Like many other youths living in Indiana, I often hear adults describe the new generation as “too soft” or “thin-skinned” when approached with oppressive language, actions, or even laws. Though I may be biased as someone of said generation, I feel as though we are the exact opposite.
For instance, some have become entirely desensitized to violence and injustice. A great example of this is how young people reacted to the 2021 January 6th terrorist attack on the US Capitol building by laughing and reducing the elite chaos to nothing but a meme. The same applies to the pandemic, inflation, our recent presidents, the ban on abortion, and climate change. Some describe this use of humor as a coping mechanism because it is simply exhausting to be a young person living in America, let alone being a young person belonging to a minoritized community.
On the other hand, some young people are developing zero tolerance for oppression. They chose to pick every battle, ensuring that harm in any way, shape, or form is met with a force of resistance. It is these passionate and driven human beings who end up being labeled as “hyper-sensitive” by the very generation that raised them – that raised all of us. Although I am not representative of all youth, I would like to extend my endless gratitude on behalf of young Hoosiers to the adults who sincerely did their best trying to make this world as safe as possible for us. With each protest, each social media campaign, culture change initiative, and call to action, it is necessary to have the support of adults – especially considering the disappointments many of our legislators have proven to be.
– ICADV’s Young Adult Intern