Much has been written about the millennial generation – entitled, coddled, lazy, and self-absorbed. While some may agree with those descriptions, I do not. Let me begin by saying, I have 3 children, 8 nieces and nephews, and dozens of clients and friends who qualify as millennials.
Overwhelmingly, you are compassionate, have a global perspective, and a progressive outlook. And had Millennials been in charge of electing the next President, Hillary Clinton would have won the presidency by a landslide.
I am not writing to tell you who you should have voted for or to express any personal views; I am making a generational observation.
You are a generation of young women and men who were raised in a country much more diverse than your parents’ generation. You choose and remain loyal to your friends, regardless of their race, religion, or sexual orientation. You are “PC” because you’re informed and compassionate. Many of you were fortunate to grow up in communities so diverse that the depth of bigotry, hatred, and disenchantment that you saw during this presidential campaign was unfathomable.
And then, Trump won.
Your hope for another four years of social and environmental progress was shattered Tuesday night.
Many of you are protesting, some in the streets, others on social media. You have been told to just accept it and see how things play out. You have even been called sore losers.
Your protests are not because you lost; they are in support of your friends and family. You are angry and scared for them, and for yourself, and are searching for productive outlets for your anxious energy. I strongly believe that the passion and love behind your posts, signs, and marches is fuel for our future. Our greatest future leaders are amongst you.
Let me remind you that progress is not linear. Your most formative political years have been Obama’s eight-year presidency. From social justice and environmental standpoints, progress was rapid and substantial. It appears that many felt it was too much, too soon.
Our country may need a pause. We may need to take a collective breath and allow others to “catch up” to our societal shift. The country may even take a step back or two, or circle around a bit, before taking further steps forward. This is the normal course of progress and where your energy is needed. This is where your open minds, intellect, passion, and community can yield great results.
Ways to get involved – really involved:
· Don’t just write your congressmen, call them and express your concerns to a staffer.
· Attend congressional town halls.
· Don’t just donate to an organization you believe in, volunteer or serve on a committee.
· Create opportunities to unite your community.
· Step outside your circle of influence and solicit a differing perspective.
· Seek opportunities for further engagement and growth in an area you are particularly passionate about.
With patience and persistence, we will continue to move forward together. Keep talking, hugging, embracing, striving, learning, listening, and compromising. We are depending on you and I truly believe: Millennials, you’ve got America’s back!
Live well/Be well