Taking responsibility

My husband and I are watching Star Trek: The Next Generation. There is a two-part episode where Captain Picard is transformed into a Borg; this episode is apparently the best two-part episode in the history of television (pretty much a direct quote from my husband). Part of this episode (or an episode around that one, we're watching them in succession on Netflix so I get confused) includes a young woman who aspires to be Picard's next Number One, she goes over Riker's head and attempts all sorts of feats to prove her worthiness. Riker continually tries to remind her that she has a lot of learning to do.

This episode really reminded me of some of the complaints about the "Millennial" generation. I've heard many negative things about this up-and-coming generation, including that they feel privileged and that each of them thinks they are unique and special. People think that Millennials don't take responsibility for their actions and don't take time to learn how to do things properly.

After the past few weeks I don't think this is just a problem with young people. It's a problem with a lot of people. I made an appointment for someone, the best available time for the two involved was 9am. I explained this, and got a raised-eyebrow expression when I mentioned 9am ("9am! that's early!"). We had an event this week, along with the arrival of winter weather, and the two crossed paths. The event involved several different people, one showed up on time, one kept calling us to keep us in the loop regarding traveling, and another never bothered to call. We also had an issue in the office that could have turned into some type of teachable moment, the problem is, the people who could have been taught didn't understand.

The above examples do not just include people under the age of 21. It shouldn't be a problem just addressed with young people, but with people as a whole. The question should be: When do we stop giving the benefit of the doubt and hold people accountable? Should 50 year olds be held accountable for checking their email just like we want to hold 18 years olds accountable for showing up on time? When is it a 40-something's responsibility to save the planet, instead of the 19 year olds?

I'm expected to be in my office beginning at 7:30. I take care of numerous animals, chores, and responsibilities in my own personal life, and still make it to work and do my job. I'm close to the Millennial generation's age. It's not a problem with young people, it's a problem with the society in which the young people grew up.


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