The Generation Gap: The Dark Side

By Tristan Miller-Lammert, Trending Writer

The “Generation Gap” is a thing. One might argue that people born even a few years apart are going to have more unique experiences. If you know someone who is in their 40s, then that person’s reality growing up was different from yours.    

These differences make relating to one another more difficult. It is hard for a person from Generation X to fully understand someone who has developed in a world after 9/11, let’s say. The overall experience of learning and thinking for those people has been separated by at least 20 years of global craziness.

With the “gen gap” being so real and present, it has negatives. It is an arbitrary divider in society. On top of that, just the idea of the gap comes with a great deal of stigma, while in reality people deserve some basic respect regardless of their birth date.

Vanity Fair presents a table representing some of these issues in the article “From Millennials to Boomers…”.  It breaks everything up by generation (i.e. baby-boomers, gen x, millennials), life altering events, lifestyle, and cultural icons.

The table presents one of the problems with the generation gap. The matters that separate generations are mostly uncontrollable. Just because people born before WWII read print newspapers, while millennials read Twitter, does not make either better than the other. Terrorism has been a big deal for Gen. X and onward, but acid and reefer were life-changing for the Baby-Boomers.

All generations live hugely different lifestyles so empathizing is nowhere near easy. Despite such difficulty, a communication breakdown is no reason for resentment.

The Huffington Post also has solid points in “Much Ado About Millennials”. In it, Dr. Lindajoy Rose presents the perspective of those who hire the stereotypically “un-hirable” millennials. It offers insight about how millennials work best and what they expect from a job.

The idea of the gap usually ends up being exclusionary for no reason. The truth is, there is no reason to be mad at any generation. iPhones are just as far out as that trip one may have had almost 50 years ago over in White Lake.

A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, September 13th print edition.

Contact Tristan at


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