I recently read an article over at Bloomberg discussing the much-talked about differences between millennials and boomers. The general point of view of the article came down to two distinct points: of course they are different and why are we still talking about this?
My thoughts exactly.
In working as a writer who caters to a specific generation, I am constantly inundated with articles about this very subject and the above sentiment has always been my opinion on the matter. People write these pieces about the difference that separate generation as if they are pointing out some great psychological discovery that define our current world. What they are, in reality, doing is explaining to we the readers in cryptic, almost apocalyptic tones something that is not only obvious, but something that has been true forever.
This is no new concept. There are people on this world who, separated by years of age, share different opinions. These articles go on about the great differences that exist between people in their 20s and people in their 50s as if that’s some wise observation. The same was true when boomers were in their 20s and the same will be true when millennials are in their 50s. It’s inevitable and wholly uninteresting in my opinion.
But the issue is not that there are countless pointless articles on the subject – that’s easy enough to ignore. The problem comes with what these articles aim to do. They want to highlight the gap and throw blame from one side to the other. They want to pit these generations against one another through their writing. Worse and more unforgivable, some people buy into this ridiculous point of view. On social media and in the comment sections I always see these people complaining about selfish boomers or lazy millennials, generalizing an entire generation into their one tweet.
The question is, why would these differences mean anything to us anyway. Yes, a large portion of the boomer population disagrees with a large portion of the millennial population on a number of issues, but none of that erases the similarities they share. We have all lived in multi-generational surroundings and have been perfectly content with each other. These people are of a different generation, yes, but they are also our family, our friends and our loved ones. What differences could possibly matter weighed against that?