It is notable that age groups tend to share similar political and world views. As well, different generations tend to have trouble agreeing on many issues relevant in the world. Unfortunately, these differences are inevitable and will most likely never truly diminish, but one habit especially seems to bring generations further from unity and closer to division.
The issue that seems to further divide individuals of different age is the prominent and frankly quite immature practice of name-calling. It has been a steady trend to refer to older generations as “boomers,” as a form of insult. Though Generations Y and Z were criticized greatly by elder generations, children and young adults are not the only individuals guilty of using ageist terms to rattle opposing sides within argument.
Though it is apparent that every generation holds this immature habit, adults today should reflect a great deal on this growing, childish practice. Moreover, older generations should consider their own actions when examining the noticable conflict that rises with them and today’s youth.
While no one can speak for an entire generation, it is a fair consensus that the growing use of the term “snowflake,” most often directed towards youth by elder generations, is not appreciated. The term tends to be used by more conservative individuals, directed to individuals with more liberal standpoints and is used to imply that the term’s recipient believes that they are special compared to those around them. Like most terms made to offend specific age or political groups, (in this case both simultaneously) this is not much more than a lazy attempt to bring one down for disagreeing on a political or societal matter.
Calling a young adult a snowflake not only takes away from true argument, but is ineffective and influences younger generations to reciprocate by coming up with terms and phrases equal, such as the infamous boomer meme. Though argument is not a first option for most, argument is an important and beneficial part of creating the much needed unity and improvement of society as a whole. This being said, is the point of argument not to influence? To speak truthfully on behalf of the majority of generations Y and Z, insulting someone to belittle their opinions is the worst way to argue, if it can even be considered argument at all.
While all generations are indeed guilty of habits like insulting or name-calling during argument, older generations doing this seems far more out of place, especially since it is generally seen as childish. More importantly, older generations are still influential when it comes to the habits and trends of the youth. It is unreasonable to take offense when a child or young adult calls an adult a boomer, when they were most likely influenced to do so by the countless insults directed towards them by their elders for years prior.
If anything, one is decreasing the chances of an opposing group siding with them on any stance by verbally attacking them. The term snowflake in itself is also hypocritical considering it is used to criticize one for feeling as though they are special, when it would likely not be a term spoken by those who use it if they felt any differently about themselves. It would be unjust to ignore the similar remarks made by youth, but older generations setting such an example for those of younger age is undoubtly a significant part of the conflict between each side.
In short terms, so-called snowflakes are not coming closer to siding with those who call them such. The practice of belittling youth for having views that differ from those of adults should also be looked down upon gravely. As said before, this creates an eye-for-eye ideal, influencing youth to make similar choices, but it also intends to prevent young minds from forming their own opinions, which is possibly the biggest shame of all.
Every individual has a voice, and this voice should not be silenced because of age, no matter what age that may be. Though a harsh reality, elders will continue to receive generalized and ageist comments as long as they do the same to set example for those younger than them. This is not an attack on adults, but some simple insight from an individual who sees the faults of each side.
Generations will never completely agree, but it is in fair reason to say that generations have the ability to show respect for one another. This undeniably starts with older generations, who are truly the most influential of all.