It’s a common scenario: people from the older generation looking down and complaining about how incompetent and terrible the newer generations are. How “back in my day” it was so much better.
Let’s be real, all older generations have acted this way, whether you lived in the 1900’s or you’re in 2018. It’s always comments and rants about how terrible the current generation is; a never-ending cycle of complaints without clear solutions.
I think that cycle stops with our generation. A lot of times our batch can be mistakenly considered as Millennials, but we’re not. We’re an entirely different generation—Generation Z.
Generation Z has a special trait that makes it very different from all the previous generations: Open-mindedness. We are a generation who was raised by internet culture; a generation whose cultural barriers have been broken down and see other cultures and people more equal than previous generations. We see people as they are, and we don’t learn more into stereotypes. We are a generation that is inclusive, and we are much more adaptable to change and to things that are ‘different’.
We will not be a generation that looks down to the generation after us.
If there’s anything that previous generations can and should learn from our generation, it’s the gift of open-mindedness. Personally, in the adults around me, there’s an obvious cultural bias in their heads. A lot of stereotypes—moments where they make fun of other cultures and see no problem with doing so. I don’t blame them much for this though; it’s the influence of their environment and generation. In a way, they don’t have much control over this unless they’re actually aware of it.
However, I believe being culturally intolerant and being narrow-minded is a personal hindrance. These traits deal heavily with inappropriate and unnecessary mindsets and stereotypes which do nothing but exclude other people from their circle. I believe there is no benefit to doing this whatsoever.
Open-mindedness is the gift bestowed upon our generation, and with the previous generation being somewhat close minded about these things there might only be one way for them to adopt this behavior: if we teach it to them ourselves.
Vanmarc Montero | BA (Hons) Business Management