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My Generation is F'ed. by Heston H. SnodgrassSUMMARY: A short and opinionated essay about why my generation scares me.
My generation is f***ed. We're the kids of the cultural pioneers, the hippies, the beats, the punk rockers, the classic rock mustachioed, the eighties cocaine kings and queens, but most of all the paranoid and disenfranchised youth of yesteryear coping with idealisms that have faded with time, leaving nothing but an empty void.
My parents didn't have it to bad. Their parents grew up in the depression, where hope for change was having a dead end job because it put bread on the table. My mom hoped for the various nuclear power plants to shut down. My grandparents fought the Nazis and against an oppressive Korean regime. My dad watched hundreds of kids with peace signs on their helmets get killed by villagers with AK-47s hidden in the grain they cooked with.
When the fifties finally broke down and the American Dream was reduced to hiding under your school desk so hopefully the blast wouldn't erase your atoms from the Earth, the youth organized. There were rallies. And not just the ones railing against Vietnam and other stereotypical hippy causes. They rallied together to celebrate life and independence. They would gather, faces different but connected, and just be happy to be alive and surrounded by people of their same ilk. My generation has Facebook.
I was born the year the Berlin Wall fell. I've grown up in a country so used to fear that we revel in it. I've seen the impeachment of a president over a blowjob and a full eight years of lie after lie from my leader that was justified under national security. I remember watching the second tower getting hit by a plane live on TV, and going to school that day being told everything was ok.
We were having drug education at the time and my teacher bravely told our scared, seventh grade selves that Marijuana was the leading cause of insanity among teens. I felt safer knowing that watching the black silhouettes of bodies choosing to leap from eighty stories up instead of burning alive wouldn't make me crazy. That same teacher once told us how she had seen the Grateful Dead live in the late sixties.
I'm not saying that my generation has it any tougher. In fact, we have it easier. There in lies the problem. It was too easy for me to hop on AIM the night of September 11th and tell my friend how I was scared. It was too easy when my Marine cousin sent me pictures of what an Iraqi mortar shell does to a barracks. It was too easy for me to watch those You Tube videos of the Wall Street investors losing their livelihoods in seconds. My generation has it so easy that we don't even have to rally, we network.
Now I am an avid Obama supporter so raging against the system is losing its fun. My president won and things are changing. Hope is back in the air and it is finally cool to be an American again. What irks me is that I've been really trying, but I can't find enough emotional involvement to care. World of Warcraft didn't grind to a halt when the economy collapsed. Lost still cranked out great episodes every week when people lost homes by the hundreds.