Troubling out-of-context statistics and worrying isolated anecdotes suggest that members of "Generation Y"—loosely defined as all the people younger and stupider and more annoying than you and your peers—are lazy, unrealistic freeloaders, still living off their poor parents well into adulthood. Employment agency Manpower released a study last year that found that two-thirds of under-30 Americans (and Canadians!) would rather "pursue their dreams" than "make lots of money." What the hell is wrong with those people?
HSBC found that across the world, senior citizens are giving more money to their children than they're receiving. In France, 65% of people in their mid-20s are still living at home! They're all preventing their parents from enjoying the fruits of their years of service at steady jobs with good benefits and maybe even retirement plans, and they should be ashamed of themselves.
Why would "Generation Me," as sociologist Jean Twenge creatively dubbed them, do such a terrible thing? Because for some crazy reason reason people kept saying "believe in yourself and you can do anything," on Sesame Street and such?
"It's depressing to realize that your unrealistic dreams are never going to come true," says Twenge. And to stave off the inevitable everyone's quitting their job every year to go do "humanitarian work overseas," which just won't pay the rent.
At heart, "Generation Lost," as I call them, is stuck in an extended adolescence, refusing to come to grips with reality. This "Generation Blank," as I also call them, refuses to support itself because all its members are selfish praise-junkies who don't know the meaning of hard work and self-sacrifice.
Or hell maybe they're all still leaning on their folks because the boomer middle-class dream was revealed as a vicious scam and the social safety net was spent and legislated away by our parents once they got theirs? Who knows!
In the end, though, you don't really need to worry about any of this if you don't feel like it.
So will Gen Y be able to deal with the realities of kids-and-a-mortgage adulthood? The answer is that they probably won't do any better—or worse—than their parents did.Ha ha ha sure, we'll do just fine with our student loans and shitty credit and subprime mortgages and service industry jobs.
Narcissists in Neverland [Newsweek]