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Millennials Are the Best and the Worst

Alexis Bloomer, a radio personality who interned under Dan Rather, recently (2016) took it upon herself to evaluate what's so wrong with her own millennial generation. Here's her summary: "[Millennials are] just existing; we're not really contributing anything to society." According to Bloomer, Millennials are crass, ill-mannered, lazy, entitled, internet-obsessed, unpatriotic, underperformers. (When this illustration was written this video has over 43 million views.)

This isn't the first time an up and coming generation has been blasted for its immaturity. In the eighth century BC, Hesiod summarized the problem: "I see no hope for the future of our people if they are dependent on the frivolous youth of today, for certainly all youth are reckless beyond words." As did Plato in the fourth century: "What is happening to our young people? They disrespect their elders, they disobey their parents. They ignore the law. They riot in the streets inflamed with wild notions. Their morals are decaying. What is to become of them?"

However, it seems that Millennials, like every generation before them, have a choice to make. On the one hand, 80 percent of Millennials make charitable donations every year (despite massively increased student loan debt), and they're more likely than any other generation to donate their time and skills. Millennials are more optimistic about the future than previous generations, too, even though they've been through a financial crisis, family instability, and political dysfunction. They change jobs and location less often than earlier generations. They're having less casual sex and getting more degrees.

On the other hand, Millennials' marriage rates are almost half what they were when the boomers were that age. Less than half plan to have children. They're less likely to religiously affiliate. And they have a low view of human nature, with only 19 percent saying that most people can be trusted, compared to 40 percent of boomers.

Possible Preaching Angles: (1) Blame—People accuse millennials of poking the last holes in the societal boat because we're all hard-wired to transfer blame. It's one of our primal defense mechanisms. (2) Choices; Conformity; Worldliness; Sin—Each generation is tempted by original sin and worldliness. Which path will you choose?

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