Putting aside my views on guns and politics, I am objectively watching the Stoneman Douglas teens on Face the Nation, one day after huge global rallies they led for gun control. It is fascinating for many reasons.
Unless one has kids, one rarely sees a real high school kids speak unfiltered. We only see fake teens in movies or other scripted media formats. Real teen brains are not fully developed and they speak without frontal lobe filters. They are a politician’s worst nightmare. They blurt out such truths as, “Rick Scott is running for senate, so maybe that is why he signed the gun control legislation, to get the popular vote.”
This is also interesting for another reason. I cannot recall ever before in my life seeing young people in high school become socially conscious. Historically, only 20% of the 18-29 demographic bother to vote.
Ever since the end of WW2, generations of Western kids have become self-absorbed, pampered, brats until the age 18. They are young and impressionable. Therefore, social media advertising has long coveted this demographic of 18-29. Well, these kids know that and are using their desirability to have a voice. New technology is allowing them to form massive crowds. They are behaving more like adults, as teenagers did in the Great Depression after 1929.
This youth movement is just a new iteration of the 2011 Arab Spring. The ruling elite will have to scramble fast. The NRA, in this case, is losing badly.
Bigger than the gun issues, what I am also observing is what might possibly be coined as the first new identifiable generation after the millennials. They do not have a name yet. I will call them SocGen, short for Social Media Generation.
These “SocGen’s” seem to be avoiding the mistakes of the millennials. I see no tattoos or body piercings on them. They have nice haircuts. I see no glorification of marijuana.
I could regret saying this as one of my most naïve comments, but they could be a wholesome generation? History swings back and forth and repeats itself. Maybe these kids are like my generation, right after Reagan in the 80’s, avoiding the mistakes of hippies and the disco generations. (Or, as a viewer noted below, like the normal college kids, not the hippies, who began protesting Vietnam after 1968 when the draft expanded and threatened them.)
Recall, millennials are such a despicable generation because they inherited two bad traits. They were teenagers in the 2000’s before the global depression, so their parents were spoiling them like never seen before. These are the same kids who “won” trophies for merely participating in school sports and finishing last. Then, right as they were seeking jobs in the late 2000’s, they were unemployed and forced to become hipsters and baristas. Many of them could not afford college. Millennials are uneducated and yet still have huge egos, which are two deadly traits to have.
The SocGens are not inheriting those bad traits, it seems. They can afford college and are avoiding the mistakes of the tattooed potheads before them (Hopefully?).
The SocGens are also populists and they do not realize it. They reject establishment Democrats, such as Hillary Clinton. Young people wanted Bernie Sanders in 2016. They are against establishment. They are populists.
The SocGen’s are well organized. They are not yet scared by any employer into controlling the words that come out of their mouths. Sitting elected politicians had better start preparing their resumes for K Street.