oh lord, as a tail-end genX/xennial (cringe), i kind of don’t want to tackle this one, but as part of meme monday, i thought it might be apropos of the current climate we’re struggling with.
plus, i feel like “ok boomer” is sort of something genX might get behind, in a sort of “whatever” eye roll, cynical way. i liken ok boomer to my version of “you do you”: i have laid out everything that might be wrong with this decision you want to partake in, and you’re going to do it anyway. you do you.
ok, a few things to go over before we dive into the proverbial hornets nest.
- silent generation (of great depression era): 1928-45 (my dad is in this gen)
- baby boomer (of ok boomer): 1946-64 (my mom is in this gen)
- genX: 1965-1980 (i am in this gen)
- millennials: 1981-1996 (all my sibs are in this gen)
- genZ: 1997-present
(just a note: please stop calling everyone under 25 a millennial. millennials are 24-38 for crying out loud. the majority of them are in their 30s and some nearing 40.)
here’s how ok boomer started: an older man was in a video in which he said, “millennials and Generation Z have the Peter Pan syndrome, they don’t ever want to grow up; they think that the Utopian ideals that they have in their youth are somehow going to translate into adulthood”. in early april, the phrase ok boomer started in reaction to this as a retaliation and criticism of baby boomer-shaped politics, economics and the environment policies.
the big thing about ok boomer is that genZ is fed up with baby boomers and their views on racism, climate change, technology, the economic state, pulling yourself up by your bootstraps, etc. and that millennials and genX should be right on board with them in the disgust. or genX (the forgotten generation) would be on the sidelines watching the fight, eating popcorn (maybe with the silent generation).
“The older generations grew up with a certain mind-set, and we have a different perspective,” Ms. O’Connor said. “A lot of them don’t believe in climate change or don’t believe people can get jobs with dyed hair, and a lot of them are stubborn in that view. Teenagers just respond, ‘Ok, boomer.’ It’s like, we’ll prove you wrong, we’re still going to be successful because the world is changing.” (source)
but here’s the problem with this ok boomer generalization: no matter what generation you’re in, there are idiosyncrasies. my mom is the furthest thing from a racist or climate change denier, and she’s a boomer. the majority of genZ guys at my school to get a trades degree are trump voters. the top end of genX is mid-50s and is most likely economically stable and won’t understand this whole avocado toast/home loan thing. millennials are in their 30s and have responsibilities just like everyone else. (meanwhile, you do realize everyone is burnt out?)
i think anyone can be on either end of the ok boomer meme. my mom could walk into the welding lab and say “ok boomer” to the dude wearing a trump hat, and it would fit. it’s just that looking at generalizations of each generation, that’s where it falls.
of course, the baby boomers have taken great offense to this, saying it’s ageism and denigrating. to which i say, check yoself. you were the ones crying about how awful millennials are for not buying your superlarge homes and getting joy from owning plants. eyeroll*. (*classic genX!)
i’m not sure where to take this from here. i do have to react to the original older gentleman in the video about growing up, because who really wants to grow up? and what is wrong with bring a few childlike fancies into the world as an adult? sure makes it less boring, more inviting, and kind of fun^. but if this ok boomer craze is the start of something that will effect some change, i guess it might be ok.** i’m going to stick with you do you.
^ whoa, there’s the xennial in me peeking out!
**back to classic genX hahaha