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Quotes / The Generation Gap

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My friend Faith Salie stirred up a lot of trouble on last week's show with an essay about the phrase "OK boomer", the millennial generation's way of waving away the opinions, instructions and interference of old people — people like me. I take no offense, we baby boomers are used to being condescended to. We grew up under a barrage of insults form the World War II generation. They never stopped reminding us that they were raised in the Depression, they beat Hitler, while we had everything given to us. The Archie Bunker crowd were dubbed "the Greatest Generation". Whatever. The era that included Beethoven, Napoleon, William Blake and Thomas Jefferson had nothing on you guys! My generation gave the world three great icons: Seinfeld, Soprano and Simpson.

Now , I concede that baby boomer culture has taken up a lot of oxygen. Springsteen and the Stones still sell out stadiums, The Avengers and Spider-Man dominate the box-office, every anniversary of Woodstock and Sgt. Pepper is celebrated like it was the discovery of America. And I appreciate how burdensome that must be to the children of Facebook. As as to our having messed up the planet, no argument. I would only suggest that the planet was kinda in rough shape when we arrived. Pollution, nuclear weapons, racial injustice, world hunger; we inherited all that.

What can the boomers take credit for? Well, look. America's cities were a disaster when we were growing up. The baby boom generation reclaimed the cities and made them places people want to raise families. Communication has been revolutionized, extreme poverty has shrunk, crime and violence have shrunk. Prejudice is a never-ending bane, but the baby boomers have advanced rights for African-Americans, women and the LGBTQ community in ways undreamed of in our parents' time. No generation gets it all right, no generation fixes everything. I sure hope my millennial children do better than my generation has done. By the way, when I read this essay to my 25-year-old son, he said "OK, Andy Rooney". I couldn't believe he knew who Andy Rooney was.
Bill Flanagan, CBS Sunday Morning

Homer: You wouldn't understand, dad. You're not with it.
Abe: I used to be with it, but then they changed what "it" was. Now what I'm with isn't "it", and what's "it" seems weird and scary to me. It'll happen to you!

Hey, let me introduce you to a filter that should be running at all times when you're in these circumstances. Parent leans forward, open quotations... and just, you put the filter on, and here's what you hear: "Hey, why don't you go be me? For a while. Why don't you go do what I did? Like, I know you're doing you right now, but why don't you go do me? Just be me! Be me for a while! I don't know why you're always in here being you, wasting all your time on you, when frankly, back in my day, I was me. So what you should be doing is, you should be being me. Go out and be me!" And you're like, "Okay, cool, got it, thanks."
Woolie Madden, Castle Super Beast #90: Revengenetics


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