Who Best Represents the Baby Boomer Generation? Or, Who Can We Blame for this Mess?
I've always prided myself on being a "Baby Boomer." But, when I actually thought about it. I asked myself why?
As "Baby Boomers," being born between 1946 and 1964, we came of age during a time of great social and economic change.
Everything our fathers had fought to protect was being challenged -- by us -- their very own offspring.
Granted, there were plenty of inequalities to be addressed. There still are.
But, how did the "Greatest Generation" spawn a nation of malcontents?
Hadn't they assured our opportunity to realize the "American Dream?"
What was our problem?
How did the initial members of our demographic, best known for demonstrations, free love, and widespread drug abuse, evolve into the latter, which prides itself on the acquisition of wealth, while fine-turning political corruption, and maintaining widespread drug abuse?
In the end, how will history record our contributions to society? I guess that will be left up to the historical revisionists, who probably haven't even been born, yet.
Interestingly enough, a collection of famous Baby Boomers, including songwriters, actors, astronauts, feminists, athletes, scientists, and entrepreneurs, were recently interviewed for a television program that had them recall their upbringing and what led them to their chosen occupations. It aired on PBS.
I took notes while watching the program. I was interested in seeing if there was a particular theme that ran through their life experiences and eventual career choices. There was.
Without fail, each mentioned the impact that their parent's had upon their life choices. So, there you have it. It's the Greatest Generation's fault for the mess we're in today. It's comforting to know. I sleep much better now. The tremendous amount of guilt I've been carrying around has been transferred to my parents.
But, is that really a fair assumption? Shouldn't we, as Baby Boomers, take some responsibility?
Of course. However, I'm not going to take the fall alone.
As members of a demographic referred to as "The Generation that Changed the World," who can we collectively blame for our current situation? Who will be remembered as the spokesperson for our generation?
Bob Dylan, who doesn't technically qualify as a Baby Boomer, is most often referred to as the spokesman for our generation. We've been perpetuating that myth for quite some time.
So, if we rule him out, who do we have to choose from?
Ironically, when I Googled "Famous Baby Boomers," one entry prefaced its selections by saying it was a little hesitant to post a listing.
"Frankly," it reads. "Some of our more famous peers embarrass us."
As a result, they listed them in alphabetical order. The list was compiled by "Baby Boomer HeadQuarters."
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bill Clinton, John Belushi, Jimmy Buffett, George W. and Jeb Bush, David Cassidy, Hillary Clinton, Alice Cooper, Fabio, Bill Gates, Al Gore, Tom Hanks, Sean Hannity, Patty Hearst, and Barack Obama, just to name a few. And, yes, Donald Trump was included, too.
Of that list, Tom Hanks has my vote. I first thought of John Belushi, but I ruled him out for being a poor role model, although he's probably the most representative of the generation. Dying from a drug overdose looks bad on a resume.
My first runner-up would be Jimmy Buffett. Who wouldn't want to honor a guy who points out that "It's "Five O'Clock Somewhere."
I would. Actually, I do.
Who would you consider the spokesperson for the Baby Boomer generation? Who best represents us?
Better, yet, who can we blame?