I know that my generation has, and continues to, cause massive problems for our country and the world. I’ve known it for a long time. By the early 1980’s I was bemoaning the way we wasted the chance to change things for the better. I really feel the sting in the verse from Keven Gilbert’s “Goodness Gracious”:
Goodness Gracious of apathy I sing
The baby boomers had it all and wasted everything
Now recess is almost over
And they won’t get off the swing
And I see now that there are untold articles and books that either condemn my generation, or ridicule it, or like yours, suggest that “something must be done” about us.
You are not wrong about what we’ve done, merely incomplete. And it is understandable that you focus on the bad, because it is really bad, and it’s falling on you. It’s falling on my son as well. I think the only thing that keeps him from condemning me to my face is that I am lucky enough to have his love. He knows the score. He just hasn’t called me on it. Perhaps someday.
I just want to offer here a couple of notes of caution about what it means to condemn a generational cohort.:
- Someone, somewhere, at some time, will decide that a person’s birth year is their crime. I’ve already read in these comments words like “euthanasia” and “quarantine”. Your title asks “What are WE going to do about THE BOOMERS? There will be someone, perhaps running for office, who will offer an answer to that question.
- Focusing on WHO created the problem nets no positive value. Catching and jailing a serial killer might stop future murders, but it does not bring back the previous victims. So here we stand, condemned. Now what? Dunce caps and re-education camps? Ostracism?. Seppuku? There’s a lot of digital ink being spilled to point to the culprits. Even if it doesn’t result in the typical ritual of scapegoating, it wastes time and effort. We can’t apologize enough. But maybe we can pitch in and help, if you will lead the way with forgiveness.
- Being blamed by one’s offspring for a generation’s faults is as ancient a practice as parenting. Your day is coming.