It’s a question that nobody asks themselves more than frustrated young people. What is up with everyone hating on millennials? It’s gotten to the point that the term “millennial” no longer brings up pride in our generation (if it ever did). Mention the word to anyone and you’ll be able to feel the tension it creates, the better-than-thou attitude that spins off it wherever it’s said.
Young people are dealing with this in what might be the best way possible: the internet. Endless articles, tweets and memes can be found where millennials destroy the arguments of the older generation in a humorous way. We’re tired of it. Being the butt end of every joke from the baby boomers has gotten old, so why is it still around?
Millennials Mean Change
It doesn’t matter what generation you’re in — change can be scary, especially if that change affects a world you’ve lived in for a long time. That’s what the baby boomers are dealing with, and because they struggle to keep up with the near daily changes to society caused by people younger than them, they get bitter. Enter the millennials.
Young people are able to see the technology and resources at their fingertips and use it to improve how things are run. Some change has meant a shift in the economy, like when diamond corporations realized millennials weren’t buying any jewels. Instead of recognizing that millennials are toting a collective $1 trillion of student debt around on their backs and can barely afford to shop for groceries, it’s easier to blame them for the decrease in diamond sales rather than change age old business habits. Because that makes sense.
Millennials also shift the economy for the better in other places. For example, popular apps and websites today feature food delivery. The internet has become a place for nearly any restaurant to create a delivery option, since 74% of millennials would rather order out than cook. As a result, restaurants have a whole new outlet to bring in revenue through. Yet, most baby boomers would look at that statistic and scoff, calling millennials “lazy,” rather than recognizing the potential for economic growth.
Change Can Seem Backwards
Not all change can look good at first, and many baby boomers are concerned about the millennial generation because they’re their children and baby boomers don’t want their kids making mistakes. So when they notice that millennials aren’t buying homes, it sets off alarm bells. Again, they’re picturing millennials growing up in the world they did, not struggling with unpaid internships and salaries that can’t compete with the rising cost of living.
Then again, another thing baby boomers have come to be known for is not researching anything they read online. While millennials may be renting more than the last generation, home sales are the highest since 2007, meaning that real estate agents will live to see another day. Young people are going to buy homes, just not as quickly as the previous generation did.
But Really Now It’s Just Clickbait
The goal of articles isn’t just to be read anymore, it’s also to see how quickly it can be shared. That’s why clickbait titles are so commonly found, and titles accusing millennials of “killing” social standards or trends are well-known for being conversation fodder. Anything to get those likes and shares.
While young people aren’t into bar soap or marmalade, the things we are into have brought about a lot of good. People in our generation created social media platforms to bring people together while creating new job opportunities with small online businesses. We’ve got world changers like Beyoncé, Prince William and Usain Bolt who remind us that we can do anything.
That’s why it’s easy for young people to joke about the toxic millennial stereotype. We can recognize that it was born out of fear of the unknown, and we can see what’s coming since it’s our generation that’s hopping in the driver’s seat now.
People hate millennials because people hate change, but millennials continually prove that while struggling to eat, pay bills or dream of anything bigger than our closet-sized apartments, we can change the world. We’ve already started, we just might have to wait another couple paychecks to take another step forward.