Millennials stepping up to be their own greatest generation

Brandon Pettey

Guest Columnist

If you ask someone to describe millennials they are likely to accuse me and my tech-savvy friends of being lazy-entitled-selfie-taking-government dependent-wastes of space. In 2013 a Time Magazine article accused us of being the “Me, Me, Me, Generation.”  They are hardly the only publication to bash our generation.

A 2015 article from ultra-conservative website Breitbart said our generation knows nothing about money or politics, that we would actually elect Stephen Colbert to be president, and that we have an excess of self-esteem. Author David Brooks accuses millennial college students of being “morally inarticulate.” Some critics say we spend too much money while others say we don’t spend enough.

The only thing people seem to agree on is that we are single-handedly destroying the economy.  I hate to disrupt the harmony but I must protest on behalf of my generation, since most are busy updating Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat.

Certainly, the world would be a lot better off with less selfies and more eye contact, but the millennial generation’s contribution to the Hurricane Harvey relief has proven the other accusations to be completely false.

In the wake of the worst storm in years, Texan millennials have gone to great efforts to help each other.  Volunteers have gathered in droves to rescue those impacted by the hurricane.  Thousands lined up in miserable weather to do their part.  Food, water, and money have all been raised to help those in need.  Millennials from all over Texas donated time and money after the hurricane hit.  Bass boats cruising through flooded neighborhoods to pick up those stranded show the relief efforts to be uniquely Texan and many millennials are at the helm.

The outpouring of help proves that when people are in need, millennials come running.  There have been countless stories of strangers coming together like neighbors to share provisions and collectively make it through this difficult time.  College students who already moved to the Houston area for school banded together to make a safe retreat.  After blood blanks in the area were forced to shut down, college students in Monroe, LA lined up to donate blood.  Volunteers have filled 18-wheeler trailers full of clothing and other resources.  Members of our generation have put themselves directly in harm’s way to come to the rescue of others.

The response to Hurricane Harvey has proven that millennials do not deserve the harsh criticism that we often receive.  In fact, we have been proven to be compassionate-hard-working-resourceful-selfless people ready to help people in need.  So, to my fellow millennials I say hold your head high and keep up the good work.  Keep volunteering your time and sending in the donations.

There will always be critics out there and the best way to prove them wrong is to keep putting forth the effort.   History will be on the side of the millennial generation since there will be plenty of selfies for the records.

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