Millennials — also known as Gen Y — are typically described as those born since the early 80s. And the signposts on this generation's road to maturity have been a somber directory of tragedy shared. The Oklahoma City bombing. Columbine. September 11. The space shuttle disasters. Hurricane Katrina. And now Virginia Tech.
Previous generations of young people have had their allotment of horrors — two world wars, Vietnam, Kent State, the list is long — but no cohort of American youth has ever endured repeated mass catastrophes in the harsh, inescapable glare of a 24/7 media environment.
Those of us in the Baby Boom generation took ourselves far too seriously, aided an abetted by a media that tracked our every whim, turning us into a bunch of insufferable twits. I can see the same thing happening all over again, creating a generation of whiny brats.