It must be a new trend in the media to target their future user base.
Some might think I’m beating a dead horse, but I’m not quite done yet.
I take offense when anyone that calls into question my quality as a person, and just as much offense when people make sweeping negative generalizations about entire groups of people. I spoke about a similar topic not long ago, though previously it was regarding a New York Times writer and his limp support of an out-of-touch professor in Chicago.
I won’t make generalizations. There are plenty of folks from previous generations that don’t cast Millennials in a disparaging light. Similarly, many reporters and professors have more progressive views of one of the fastest growing segments of media, videogames. Instead, I want to attempt to coin a term to help identify the folks that choose to single out entire generations, and subsequently lament the evolution of society.
Young men in the 1940s liberated Europe from Nazism and the Pacific from the Japanese Empire. Today, too many stay home playing video games. https://t.co/e7FTe0O20P
— Joe Scarborough (@JoeNBC) August 7, 2017
A nostalgiaddict is someone that longs for the past so much, that they cannot stand a future that doesn’t match up with their expectations. The reality of an ever-changing society shatters their mind, and the notion that something as menial as the form of entertainment that a group chooses to indulge in, is anathema to them.
Nostalgiaddicts point to previous generations (whether their own or before theirs) to illustrate a simpler time, before a token modern convenience ruined everything. While videogames and the internet are the current targets, I remember a time when Harry Potter was teaching children about witchcraft, and Dungeons & Dragons was the breeding ground for Satanism.
If I could shake my head any harder, I would decapitate myself.
Those nostalgiaddicts point to “better” eras, as Mr. Scarborough did, pointing out that while the young men of the Greatest Generation were fighting the fascist Axis powers and imperialist Japanese, our modern generation of men and women are wallowing in their own filth at home in front of their videogames.
Nevermind how that era of America that Mr. Scarborough holds so dear was still segregated, even in the military. Entire groups of Americans were confined to internment camps on the suspicion that they might sympathize with the enemy (though Japanese-Americans weren’t the first to suffer from war prejudices, but they were more easily identified). That while the horrifying utilization of nuclear weapons showcased incredible destructive power with a single bomb, entire cities such as Tokyo and Dresden were bathed in incendiaries that didn’t discriminate between civilians and military targets. That isn’t even taking into consideration that many of those men that were deployed to the Atlantic and Pacific theaters during WWII came home with unseen scars that would only be acknowledged in a post-Vietnam War era.
Unfortunately for Mr. Scarborough, his argument falls flat on its face because he adopted the asinine posturing of writing off the generation whose volunteer commitment to military service is proportionally higher than those that served prior to the mothballing of the draft. Worse still, the article that inspired Mr. Scarborough’s ridiculous tweet has nothing to do with the point he was trying to make.
Regardless, today’s destroyers of society are considered to be smartphones, the internet, and videogames. Many videos have been made and paraded about social media
in an attempt to expose and combat this trend to capitalize on the perception that society is unravelling at the seams in order to gain exposure or turn a profit. It’s no surprise to me that there are some my age that are buying into this narrative, believing that technology will result in the end of society.
An Unnamed Reader
I’ve seen a lot among people my age and younger (I’m 23) is a strong tendency to identify as in some way preferring isolation from other people. The most obvious instance of this is the large number of people I know in that age range who identify themselves as introverts…
The presence of other people is treated as a nuisance, an exhausting and tedious task of putting up with overly-energetic plebeians who couldn’t possibly understand your tastes in photography and gritty, authentic literature. I’ve even heard more than one particularly nasty people in this group say, on multiple occasions, that they hate people. Full stop, without qualification, “I hate people.” This is usually occasioned by some petty rudeness or ignorance on part of the unwashed masses with whom these elevated introverts have the misfortune of using the same grocery store or university.
As an introvert, married to an introvert, I want to spend a little time unpacking this statement.
