Can the Boomers Pass the Baton to the Millennials?

I had been communicating, via Facebook, with a fellow Baby-Boomer, who had been a friend of mine since we were young lads in Philadelphia in the 1950’s. My friend and I, like many people who were born shortly after World War II, are retired. Like many of the retired Boomers, he offers almost daily postings on Facebook related to the good old days of coming of age from the 1950’s through the early 70’s. His postings are usually about his childhood memories, food and restaurant favorites, music trends, politics, and sports (mostly the Phillies), and travel experiences (mostly to the Jersey seashore). The only times he varies from these topics is when he posts pictures of his grandchildren. Although I tolerated following his postings for several years, I ultimately got tired of clicking “Like,” and pretending that I enjoyed reading the limited scope of topics he was writing about. Like many people on social media, when I don’t click Like to their postings with regularity, I begin to become less favored by them and start to receive fewer notices. But, I was okay with that. It is as if the world had stopped for him in 1970 after he graduated from college. Perhaps it did? Like many Boomers, he took a job, got married, had kids and grandchildren, and acquired enough wealth and real estate to retire comfortably in Florida and have time to reminisce about the great old days. To quote the late 60’s song by The Who, he was “Talking about our generation.” The underlying assumption in most of his Facebook postings has been that the Boomers were, are, and will remain the most powerful generation influencing economic and cultural trends during the last several decades and that they will keep the same reins of power and influence for many years to come.

Like many Boomers, I had accepted his conclusions about our long-lasting power of Boomers until I read the May 1, 2016, column, “Shift Coming as Boomers Pass Reins to Millennials” in my hometown newspaper, the Richmond Times-Dispatch. In their article, Christopher Lee, CEO of CEL, a Los Angeles real estate broker, argued that “A huge generational shift is about to take place from aging baby boomers to soon-to-be-in charge millennial…” This and other later articles  I read to increase my awareness of what these changes will mean for me and my Boomer friends are adamant, and undeniably correct in their assumptions, i.e., millennials will dislodge the once secure reins of our economic, cultural, political influence in the world. Therefore, to help Boomers become more informed about what changes we may or may not live long enough to see in the years to come, I thought that I should write some columns on this subject on my Blog.

The first of which you see here frames my discussion. My follow-up Blogs, which will be forthcoming, will define the Millennials and discuss what types of changes the passing of the reins of power will have on society-including to the Boomers. I will focus on those shifts that are already beginning to take. For example, I will comment on how Millennials spend their money, enjoy leisure time, view entertainment, receive news information, are involved in politics, and take part in religion. Most related to my stated focus in Litchatte.com, is how they are changing the ways that they take part in reading and writing literature, and how they communicate with each other and with the Boomers and other generational groups.

dino2

Speaking of communications, when I tried to convey my awareness that “Boomers would soon be as extinct as dinosaurs” to my retired, nostalgic, and once boyhood friend in Florida, he immediately “Unfriended” me on Facebook. Perhaps I should have chosen other words to convey the stark reality of the powerful loss of power that our generation will relinquish. I am looking forward to seeing what will happen. I am hoping that the changes will be more positive than disruptive. After all, I do have three daughters in the 20 to 30-year-old age group. Although none of my three wonderful daughters have children yet, I look forward to one day seeing them post pictures of my grandchildren on whatever social media sites they may use. I promise that I will not bore my readers with posting their wonderful images on my Facebook or Litchatte.com site— unless, of course, you ask me to see them.

############################################################################################################################

Murray Ellison received a Master’s in Education (1973) and in English Literature (2015). He earned a Doctorate in Education in 1987. He is married and has three adult employed daughters. He retired as the Virginia Director of Community Corrections for the Department of Correctional Education in 2009. Currently, he serves as a literature teacher, board member, and curriculum advisor for the Lifelong Learning Institute in Chesterfield, Virginia, and the founder and chief editor of the literary blog, www.LitChatte.com. He is an editor for the “Correctional Education Magazine,” and editing a book of poetry written by an Indian mystic. He also serves as a board member and occasional volunteer tour guide, poetry judge, and all-around helper at the Edgar Allan Poe Museum in Richmond Virginia. You can write to Murray by leaving a Comment on this Blog, or at ellisonms2@vcu.edu. You can also receive automatic postings from www.Litchatte.com by submitting your email in the tab to the right of this blog.

Murray Ellison at the Poe Museum
Murray  at the Poe Museum

 

Please follow and like us:
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Related posts

2 Thoughts to “Can the Boomers Pass the Baton to the Millennials?”

  1. Some truly rattling work on behalf of the owner of this web site,
    dead great articles.

    1. Thanks from the Grateful Dead man.
      Murray Ellison

Leave a Reply