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Taun

Questions For Younger Members

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I have a question for the younger members of UM...

I've noticed over the past few years that this current young generation appears more 'negative' in its outlook than generations of the recent past (at least my life time - 60 years)...

A large portion of the youth culture that I see - movies, music, books, e-chat, etc... seems almost obsessed with the darker things in life, much less 'hopeful' than say, my generation...

I'm not just talking about the recent youth gun attacks though you could say that that might be a symptom of it as well... But the tone of todays young adults seems so dark to me...

I don't know if it is a reaction to the shape of the world, or just a 'fad', or if I'm just an old fart and seeing something that isn't there...

My questions are:

- Do you feel that this generation of youth (ages 16-25 ish) is darker, than others in the recent past or not?

- If so - why?

Others outside this age group are certainly welcome to give their opinions as well...

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Yes, we are a darker generation for sure...I think it's partly to do with growing up in a word with with a dwindling economy, an elevating war and I think that the access we have to all things dark and dangerous on the internet warp our world view in a way, y'know, executions, cyber bullying and suicide, explicit pornography etc. All of the things the generations past would have imagined, we can see for real at the click of a button. Of course, part of me thinks that our generation may appear darker to the oldies simply because it's very unlike their own. People are having sex at younger ages, doing more drugs at younger ages; teen pregnancy is rife (and even has it's own TV show - I SAY!) and one of the most prevalent factors for many older people is that the young are more faithless in gods and religion - back in the day this would have been a social death sentence to declare such belief (or lack of)

Personally for me, I have a pessimistic outlook on most things and I think my reasons for this are valid in many ways, although some might disagree but if I am to compare my generation to those in the past then I'd say we've stepped into darker waters.

Edited by Sean93
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I can only speak for myself and some of my friends. Friends of mine and me, we're dark because of some event in our childhood or recent past that has made us look at life in a different way. However, I do have friends who are not dark at all, in fact out of all my friends only 2% of them are dark.

I don't think its a fad though, more often than not I see people of my age group (20-25), enjoying their lives completely oblivious to the events happening in and around their life. That's what I've observed in people around me. Don't know about others

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I agree with Sean here...

Edit: I guess the primary reason is internet. People see many more things which were in your age far less accessible Taun. My dad is about 15 years younger than you and doesnt even know how to turn on a computer. So i am glad that someone like you uses internet and forums to share their experiences.and knowledge.

Edited by Nuke_em
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I am 25 so I am at the higher end of the age range you gave, but I have to say that I have a darker view of the world as well. For me it all started on 9/11, I was in 8th grade at the time, after the first plane hit my teacher told us all that class was cancelled for the day because there was something more important going on in the world that we needed to see. He wheeled a TV into the classroom and turned on the news. I watched the 2nd plane hit live. It was at that moment that my rosy childhood glasses fell to the floor and the darkness in the world was made apparent to me. That was only the beginning. After that I saw how the nation came together...to seek revenge. I saw the invasion of Iraq and how it was based on lies. I watched as thousands died and suffered. I watched as Bush stood in front of the sign proclaiming victory when true victory never materialized. I saw our great nation torture and treat prisoners worse than dogs. I listened to all the lies about how good our economy was doing and then watched as it crashed and burned, and then I watched as the big banks and insurance firms that had the biggest hand in causing the crisis were bailed out. I watched as nobody was brought to justice for it.

So yeah, I have a little bit of a dark worldview. Can you blame me?

-Einsteinium

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Thanks for the responses!

It's interesting that you mentioned 9-11 as a defining moment for you Einsteinium... For my age group it was Kennedy's assassination, and the constant drum beat of potential nuclear holocaust... we had 'duck and cover' drills at school frequently, and basically every kid I knew was aware of what wave of incoming missiles would kill them (I grew up on or near military bases so it was a topic of discussion)...

Heck i even lived right below a hill that had Nike-Hecules air defense missiles on it (where my dad worked), and knew what all the sirens meant - drills, etc...

The day Kennedy was shot, I heard a siren I'd never heard before - THE siren - and saw the missiles coming up out of the ground with the red 'remove before flight' flags removed... I KNEW WWIII had started... It doesn't take long for your life to flash before your eyes when you're only 10...

But these were isolated incidents, and most of my age group never experienced them...

And yes I think the internet - and the current trend to stay interconnected 24/7 has a lot to do with it... Most people my age enjoy being DIS-connected :D !!

Nuke_em: I've been involved with computers and networking since the mid 70's - building them, repairing them and operating them.. so they are second nature to me...

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I think it stems from how we're raised, the negatives we're exposed to and the positives we're not exposed to at an early age. So many factors in this.