I’ve made the claim that “I hate people” before, and it’s hyperbole. It’s almost always hyperbole, and usually uttered by introverts like myself that are unfortunate enough to be forced into social interaction with rude, obnoxious, or mean-spirited people. In my experience, me stating that “I hate people” often came at the end of dealing with a particularly bad customer at work, always in private away from the people I’m serving, whether it was to my wife or a coworker.
I’d venture a guess that the reader who wrote this statement isn’t an introvert, and therefore doesn’t understand the topic he’s speaking of. In my experience, introverts with interests that fall outside of the accepted norms are marginalized; something that is obviously lost on a person that looks upon interests outside his own with such disdain.
You won’t be surprised to learn, I’m sure, that the rate of depression and anxiety among the self-identified introverts I know is ridiculously high. In fact, I don’t know if I can think of a single person I know who parades that personality trait who doesn’t have long-standing issues with mental illness.
As an introvert that doesn’t suffer from a mental illness of any sort, I find this sort of sweeping generalization to be grossly reductive. Some people just don’t like to spend the majority of time with others, like myself. In fact, there are some periods of time when I am perfectly happy to spend my days with only Jennifer and my pets as my company. Spending extended periods of time with others is often mentally exhausting, especially when those people don’t mesh with my personality. Worse still, this point of the reader’s is anecdotal at the very best, and is unfalsifiable.
That means that he’s somehow making words excrete from his rectum.
Now regarding porn use, which I know you’ve blogged about a lot recently: you’re right. I’m a high church Christian myself… To the best of my recollection, every single male besides myself… was an active porn user, or had been relatively recently. As the discussions went on in both groups, I found myself uncomfortably silent — I’ve never watched or even wanted to watch porn, but I didn’t want to say so and sound impossibly holier-than-thou.
If this sounds “holier-than-thou”, it’s because it is. As a non-delusional Christian, I know that anyone that claims they don’t struggle with temptation is lying. Everyone struggles with temptation, and pornography is something that many believers have trouble contending with. It isn’t easy, and reeks of self-righteousness for one to claim that they don’t struggle with it, therefore can’t relate.
Now, you may wonder why I’m singling this individual out. This is a Millennial that is content with throwing his own generation under the bus to appeal to the sensibilities of those that need something to shake their fist at when there aren’t any errant clouds in the sky. The reader is catering to an audience that already has negative preconceived notions about Millennials.
Additionally, this are the types of individual who is used by nostalgiaddicts as insider proof that the next generation is throwing away the future.
It’s likely that I’m speaking in an echo chamber, and many of you readers will agree with my opinion in part at least. My plea, however, is to the ever emboldened group of nostalgiaddicts out there who are attempting to impress that my generation is somehow shirking our collective duty to society to pursue our own selfish interests.
To be honest, if we are in fact pursuing our selfish interests in some vast conspiracy to piss off our elders, we’re only following your example. Previous generations have seemingly gone out of their way to secure what they feel they deserve. If you want any proof of this, look no further than The United States’ legislative system, which is so full of Baby Boomer golden cows that Moses would’ve started smashing the Ten Commandments into dust if he were alive today (yes, I just made a Bible joke).
All religious humor aside, I implore those who feel that society is crumbling at the foundation due to the prevalence of technology only take a moment to consider that maybe there are other external forces at work which are responsible for the way things are going. It’s likely that many of the youth who prefer to play videogames simply do so because they find them entertaining, in lieu of watching cable news, ESPN, or reality television during their downtime. Those hobbies of ours are not any more likely to be disintegrating the fabric of society than the entertainment that you hold dear.
As someone that not only plays videogames on a regular basis (probably at levels that most of the nostalgiaddicts consider to be an addiction), but has also been happily married for almost five years (this October!), maintains his own website/blog, has participated in NASA research, will complete a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science this year (and perhaps continue with a Master’s in Data Analytics), practices his faith with conviction, and does whatever he can to help those around him… Surely you can see that us Millennials aren’t nearly as bad as we’re being made out to be.
Otherwise, just wait until we edge you out as the voter base in The United States. Then all hell will break loose!
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