One thing that really irks me is millennial bashing.
It’s not just because I am a millennial and I know what so many people in my generation had to struggle through with student debt, unemployment and housing prices. It’s because people make stupid assumptions that because young people use Instagram, it means they’re lazy, among many other untrue things.
This assumption is creeping into college campuses, where legitimate protests against racism, sexism, sexual assaults on campus and environmental destruction have yet again been hijacked by dumb myths. These myths are leading to policy moves which are cutting state education spending to the bone. Conservative’s favorable views of education are taking a nose dive. Because the Almighty Spray Tan says something is true, and science/empirical peer-reviewed research/facts backed up by primary sources/video footage/audio footage/people of color/women/anyone who disagrees with him says it’s false, it must be true.
An outstanding, in-depth Washington Post article tells a true story of former and current lawmakers with diametrically opposite views on education. One, a former Republican state senator, graduated from high school, joined the Army and eventually got around to going to college. Despite holding a graduate degree, he now opposes the practice of educating our youth at the 4-year collegiate level, if they don’t need it. He prefers community college vocational training. And of course, despite Obama wanting to make community college free nationwide, this guy believes that Obama wanted to push kids toward elitist institutions.
My personal theory is that guys like this are just pissed that people are protesting for change. They’re more Steve Bannon than Steve the high school dropout from rural Kentucky. After all, by percentage, people making middle-class money, voted at a higher percentage for Trump than “working-class” voters. They supported these education policies even though they’ve not only benefited from education themselves, but probably made more money from their education than someone with less education.
Crab-in-a-barrel syndrome seems to have struck this particular part of the population quite hard. Instead of encouraging the youth to seek truth and acquire knowledge by attending college, they want people to just fall in line and follow Trump.
Look, I get it: as a former struggling (academically) student myself, school is not a subjective measurement for intelligence. People are skilled in different areas of life. But it is a proven pathway to a higher income, a solid investment for governments and a valuable resource for bringing individuals up in life. It shouldn’t be trashed.