As you age, there are suddenly moments where you think “oh no, I have become that old person.” Even as I type this post, I feel like the old guy yelling, “hey kids get off my lawn” or “turn that music down.” With that said, as you age, you begin to make observations about the generations that are in front of you and those that are coming behind you. I have been recently noticing some traits that seem to be missing in young people that seemed very common in the generations before me. I am pretty sure I am not wearing rose color glasses as I look back.
I invest in the next generation in many ways. I love and care deeply about so many in the generation to come. As I hang out with them and read what they write and hear there songs, I see some things that are concerning. I certainly do not want to pigeon hole an entire generation. I have run into young adults and students who have and live out the following values. But as I thought about it, I think the fact that these people and my experiences with them stand out is telling me something. Why should these behaviors be odd? The fact that they seem peculiar are an indication that these behaviors are getting more scarce.
- work ethic – it appears that the idea of selling out to a task is fading. I watch and hear many who just quit when things get hard. There is consistent complaining about practice, training and jobs.
- purity – it seems that the idea of waiting for marriage for sex is not only out dated, but it is considered foolish and some would press it to say that it is really even harmful. Test drive the car and check out sexual capability have become the mantras of today. Sex is considered casual and expected in the dating process. If you do not see it that way, you are not just weird, some would say you are wrong.
- modesty – the idea of keeping one’s body a mystery seems to be gone. Clothes get tighter and smaller. Pics on social media leave little or nothing to the imagination. Snap chat and sexting have completely broken down the wall of personal boundaries. To push back on what both boys and girls want and wear seems to be received as though you are an alien.
- honesty – it blows my mind how quickly people just lie. There seems to be no hesitation to make up facts, deny responsibility, pass the buck or spin the story. I have witnessed this happen to me and to others and it seems like many are actually not only comfortable with this, they have become masters at it.
- law-abiding – so what that it is against the law. I know the speed limit, the drinking age, the law on marijuana, downloading illegal music and movies, and so on, but if I am not going to get caught, who cares. The law is still the law.
I see my own struggle to maintain some of these in the generation I grew up in. It saddens me that these are fading or at least appear to be fading. I long for some young people to fight for these.