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Millennials: The revolutionary face of change

Hannah Waldrup

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Days go by and seasons come and go, but can people never change? As of today and the birth of the 21st century, change is a welcomed ideal that just comes naturally to “millennials” (a person reaching young adulthood around the year 2000). It’s an ideal so revolutionary, it’s influenced every day events, news outlets, politics, society, values, customs, and morals.

The White House was lit with rainbow colors as a symbol of Gay Pride when gay marriage became legalized. | photo by creative commons

The White House was lit with rainbow colors as a symbol of Gay Pride when gay marriage became legalized. | photo by creative commons

On June 26th, 2015, the whole nation witnessed the most earth-shattering event ever in American history. The United States Supreme Court ruled in Obergefell v. Hodges that state-level bans on same-sex marriage are unconstitutional. The event was so widely discussed among American people that it created a massive, nationwide acceptance of the LGBT community.

“I remember when they legalized gay marriage, I cried hysterically”, said Lexi Davis, a member of the STRIDE club at Reynolds. “I’m so glad Reynolds has expressed their acceptance of the community enough to create a club. It makes me feel like I can really fit in here,” added Davis.

 

However, millennials were put to the ultimate test when the time came to face the ugly truth about police brutality on August 9th, 2014. An unarmed African American teenager was shot by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri and an outbreak of riots across America rose. Police brutality is no stranger to the previous generation of  “baby boomers,” who grew up during the Civil Rights era, but history is repeating itself and millennials are taking even further action with the Black Lives Matter movement. This movement is so deeply connected to the Black Panther Party (which was founded in 1966), that it made its public debut across schools, streets, the news, and even a performance by Beyonce’ at the Super Bowl this year.

A performance held by Beyonce' at the 2016 Superbowl with black panther styled costumes. | photo by creative commons

A performance held by Beyonce’ at the 2016 Superbowl with black panther styled costumes. | photo by creative commons

 

“This movement will create change, a change that we want to see in this world,” said Antonio Bird, a member of the Black Lives Matter club. “It’s about equality for everyone.”

 

As time goes by, mother earth deteriorates and not at a slow, steady rate either. The continents are growing warmer each year due to a phenomenon known as “global warming.” Global warming is the term used to describe an increase in the average temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere and its oceans, a change that is believed to be permanently changing the Earth’s climate. What can be done about this issue? A helpful strategy called “recycling” is being used nationwide to dispose of things that can be used over and over again (aka; the term ‘recycle’).

 

However, recycling isn’t foreign to Americans. There’s plenty of other ways millennials have contributed to the environment such as the creation of environmentally-friendly technology, cars, clothes, and more. Millennials have advanced greatly in preserving the earth compared to “baby boomers.”  41% of baby boomers said they would refuse on paying more for a more eco-friendly product compared to millennials at 46% that are willing.

An electric car is found charging alongside a street in the US | photo by creative commons

An electric car is found charging alongside a street in the US | photo by creative commons

All in all, this isn’t a competition between millennials and baby-boomers to see who is better. It’s simply a comparison and a statement all in one. Millennials are portraying a statement of change; a vast change compared to previous generations. No, they are not better, but they are the face of a brighter, greener, more equal future. Millennials are advancing and demolishing this idealism of what’s considered “taboo”, whether previous generations like it or not. Millennials are the proof that change is acceptable because without change, we wouldn’t be moving forward.

We simply cannot be trees and stay rooted where we came from. We are humans. Eating, breathing, sleeping, walking humans who have two feet in front of them that can carry them forward. Progression, my friends, is what we aim for, so use those two feet and carry on.

 

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Millennials: The revolutionary face of change