GEN Z: Gen Z refuses to bow down to older generations

Chloe Berg
Chloe Berg

The 2020 election has passed and a new president-elect has been announced. This election cycle, many ads and celebrities called for everyone, especially young people, to vote. Voters between the ages of 18 and 29 had an 8% increase in participation compared to 2016, according to the Tufts University’s Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE).

These voters preferred Joe Biden over Donald Trump. This preference was very crucial in battleground states. According to CIRCLE, in Michigan, 62% of this age group supported Biden, which is an estimated 194,000 votes. Young people of color supported Biden in majorities between 73% and 87%, highest among Black youth while support among white youth was only a 51% majority.

Analysis from the Brookings Institution showed that 50.7% of U.S. residents are under the age of 40, at least as of July 2019. That equals to about 166 million millennials, Gen Z or younger Americans to about 162 million baby boomers, Gen X and older Americans.

“To many Americans – especially baby boomers themselves – this news may come as a shock. For them, the term ‘millennial’ has been associated with a youthful, often negative, vibe in terms of habits, ideology, and politics,” said William Frey, a Brookings senior fellow.

Younger generation’s disdain for older, more conservative mentalities is typified by the “OK boomer” catchphrase, as the retort is generally meant to signal humorous mocking and dismissal of the other person as out of touch and stuck in their ways.

Gen Z’s refusal to bow down to older generations, especially those in power, can be displayed in the 300% rise in streams of rappers YG and Nipsey Hussle’s “FDT” on Saturday. The 2016 song also hit No. 1 on iTunes shortly after Biden’s victory.

Chloe Berg is a Leavenworth native and student at Benedictine College.