Returning guest blogger Sunny Frazier, whose first novel in the Christy Bristol Astrology Mysteries, Fools Rush In, received the Best Novel Award from Public Safety Writers Association, is here today to share what the Generation Gap is all about.
The third Christy Bristol Astrology Mystery, A Snitch in Time, is in bookstores now.
It recently came on my radar that there is a generational war going on between Baby Boomers and Millennials. Apparently, the phrase “Okay, Boomer” is a slam at my generation and considered derogatory and “ageist,” especially in the workplace. Another headache for the HR department.
I’m not all that clear about the tags put on generations. Sociologists seem to be involved and they are studying what differentiates them. There’s the date of birth, technology, education, work ethic, major events and peers. They define generations as The Greatest Generation, Traditionalist, Baby Boomers, Gen X, Millennials, Gen Z and coming soon, Gen Alpha.
The Greatest Generation was born at the turn of the 20th century. They survived WWI and the Great Depression.
Children born during the Depression (which would be my parents) are dubbed Traditionalists. dealt with WWII. They came home from the war, made lots of babies and the suburbs were created so Boomers could have backyards, dogs, safe neighborhoods and good schools. Mothers stayed home, fathers were the head of the household and worked to provide for their family. They showered kids with toys, took them to Disneyland, fed them Ding Dongs.
In response, Boomers rejected their parent’s values. Far less patriotic, they protested the Vietnam War. Hippies emerged as well as draft dodgers, bra burners, the sexual revolution, rock ‘n roll and getting high.
Generation Xers were born between 1965 and 1980. By now, both parents worked and divorce was common. They watched AIDS become an epidemic, war was declared on drugs, the Middle East erupted and there was an energy crisis. But now this generation is the glue holding the country together.
The Millennials came along between 1980 to the new century. The major change was the Internet. They watched the Twin Towers burn and school shootings. As a result, they don’t think it’s America’s job to save the world. Many delay adulthood and live at home. 40 percent either lack a job or are underemployed. A wedding ring is less important and women often choose to go it alone in parenting. Yet, this group remains optimistic, despite a job-killing recession, two wars and the threat of terrorism.
Gen Zs , born after 1995, have never experienced a world without technology. The Internet, cell phones and computers have always been part of their lives. They watch less TV and connect with by social media, where they spend 11 hours a day. They are concerned over global warming, buy eco-friendly products and are more inclined to eat plant-based foods.
So, what’s the prediction for the upcoming generation, coined the Alphas? Right now they’re learning their ABC’s but soon will learn Alexa knows more than mom and dad. While their elders used technology as a tool, they will see it as a way of life. But they won’t be in any rush to be adults, leave home or get married. Instead, they’ll wait until jobs and income are secure. It’s anticipated to be the most educated generation ever and the wealthiest.
Every generation has its pros and cons, is affected by major events and inevitably reject the values of generations before them. That’s how we move forward. But you know what? It’s “Okay, Boomers.”