March 11, 2008


1987. what happened. twenty-one years ago, there must have been something hella' wrong with the drinking water. or maybe there was something in the air. either way, the generation of young people out there today (between 18 & 21) have some pretty serious priority issues.

No, I am not talking about pop culture icons britney, paris, or lindsay who tend to help portray today's young as having exceptionally belligerent carefree attitudes and lifestyles. But rather, the kid living across the street or stopped beside you at the red light or next in line for some edo. There is such a great underlying basis of a largely indifferent attitude of this next generation that is so far from what we as society demand of people in this demographic.

Cases in Point:

The recent election is a very good indication of how unwilling that closed-minded, apathetic, and too busy and/or important our young people are today. With a 42% voter turnout on March 4, the untapped market of 18-2(4?) year olds could have shown that Conservative Rule is not a requirement for the sustainability of our province's economy. Even with something as unlikely as an NDP majority, the province and industrial wealth would continue to grow. Instead, our lack of ambition just allows for us to be blissfully ignorant and mindless of the goings-on with industry, energy, we know that the economy is strong and the conservatives will maintain the status quo - even if the economy is driving itself regardless of any political involvement at all.

A lot of today's young people that have lived in Edmonton for more than half their lives do not know who their representatives on different political levels. Some couldn't even tell you the difference between an MLA and an MP. This miseducation is such a vital flaw as to the way that the city, the province, the country, and in effect, the world will be impacted in years to come. We can recycle and buy water-saving showerheads and high efficiency lightbulbs within our own lives, but playing our part also requires that we be informed. But seriously, who watches the news when Family Guy is on?? Or Seinfeld...again. The disinterest and desire to take the path of least resistance of our young people is so overwhelming that it's incomprehensible.

So right now I'm saying that a lot of the trouble lies in young apathy and ignorance. The big trouble with this outlook is that this is the generation that is supposed be be making the difference! being the change! We indeed have some pretty amazing people out there that probably could do an okay job of leading a country. CBCs "The Next Great Prime Minister" is testimony to that, not to mention the ever-increasing media attention regarding environmental issues and extreme poverty, and countless ngo groups wanting to make a difference. But even so, a disproportionate amount of young people are making this difference. We have to do more. we have to be more.

Even in engineering, the captain of next year's Concrete Toboggan team couldn't appear to care less as to what he's getting involved with. The captain lacks passion. For next year's concrete toboggan team to be successful, and for the next generation of stewards to Our World alike, there needs to be at least some passion.

If you were born between 1982 and 1986 I have a heck of a lot of confidence in you to make a difference in this world. Born before that? You're either already doing it, or working against that and will be hard-pressed to ever change. Born in 1987 or later? Prove me wrong. Step up and let's see what your really made of.

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