Illegitimi non carborundum

Edited by WoIverine
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Yes my parents mention Kennedy's assassination as a defining moment for them as well, and they have told me about the duck and cover drills. Wow that must have been frightening watching those missiles come out of the ground when you were 10! In my opinion it is staying connected 24/7 that is causing a lot of the depression and overly dark outlook for many in my generation. In many ways we are an experiment. Never before has anyone been as connected as we are, 24/7 news, 24/7 updates, war footage, conspiracy theories, anything we want to read or learn about is at our fingertips for better or worse. I personally also enjoy being DIS-connected, but many in my generation seem incapable of truly disconnecting from 'the machine' it is like a drug, an addiction to us. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out.

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And yes I think the internet - and the current trend to stay interconnected 24/7 has a lot to do with it... Most people my age enjoy being DIS-connected :D !!

I've been involved with computers and networking since the mid 70's - building them, repairing them and operating them.. so they are second nature to me...

Well like i said before i am glad that people know how to use this Tool of information age, many of my age ( 24 ) even my friends know only how to install games and use facebook... i on the other hand am a guy who service their computers, fixes them,..etc like you . So now you see why i appreciate people like you.

About 9/11 i would say it was most likely like the Eins said the key moment, like JFK for you, was watching the live stream on CNN when it happened pretty weird day..for me, must have been hell for you guys. And the Saddam H. situation was building the tension too... actualy there alot of bad events that made me/us a bit darker. Still i reveal my dark half here... in reality things aren't so dark or people dont want to talk about them. Well i just hope there will be no more heavy wars even though they might happen.. We are all the same people, same race only one thing is destroying us.... politics..

Edited by Nuke_em
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Yonger people dont care about any thing they are disrespectful,and its there parents fault.

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definitely our new generation is "darker" than the previous generations. Alot of people just like me experienced 9/11, failing economy, war built on fear prosecuted by racism. We (atleast i) grew up realising that this world isnt the world that we think it is. With the civil rights era only about 50 years away, our so called perspective of equality and freedom is only an illusion. I remember as a kid always finding myself baffled of how recent it was and the segregation that we still have today. It is a fact that the majority of rich and powerful people are white, and yes we have made progress, but it is definitely demoralizing as a minority to know there is still that sense of oppression. We are a lost generation waiting for a new revolutionary hero to arise and liberate our world from the oppressing powers that be. We know for a fact the youth of our nation are rebellious and may in fact be the most rebellious generation the world has seen, but nothing will be accomplished unless we mobilize our efforts to reshape our society and the world we will soon inherit. With our new age technology, we can unite and fight the oppressive regimes of the world together.

We just need guidance, organization and a small push to ignite the flame of revolution. Liberation is imminent in this vast world plagued by tyranny and oppression.

I can sense it, and I'm almost certain everybody reading this senses it. A new age of humanity is upon the horizon.

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Yonger people dont care about any thing they are disrespectful,and its there parents fault.

Now that is a blanket statement of epic flawed stereotype proportions. Some are yes, but many are not.

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Being an older codger I'm not qualified to talk about the current one, except I've seen several and can make comparisons.

They are all dark. First came the depression, then WWII and Korea, then the Assassinations and the American War in Vietnam, then 9-11. It never ends.

Countering this is that there has been a steady although broken advance in freedom, especially for women, and a steady improvement in living standards almost everywhere. The problem of young people in this regard is they have no memory of how things were and hence little sense of how they have improved.

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It is true that living standards have steadily improved, and it is true that each generation has lived through hard, dark times.

But why is my generation committing suicides at a rate so high some have called it a suicide epidemic? Why are we more depressed, more hopeless, and more pessimistic than prior generations? Can anyone answer these questions?

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But why is my generation committing suicides at a rate so high some have called it a suicide epidemic? Why are we more depressed, more hopeless, and more pessimistic than prior generations? Can anyone answer these questions?

Regarding suicide, I think it is just better and more honest statistics. In the past suicides were marked down as other things, to spare the family, etc. Now that it is not such a scandal, greater honesty has ensued.

I don't know that young people are more depressed, and so on. I would certainly not say they are happier, but happiness is a tough one to scale. I suspect that it stays fairly constant over time.

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Many of the younger generation have far too much of things which do not stimulate their brains and body, eg: the dreaded face book and computer games, They get bored very easily, like youngsters have always done, but the older generation seemed to have an imagination which did not revolve round sitting on games pressing buttons. Youngsters today just do not seem to know how to use their own imagination to create their own games, because they rely so much on what the computer does and tells them to do.

Not being able to think for myself and use my imagination would have drove me crazy and for sure brought out a dark side in me.

