Much has been said over the last year or so about how millenials don’t trust parties (meaning the political kind, not the awesome kind where drinks and hors d'oeurves are served), institutions, organized religion, and “the man” in general.
And the people behind these studies and articles are very concerned about our open cynicism. Because, really, it’s a distrust of, well, the people behind the studies and the articles.
And really, can you blame us?
We are the generation who has seen myriad scandals and lies in politics and the church and financial institutions with the utter transparency that internet research provides.
How is distrusting proven dishonesty further evidence of the problem with my generation?
"You're special! You earned that trophy! Good job!"
Frankly, I see it as the greatest hope of current youth culture. We’re tired of the lies, and we’re going to put our (often very paltry sums of) money where our mouths are. Meaning, not in your political coffers, Republicans and Democrats (I'm still unconvinved that there is any difference between you, by the way). Or into the churches that gave us a watered down, touchy-feely version of the power of an everlasting God.
Actually, that whole under the mattress or in a jar plastered behind a wall thing our great-grandparents did after the Depression when they stopped trusting the banks is seeming like more and more of a good idea.
My generation was told we could do anything and be anything and that we were destined for greatness. Maybe that went to our egos once upon a time, but the great weight of life and student loan debt is crushing that right out of us, and leaving us with just a tinge of bitterness.
When life hands you lemons, get some sugar and grain alcohol
and make some Limoncello. Then, invite over some friends for an Italian
themed party, complete with ironic fake mustaches.
Millenials are old enough to see the reflection of their elders in the parakeet mirror that has been placed in front of us our whole lives. We see ourselves and them for what they truly are.
And we’re kind of ok with that. Not with being flawed, but knowing that we aren’t alone in it. That still doesn’t mean we’ll eventually join long established political parties. Quite the contrary. We’re pretty much ok with watching them go the way of the dinosaurs (but not in the awesome bring them back to life in a doomed theme park way). Same with the churches that don’t give real spiritual fulfilment or impart responsibility on their members.
And as for the financial and government institutions that have lied and robbed us our entire lives…well, once we’ve paid back our student loans, don’t look to us for your next big projects. And there’s no emergency fund wrapped in plastic in a box and buried somewhere in my backyard.
I’d like to say that we’ll promise not to lie to our children and grandchildren like you have. But, well, the apples don’t fall far from the [expletive deleted]. However, I can say that our lies will not be the same as our predecessors. But yes, children, toy dinosaurs do come in the night to eat your Halloween candy.