Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Conversations with the Future -- 1

Millennials have officially overtaken Baby Boomers as America's largest living generation. What a relief. Maybe there is still time to salvage America. My generation had it all. We were too young for Viet Nam and too old for the Gulf Wars. We had cheap health insurance, safe housing, fully funded Social Security, and 70s rock music. Education was so affordable that "working your way through college" meant getting a part time minimum wage job and graduating debt free. So did we climb up on the shoulders of these giant advantages and make the world a better place? Oh, heavens no. We built big houses, filled them with trinkets, and sat around in our big hair staring at TV all day and night. Our response to lingering Civil Rights issues was flight to the suburbs or if our town was too small to have suburbs then we founded small Christian academies for all our educational needs. We said "separate, but equal" like we meant it. We turned church into belief clubs that promised insurance against unpleasant eternal consequences. Somehow this all seemed to make sense at the time, then one day our millennial children looked at us and cried bullshit. We were stunned. They said that black, brown, and mixed people were people. They said that life would go on if gay people married the ones they loved. They snapped a picture of our heirlooms with their cell phones and said no thanks when we tried to pass down our trinkets. They moved into tiny houses. And they left church in droves.

I think they may be on to something.

I'm fortunate to spend much of my time on a college campus. It's like watching the future walk around with a backpack and an energy drink. Hopefully my sphere of influence isn't completely eclipsed, but it's their turn. And I'm glad. I see good things ahead. Lord knows we set the bar awfully low, but they don't even seem to be especially angry about it. They have some interesting things to say, and I'm going to listen.


  1. If this is the only entry you post this year, I am glad it is this one. I, for one, am happy to be raising someone who is not afraid to call bullshit. I too like the way our future looks. I just hope we are smart enough to get out of their way.

    1. Me too. Looking around it's questionable that we have enough sense to get out of the rain much less out of their way. They'll figure it out.