Monday, January 23, 2012

Why Kids Are Rude, the 21st Century by the Chili Peppers

I believe that it's a defensible statement to say that kids these days--meaning me especially--are more rude than kids ever have been. We conduct ourselves with the confidence of a people who live in an unshakable world. We might screw up our own lives, we seem to think, but that won't affect too much, so why worry about it? As a result we treat our elders with less awe than we ever have. Our elders are as they have always been better educated, more experienced, possessing greater qualifications. As in all ages before, the generations that precede the youth built the world as it is, its badness and all its greatness. As ever, our parents, teachers, grandparents, bosses, and all those old folks deserve our respect. Unlike ever before my generation acts per capita with less decorum than any other period. Refinement is falling away. We are rude kids.

It's a truth I think, if taken objectively. We are rude kids. As with many behaviors, something motivates our lack of refinement. There is a reason for how we seem to be so awfully ungrateful and inconsiderate. It's different, I have discovered from my research, than the motivation behind what they called the "Me" generation during the '70s. Hippies had a pretense of rebuilding what they saw as a broken system. It is the wont of every generation to rebuild the world as they see fit. Accepting this sociological fact simplifies things. In the '70s there was a mood of pacific revolution--all you knucking need is cucking love, let it be and all that jazz. The difference here between my generation and the flower power kiddos has everything to do with attitude. Gone seems to be all sense of amorphous "we need to do something!" Do what? we ask. "I don't know. Something!" That's gone.

Don't be growing some sense of hope that my generation has any idea what we're doing either. We have no idea. Almost less, maybe, because we're a bunch of coffee addicted sillies living a cushy life. We have a different idiom, though. The paradigm of amorphous passivity has been superceded by many different frames of thought and it has now taken a frame of situational skepticism. We are not a generation of doubters and we are not a generation of vaguely shifting take-what-we're-fed either. We've found some strange balance between the two. If given a proposition we almost always trust it and question it at the same time based on different circumstances, for instance what authority feeds us the information, what priod knowledge we have, our mood and the weather, if we're hungry and other physical factors, our upbringing. We might be a rude generation but in some ways we are more respectful than ever because we have actually learned from the past. We don't doubt everything, we don't hate everything, nor do we accept or love it all. Things, people, must prove themselves to us. Usually we will approach new situations without strong disposition. Maybe we'll be a little wary of things we think may go wrong or excited about things we've experienced that have gone right in the past. In general, though, we arrive and observe and wait for the situation to prove itself to us. That goes double for people. Sure we come across as rude. We're often neutral, waiting for newly met elders to invent themselves to us one way or the other. If you win our dismay then we will not feel it necessary to hide it. But if you win our respect we can be more loyal than the rising stars.

There are a lot of contributing factors to this and I think I'll write about them in a few days.


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