The word “millennial,” even to those who identify as one, carries stereotypes like entitled and lazy. Baby boomers and millennials are regularly pitted against one another the way conservatives and liberals are.
We are not any more dependent on technology or slaves to our pixelated screens than is required of us. We are not any less hardworking than our grandparents. In fact, the cost of homeownership and higher education are significantly higher than older generations’, and our wages have yet to rise to level with the costs.
Student debt and unpaid internships are our normal, but we are human, and by default determined to work hard to stay alive, just like generations before us who had different struggles. And while our struggles differ, humanity has stayed and will stay relatively similar throughout history.
It’s simply the context that makes it all seem so drastically separated. Our wardrobes vary, our slang transforms, our music modifies, but on the whole, people don’t change much.
Generalizing any group of people in one category is a recipe for conflict and controversy. Pilling us all together does everyone a disservice. Those of us in the category of “millennial” are unique to one another and still so similar to everyone, regardless of age.
Millennials are changing the world for the better, regardless of the negativity that comes with our birth years. We are breaking apart gender binaries and calling attention to racial inequality.
We are determined to save the planet and the communities that live within. We are artistic, covered in paintings etched by needles and flower crowns wrapped up with dyed hair. We are educated, taking advantage of the technology invented by generations before us.
We are, again, hardworking, carrying the weight of expected unpaid internships and student debt despite our full-time jobs. We are creative, funny, talented, innovative; and we are all of the bad things that we say baby boomers are too. We are human, and so we are like everyone else on the planet as everyone else is so much like us.
Photo taken from Flickr.