When i was a child, we built our own adventure playground and thinking of things to do was not hard.

its a shame that such a useful thing like the internet has also created a lot of useless people.......PLEASE NOTE I do not mean ALL of them......not the ones who post on here anyway, some are quite bright, whether they could cope in a power cut is a different story, but that goes to many adults today too.

Edited by freetoroam
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The younger generation seems, as a whole, much different than when I was growing-up in the 60''s and 70's.

However, I recall my mother saying the same thing about MY generation versus her's. So maybe that's true for ALL generations.

Just an opinion( and also from experience with 2 daughters and 3 grandchildren) I feel the internet, proliferation of cell phones and such has "connected" the current younger generation in powerful ways... absent the maturity of age, which in my opinion is dangerous.

But, just my thoughts and experiences. Surely other's have totally different perspectives on this.

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Many of the younger generation have far too much of things which do not stimulate their brains and body, eg: the dreaded face book and computer games, They get bored very easily, like youngsters have always done, but the older generation seemed to have an imagination which did not revolve round sitting on games pressing buttons. Youngsters today just do not seem to know how to use their own imagination to create their own games, because they rely so much on what the computer does and tells them to do.

Not being able to think for myself and use my imagination would have drove me crazy and for sure brought out a dark side in me.

When i was a child, we built our own adventure playground and thinking of things to do was not hard.

its a shame that such a useful thing like the internet has also created a lot of useless people.......PLEASE NOTE I do not mean ALL of them......not the ones who post on here anyway, some are quite bright, whether they could cope in a power cut is a different story, but that goes to many adults today too.

I agree completely on this... I have no kids of my own but my neices and nephews are so lacking in imagination (or at least seem so)... When I was young one of my very favorite toys was a simple cardboard box (very like Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes)... I could visualize it as almost anything... Oh I had other toys... but I enjoyed the box more... My neices and nephews didn't play with things if they were not recognizable toys, or games...

When I read a book - if I enjoy it - it stops being words on the page and it's like a private movie in my mind - that's also a problem because if the book doesn't trigger the 'mental movie' - I have a very difficult time forcing myself to finish the book... my neices and nephews (when they do read) report that it's just words to them - no real mental images...

So I do wonder if this 'graphics rich age' we live in is hurting our kids by restricting their imaginations...

Edited by Taun
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I think the fact that so many in my generation were prescribed strong drugs for adhd and such has probably had an effect on us. Plus our diets which now our mostly junk food and fast food. Also the economy is a big factor in the despair so many feel.

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When I read a book - if I enjoy it - it stops being words on the page and it's like a private movie in my mind -

Absolutely, this is so true.

Love my books and the computer can never replace them, even the kindle thing, its good and handy, but I love to see my books in the shelf, they trigger the memories even just seeing the titles.

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They are all dark. First came the depression, then WWII and Korea, then the Assassinations and the American War in Vietnam, then 9-11. It never ends.

Hello Frank, while I agree with you I think that it also depends on where your life just happens to fit in the world's time span. :)

I'm turning fifty this year (born 3 months before the JFK assassination) but I outlived the Cold War. Something that I thought would never happen. Also in the late 80's the economy was pretty good and things were looking up.

Thanks Taun, for starting this thread (one of the better on the forum right now). Thanks also to the younger members who've shared their well expressed perspectives.

Now, get off my lawn! :)

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Now, get off my lawn! :)

:lol:

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Now, get off my lawn! :)

Said with a Clint Eastwood-tone-of-voice, I presume. :D

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It is true that living standards have steadily improved, and it is true that each generation has lived through hard, dark times.

But why is my generation committing suicides at a rate so high some have called it a suicide epidemic? Why are we more depressed, more hopeless, and more pessimistic than prior generations? Can anyone answer these questions?

Unfortunately our generation pays a lot of heed to menial things. They are ready to end their lives at the age of 20, just because their gf/bf left them. They've become over sensitive and they think taking their life is the best way to go. The generation is more depressed, hopeless and pessimistic than prior generations because of the 'supposed' generation gap. We think our line of thought doesn't match our parents, so instead of talking it out with them we bottle everything up and start holding grudges, giving way to pessimism and depression. Most of the people who commit suicide and leave a suicide note always say 'No one understands me', which imho is ridiculous, maybe they didn't try hard to make someone understand. Oh and we also associate ourselves with the 'tragic celebrities', we take inspiration from Cobain, Winehouse and the likes... But that said, there are many many people in our generation who look at the brighter side of life.

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But that said, there are many many people in our generation who look at the brighter side of life.

Malala Yousafzai comes to mind, heck, she's even younger. :)

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