OPINION: Those darn millennials

Millennials. They're so lazy. They're so entitled. Where did their parents go wrong? We recently had a reader point out that Millennials, which typically describes that infuriating generation of tech-savvy people born between 1981-1997, are known...

Candy DenOuden
Candy DenOuden

Millennials. They're so lazy. They're so entitled. Where did their parents go wrong?

We recently had a reader point out that Millennials, which typically describes that infuriating generation of tech-savvy people born between 1981-1997, are known for "failing at work" because they want to play, not work. And thank goodness someone finally brought this up. It's about time. After all, look at some of the ridiculous things millennials are demanding:

1. Lower student loans. According to the Pew Research Center, "(Millennials) are entering adulthood with record levels of student debt: Two-thirds of recent bachelor's degree recipients have outstanding student loans, with an average debt of about $27,000. Two decades ago, only half of recent graduates had college debt, and the average was $15,000." But never mind that. And never mind that it's almost impossible to get skilled jobs without a post-secondary degree or certification or some kind. (I mean, who cares if you're failing at your job, right?)

"In an increasingly knowledge-based economy, young adults today who do not advance beyond high school have been paying a much stiffer penalty - in terms of low wages and high unemployment - than their counterparts did one and two generations ago," Pew says.

No big deal.


2. Fair pay. According to Pew, "Median household income in the U.S. today remains below its 1999 peak, the longest stretch of stagnation in the modern era, and during that time income and wealth gaps have widened." Millennials seem to think it's important to be able to pay their rent, student loans and still be able to eat more than once a day. The sense of entitlement is nauseating.

3. Equal rights: Even millennials who hold to traditional religious values on topics like same-sex marriage seem to be indoctrinated with the idea that all people should be treated as humans, with dignity and respect, regardless of their race, religion, ethnicity or sexual orientation. What's next? Peace on Earth, good will toward men?

4. Environmental concerns: More and more entitled, lazy young people are walking and biking to work, growing their own food or installing systems for solar, geothermal or wind energy. The nerve.

5. Living within their means: Baby Boomers taught us the right way to live the American dream: Go big or go home. Preferably to a big home. Bigger cars, bigger houses, bigger TVs-it's what I'd like to hereafter refer to as the "Texas effect." Everything is bigger, just because it can be. But these conniving millennials have dared to buck this trend, saying that the consumer-driven American dream isn't really their scene. They've canceled cable and entertainment services, limited phone use and opted for free wifi where it's publically available. Also, have you heard about these tiny houses? They're a thing. Mostly because millennials can't afford a sprawling, five-bedroom home.

6. Philanthropy: Millennials aren't just preoccupied with wanting to make sure they have enough money to survive, they seem to think others should, too. According to the Millennial Impact Report, 84 percent of millennial employees made charitable donations in 2014, and 70 percent spent at least an hour volunteering in 2014. So now millennials seem to think they need to live within their means, have enough money to eat, live and give to charity? What kind of monsters are these people?

7. Work-life balance. According to an EY survey, One-third of full-time employees globally say it has gotten more difficult to manage work/family in the last five years. Globally, younger generations are seeing their hours increase more in the last five years, just in time to start families and never be able to see them. Plus, "Millennials (78 percent) are almost twice as likely to have a spouse/partner working at least full-time than Boomers (47 percent)," the survey continues. Millennials seem to think their health and families are more important than their company's profits. What is that all about?

As a millennial, I'm ashamed that I, too, have been guilty of many of these things. Working two jobs, renting a small apartment, forgoing cable and Internet (and groceries, occasionally), buying an older car with cash so I don't have to make payments? Gen X would have done it better.

It's high time someone took these millennials to task. Trying to make it in the worst economy since the Great Depression, moving back in with parents just to make ends meet, waiting longer to have children so they can afford diapers-these are all things that need to stop. They don't call us the "entitlement generation" for nothing.


To all my millennial friends: Let's return to the example set by previous generations, and see if we can start sinking ourselves into unmanageable credit card debt as soon as possible. Before long, maybe we could have a foreclosed home and a repossessed car.

It's our right.

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