Sunday, June 16, 2013
The Millennial Strikes Back: My Response to the Time Magazine Article Calling Us The Me, Me, Me Generation
As a child i always wondered how society would evolve as my generation became adults. I always pondered in my mind how i would change as a person as I got older. For the longest time i only worked hard at things I wanted and just shunned off everything else because i felt as though it wasn't important. Sometimes i wished my parents would have pushed me a little bit further than they did. I had a conversation with my dad this morning about Freudian psychology, and how i acted as a toddler. I can remember my whole life with a picture in my head from 5 years old on, but before then it becomes a little fuzzy, but he told me today that unlike my sisters, i just did my own thing as a child, i wasn't like anyone else. These ideas lead me to think about my generation. They say we are all about ourselves, but they only say that because they don't understand us, they don't understand me. I care about the well being of others before myself, i'd rather give than take, i'd rather give someone my last dollar to see them smile while i cry tears of joy on the inside, so if you think i'm all about myself because i try to bring about positive change to the human race that hurts your pockets well then so be it, i can change and adapt to anything you throw at me. It might be your money, but this is our world to share, not yours to keep a tight grip on. The tighter you grip the sand of life, the faster it slips away from your grasp, just let it go and watch it settle as it will, let it right itself, let us change our world. IT'S OUR TURN.
I had a conversation with two elder black men tonight while waiting in line at the Borgata Casino Buffet. The gentlemen i spoke to the most was named Columbus, he was 67 year old man. He had a cap on with a nice blue suit with a cordoroy blazer on, and I made a comment about how i liked his suite especially his tie. From then on we got to talking about life. He asked me, "Son, do you know who you are?"
I replied, "I'm Sean Kennedy."
He replied, "I know you who your name, but do you know who you really are?"
I said, "Sir, many people live their whole life trying to figure out who they are, and what their purpose is on this great Earth, and those that do are those that make it in this world. I'm 23 years old, i've found the person i want to be and I strive everyday to try to reach to be that person. I know one day I will succeed, but right now i'm still trying to find myself."
We went on to talk about faith and God. Columbus said, "Son we are all on borrowed time. You need to listen. God has a plan for us all, as long as you never stop believing, and that believing is believing in yourself. Don't ever say you've tried or you'll try because you're already accepting failure by saying the world "try." I am on this Earth to serve the Lord, and everyday i do God's work and that is exactly what I am doing now.
I went on to tell him about this class i took called Religion and Terrorism. I explained my teacher had a doctorate in religion, and he told me the same thing. "We are all on borrowed time. God gave you life now you must use it wisely."
Columbus told me to always follow my heart for it will never tell you wrong because your mind will take you in a million different directions, but your heart will always know whats right, but its your choice to make it happen, to follow your heart and soul.
We ended the conversation when we went our seperate ways to our tables to eat, but he left me with this, "you've given me a better perspective on the younger generation. You've given me the breathe of life again, you've given me that youthful energy back. This life is all about give and take young man, and you've given me something and I hope I have given you wisdom. Remember there's rules and there are laws to this game called life." But, he never told me exactly what they were, i guess he wants me to find out on my own.
By the end of the conversation I stopped talking and all I did was listen. He commented on the fact that my eyes never left his. I told him I was obsessed with eyeballs, and that i can see a man's soul through his eyes to see if he's a real person inside, and he said young man i'll see you again someday and it will be on Wall Street, you have a bright future ahead of you. Columbus owned his own clothing store and said you can always tell something about man by the way he dresses.
I feel like our parents always wanted to give us everything because life wasn't so easy for them. Both of my parents grew up somewhat poor, so they never wanted us, my sisters and I, to live like they did. People always see us as the me, me, me generation, but it's all about how you are raised. As human beings, we do have free thought, but we are also programmable creatures as you can see throughout the history of society all the way up to the present. We, my generation, are the first modern human beings on this Earth, and you've brought us to this point and I am forever grateful for it. We see the mistakes that our elders have made and we want to fix them, but our elders are too worried about their money than seeing us healthy. Governments and business care more about their personal piggy bank and agenda than seeing us live in a better world yet we're the selfish one's. They hide the truth because they feel we aren't worthy or good enough to know it, but you are wrong. We are hungry for the knowledge that you don't learn in college. We are the first generation not to have racism, yet we are the selfish one's. I got a gun pointed to my head in North Philly by a black man while i was at La Salle that i have never told anyone about, but does that mean i should generalized every African American in a negative way, or the time i got my nose broken and split open by two black teenagers on Chew St. at 1 am wanting my wallet, but i left it in the car? This life is all about your name and knowing who you are and not changing for anyone unless its for the betterment of you and humanity. You live, you learn, and you move on. I may have been selfish once, but i live to serve everyone else from here on out.
It's your selfish ways not to change that makes us look selfish. We might have some lazy, over opinionated youth, but what generation in American history did not? All we want is what's right. The elder generation made a broken system that is controlled by the few, while the rest of us scrape around for crumbs from the feast of a few. One day I will take this race to the dinner table and eat from the same plate as you, but there are rules to this game, I know, grind harder, get smarter, don't stop until you reach the top from the bottom and i'll put that on my name ,i'm not in it for the fame.