Response to Indictment of Millennial Knowledge of History
First of all, it is important to note that I am not a Millennial. I'm a little bit older. I suppose I would be Generation X. Or on the cusp of whatever came after Generation X.
Secondly, I cannot believe that I am being put in the position of having to defend these waxed-bearded, skinny jeans wearing, fucking Millennial pukes. I wanted to write my post about something awesome like food…or the border wall argument.
But, I was reading an article today written by Michael Knowles as an opinion piece on the Fox News website. Now, it is also important to note that I consider myself to be a conservative in most cases. But, this article, entitled Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, The Voice of an Ignorant Generation, shows a lot of statistics that decries the woeful level of awareness exhibited by most Millennials polled.
Among the statistics cited, is a statement that “one third of Millennials believe George W Bush killed more people than Joseph Stalin.” It goes on to say that over “40% of Millennials have never heard of Mao Zedong. Two-thirds of Millennials cannot identify Auschwitz and 22% have never heard of the Holocaust.”
If true, that shit is alarming. But, at the same time, I was a little pissed at the author for going in on the Millennials like he did without considering WHY shit is the way it is with those poor buffoons living in their parents’ basement.
Let's look at that a little closer. While I will be the first one to talk mad shit on Millennials for being too touchy-feely...oh, and they are WAY too fucking in touch with their feelings...I cannot lay their ignorance about certain topics at their carefully manicured feet.
Where did you gain your knowledge of Stalin and World War II? I learned the basics in school. But, the majority of my knowledge about the War came from my Grandfather. He was drafted into the Army and served during WWII. My father made sure we were exposed to the ins and outs of that particular war due to the close family connection.
Ok now, let me ask you this. If you are in your 40’s, how much do you know about WWI? World War One was an extremely complex and convoluted conflict that largely destroyed an empirical structure that had been around for generations. Among those empires destroyed during WWI was the actual, no-shit, last vestiges of the old Roman Empire.
NO Shit!! Hail Caesar and whatnot. Yeah them!!
So, how much do you know? Not much right? Do you have any idea who the leader of the German Empire was? Do you know why the allies won the war when the German army never actually lost a battle?
Probably not. Why? Because your public school education, like mine, hit the high points and moved on. And, being so far removed from the war there was little reason to research it.
Three generations removed from WWI and all of the particulars have been lost from the collective base of knowledge.
Now, let’s reexamine the Millennials. Three generations removed from WWII. They don’t know anything about it other than Hitler was a bad dude and someone sank some ships over by Hawaii.
Isn't this generation of young voters among the first to be the products of the common core education system? Isn't this generation of young voters used to relying on Google for nearly every factoid and bit of functional knowledge needed in a given situation?
So, common core! (check-the-box, teaching-to-the-test, never-taught-how-to-write-a-term-paper, only-use-libraries-for-the-free-wifi, think-microfiche-is-something-served-on-steamed-rice) Common Fucking Core education coupled with, most likely, zero personal connection to World War II equals little to no working knowledge.
It’s a generational thing and an education thing...not really a lack of interest thing. And if Michael Knowles had given it a smidgen of thought he would have pieced that together.