it is in the USA, but my U is a friggin sweatshop. Something for nothing? more like nothing for something. I’ve wasted so much time & money jumping through hoops to get my piece of paper. Where else could you go where you pay $60 for a library book that’s a day overdue? They do that just because they can say “if you don’t ______, you can’t a)register for the next term or b) graduate” It’s one power trip after the other. I don’t think anybody knows how rough it is. I don’t know of any prof in my department who scales more than 2% on tests. This world is way different from the world that silly prof is talking about, he’s been in school for too long to understand.

And yet still, you’re only talking about life stress, and not contribution to a cause (or the difficulty of it). In the end, though, that’s just another excuse. The protestors of the 60s wouldn’t have stopped protesting because “classes are hard.”

exactly…they would only stop protesting if it wouldn’t get them laid any more…

Your prof’s view is very typical of an academic who’s lived his life with tenured security in a fairy tale land. While I agree with Patricia that today’s university kids are coddled and apathetic, comparing the university atmosphere of the 60’s to the present is nonsense. In today’s world a university campus is so handcuffed by politically correct rules and regulation that free speech is next to impossible to express. At the university I coach football at, you may not wish someone a “merry christmas” at christmas time. First time you are caught you are reprimanded. The second time suspended and the third fired. I’m not fucking kidding. You may wish someone “happy holidays” if you like. No x-mas trees are allowed on campus either, as they are a christian symbol (apparently) and are offensive to non christians. Political correctness has begun to create a system of tyranny of the minority and no where is it more apparent than on university campuses. If I was a university student today ( graduated in 92) I would keep my mouth shut and look at the ground while walking campus too. The truth of the matter is, unless you are a visible minority or a homosexual, you have no say. And anything you do say may be interpreted as sexist, racist or worse, harrassment. Yes there are many issues worth speaking out about (animal rights, real racial issues, third world debt relief, ect.) but who the hell wants to take the chance of getting raked over the coals for simply speaking his/her mind. I once had a female prof say in class that " the overwhelming majority of campus rapes are perpetrated by male athletes". The half dozen male athletes in the class complained to the dean of arts and all wrote letters to the university president. She was told to make an apology in class which she did in a very insincere and sarcastic manner. Could you imagine what would have happened if it had of been a male prof making a similar comment about female athletes. Maybe something like, the overwhelming majoritiy of female athletes are dikes. You bet your ass he would get fired for such a ridiculous genralization. Anyhow sorry for the long rant. Had to get it off my chest.

The average age of people in my class is anywhere from 21-40, so I don’t know how he can make generalizations. Elegua that makes me laugh because a few people were just repeating the professors thoughts on why this generation doesn’t care as much. Me and a few people in class did challenge him on that though. I think he was just trying to get a rise out of us and make us think. I hope he doesn’t think like that.

Aaahhhh…university memories :slight_smile: I went to UCSD, which really didn’t have that many athletes. Here we had at the time perhaps the best athletic training facilities on the west coast, and only about 3% of people knew we had ANY sports teams. My last year there, they were even debating whether or not to make UCSD a partial Division II school, and there were all sorts of protests, including from professors, that sports would take away from UCSD’s academic reputation…yeah, right, like sports have diminished UC Berkeley’s reputation.

So, of course, on my campus, male athletes couldn’t be accused of the majority of sexual assaults. There, the primary guilty parties were Bio-chemists and their Computer Science major buddies who just figured out how to make another GHB analogue out of circuit board cleanser…

I think a lot of people from the boomer generation think we are lazy conformists. They often think because they were joint smoking hippies in the 60’s they are solely responsible for anything good since.