I’ve been rough on America’s young ones. I admit it.
Whenever I observe young men and women the age of my children whining about being offended, by having their feelings hurt, about not being handed every possible benefit, all while seated aimlessly playing games on the latest iPhone and making zero effort to provide for themselves? Yes. I’m rough on them. Again, I own it.
I’m baffled by a generation which has no concept of hard work, and that in many ways it is its own reward. And I use the term ‘hard’ to mean steady, committed, determined and focused. I’m further distraught over them thinking it acceptable when not getting their way to riot, looting businesses often having provided some of them jobs. And who led them to believe it’s okay to take up arms against the various law enforcement agencies and first responders who are always there for them?
If this sounds like I’m tossing them all in the same gunny sack, I need to correct that. There are exceptions to the Millennials’ sorry reputation. And the younger ones coming after them? The same is true. Forgive what seems like a burdensome and unfair generalization.
We just celebrated Fathers Day. It came to me this morning that this is a terrific chance for me to offer some long-withheld appreciation to The Standouts. They’re the ones the couch spuds ridicule and call names. Standouts are the high-schoolers and university wogs having little time for much else because they’re after it in life.
You don’t know them? Of course not. You rarely see them, for they’re busy studying – for real – or otherwise busy working to take care of themselves. Some of them work 2 jobs.
Standouts get lumped into the same dump truck as their lazy, hazy peers. That is unfortunate and, for myself, I apologize for that irritating generalization. Standouts earn my admiration.
I apologize for that irritating generalization. Standouts earn my admiration.
They are the stuff of which our nation will be reconstructed.
Stand-outs? You’re doing it right. You’re not waiting for orders; you’re busy trying until you find what works for you. We who spend our days adulting notice and appreciate you. Keep it up!
So. Here’s to you, Stand-out kids. You’re making life happen, and in the process making your older brothers and sisters look foolish. I heard a couple of lines over the past few days that sound like your spirit. One young contestant on American Ninja was asked since she’s not won after several tries what her plans are. She never even blinked. Her answer: “I’m not finished doing what I CAN do!”
Yeah! There’s a winning attitude, no matter where she places.
And I read this online: “I AM NOT FOR EVERYONE.”
I love that attitude! Stand-outs, the biggest mistake you can make is trying to please everyone, to assure everybody likes you, that your opinions always comport with everyone’s around you. If that’s the biggest goal in your life, you’re unnecessary.
- Decide who you are for. Choose carefully.
- Seek out persons of any age who are doing what you want to do and being what you’d like to become.
- Hang with the encouragers, the dreamers, the inventors and thinkers and writers and painters and sculptors.
- Stay up with tech’s advances, but never allow Big Tech to become your god. Learn to put down the iPhone, iPad and laptop. Relearn the lost art of ‘neighboring’ with people. Those connections last a lifetime. Ask us . . .
We’re in the process of becoming a united America again. Yes-men and -women need not apply. We need you to be young men and women of principle.
- Decide what you stand for, and be willing to back it up with good-natured toughness and the willingness to work and practice delayed gratification.
- Keep informing yourselves about issues that really matter, follow your passion and your dreams, and put those older than you to shame as they sit, consuming, waiting . . . Decide what are your convictions, your core values; then stand on and for them.
- Lead! Stop following those who shout at you and promise you things to run after them. They’re fluff and calf slobber, unworthy of your attention.
Thanks, Stand-outs, for making ‘non-traditional’ work. Thanks for keeping at it until you find what’s going to work best for you. Above all, thank you for beginning a return to conservative thinking and renewed spiritual values. You’re doing our hearts good.
We Boomers are proud of you.
You are full of unshaped dreams… You are laden with beginning …There is hope in you. ~Lola Ridge
© D. Dean Boone, June 2016