There’s a ripple going through society, criticising youth for being lazy kids who want something for nothing… but you know what? That same ripple has been going through society since the dawn of time.
Let me set the scene:
Two cave men, long scraggly beards, haggard and worn, old men by thirty, sit by a fire about ten feet in from the entrance to a cave. One of the men, hunched over with hands closer to an apes than a modern mans, grabs a stick from the dusty rock floor and pokes at the embers of an almost extinct log. He grunts, a sound full of disgust, and motions towards the lanky cave youth just outside the dank cave who is carving the first wheel. If we were able to listen in I’m sure his grunts would translate to something along these lines: “Darn kids today, don’t know the value of a well skinned hide. All they want to do is play with them damn rocks when they should be out hunting down mammoths. Lazy no good kids. Why in my day…”
Like I said. People have been complaining about youth since the dawn of time. And why? Because our values change with each generation. People grow and change. And as we get older, we understand less about the things that the next generation values and appreciates. But that doesn’t mean they are any less ambitious or driven than we were. In fact, some of the most amazing people I know are the youth of today.
Young people willing to shave their heads to help raise funds and awareness for Cancer research – youth like Lexi and Sara. Young people willing to walk away from their cushy lives here in Canada and live and learn in Ghana – youth like Corbin. Young people willing to volunteer their time creating opportunities for other young people to find a sense of family in what started as a group of strangers – youth like Derrick and Sara. Young people willing to go into schools and talk about bullying and hate, to help spread a message of hope and acceptance – youth like Sarah. Young people willing to speak out when they see something happening that is wrong or unjust – youth like Mitch. Young people creating amazing pieces of art that has the potential to change the way people view our world or themselves – youth like Zacery and Vincent.
…and that’s only a small handful of the truly amazing young people I know.
The youth of today deserve our respect. Sure, they may do things differently than we did, but that doesn’t devalue their actions or their potential. They are capable of some pretty incredible things. I know I am hugely blessed to be involved in so many incredible young lives – even just as a cheerleader.
The next time you are sitting in your yard, or in your house, and you happen to catch a glimpse of a young person doing something that you may not value yourself… think for a second. They may just be about to create their generations “wheel”.