Sunday, 1 July 2012

Generation: Fucked

Throughout modern history since the "Teenager" developed its own sense of style, rebellion and lucrative demographic, every generation has fought with their parents, claiming how much harder their lives are compared to that of their elders crying "you just don't understand how different it is." This being said however the current generation of Under 25's have it rough and will continue to be on the receiving end of a particularly raw deal, housing benefits being cut for this age group leaving graduates to graduate and to be left in the wilderness with record debt. I argue however, that this isn't the first time our generation has faced the brunt of a politically motivated attack, rather my generation should be nothing but used to this by now.

Being a "strange" 13 year old boy, I'd listen to the news, read The Mirror my dad brought back from work an all in all enjoy finding out about the world of politics, until i noticed something, the emergence of the demonising of "chav" and "hoodie" culture, basically saying that teenager + hood = stab wound and nicking your wallet. Of course it was the education system that came under attack for it, saying we should be harder on this particular generation of deviants. As I said previously, I was 13, school is a bloody hard place for anyone of that age no matter how "hard" you want to come down on a generation and being at a year 7-9  that took itself ridiculously seriously you hardly had any room to breathe at all let alone room to be come down harder on. But no, those who have no experience of being in such a school learning the SAT curriculum wanted it to be harder. I'd forgive them and label my angst as immature and fitting in with the age old argument as a teen and then evolving past that and realising that its the same for everyone, if it wasn't for the trend i noticed to emerge...

Anticipating the results for my SATs I turned on the radio, "Are SATs too easy?" No i replied and thought nothing of it. Two years later, it was GCSE's and the same radio headlines and of course the consensus in both of these arguments were "of course they are too easy." Another two years A-Levels were the target and I'd had enough of our generations achievements being belittled at every f***ing turn by the opposition to government and the press. And of course over these seven years of secondary education our generation were perceived as criminals and deviants and such. Again, from this stand point of writing i might just sound like an angry teenager and again I'd  acknowledge, the problem being, this hasn't stopped past us growing into adults and people who lambasted us for the past decades are still making attacks on our generation.

We get to university and the press explode attacking ex-polytechnics and "mickey mouse degrees," tarring us all as lay about spongers from the loans we have to get to survive living at university. I understand these criticisms and some degrees aren't worth the paper their certified on, but at the same time you can't simply attack the entire thing without looking at the merits. It was here we thought we could accomplish something, some real change and most of us did it by voting for the Lib Dems (idiots they were as i said prior to the election but never mind) because many of us thought they were representing us against those who didn't have clue about us, but then one sniff of power and they make it worse for us than it ever has been. Not only now have our generation been politically attacked, but now we're also an ideological Atlas, our generation is the down and kicked of Cameron's Britain, all job prospects taken away and essentially turned into the debt pack-mules of DC's cuts, no hope, no money and we're labelled as the age group that's suffocating the country. Sat in a lecture theatre studying politics and trying to make head nor tails of why we are being continually treated like this a careers advisor reminds me that my degree entitles me to apply for a store managers job at Morrisons. 3 years studying the machinations of the political system and I can look forward to such a fulfilling and satisfying job of making sure some cretin has displayed the bananas correctly.

And then we graduate into a situation where there is literally next to nothing left for us. Not only has the political system victimised, patronised and vilified my generation, they've also abandoned us too. Using us to prove a point and then leaving us by the wayside with nothing to go for. "Oh but Dan, if you want to make something of yourself you have to go out  and do it for yourself!" I'm aware of this, but the people telling me this are those who experienced the boom of the Blair years and the victories of the minimum wage instead of some etonian actively recreating Dickens's Britain and continually moving the f***ing goal posts at every given chance. So go on and take our housing benefits, make it impossible for us to move into our own places, and make us completely unable to spend by either taking every job from us bar being the feudal knights in charge of the peasants of Morrisons or leaving us on the dole in our parents homes whilst they struggle to make ends meet too. And if the UN's recent report on drugs is true, there'll be a continuing boost to offset the misery that your causing my generation, surely that's not going to "build a better Britain?" After all, most of us gave up at Nick Clegg.