Hundreds of years ago, man chose to domesticate dogs for pets and companions. Dogs were gradually – and deliberately – bred to become life-long ‘playful puppies’ with the ‘boring’ qualities adult animals needed in the wild banished in place of a ‘cute’ lifelong passion for playing with toys and pleasing their masters. Unwittingly, the same thing appears to happened to people. Which far off dictatorship can be responsible for such ghastly social engineering I hear you gasp? Ladies and gentlemen, it has happened under your noses to your own children.
A few years ago I strongly believed the concept of a “generation gap” was something consigned to the past….. at 25 I could relate completely to most 35 years old and to most 15 year olds, everyone seemed much the same in a social sense. Of course there were differences and obvious levels of maturity but, for the most part, there were no serious issues – no lifestyle incompatibility, no cultural issues. Everyone could work together, socialise together and all much ‘on the same level’. If you got into the pub ‘under age’ you acted like an adult and mixed like an adult, when you started work the same applied.
Somewhere in the past 10 years or so, things have gone sadly wrong. Though the ghosts of narcissism and immaturity cloud many of those born before this date, through my own experience I would earmark the approximate date of birth as being circa 1988 of those who appear to behave, to think and to act in ways alien to those born earlier. Though certainly not wishing to tar everyone under 24 with the same proverbial brush, this failure of a large number of people to embrace the concept of ‘growing up’ can be put down to a number of contributory factors.
Firstly, the education system – and the changes seen in by the New Labour government – has to shoulder much of the blame. Whilst some changes in education are laudable – the trend towards true accountability for the performance of every pupil being one – the drive towards training children to perform well in exams instead of learning is responsible for a generation of no-nothing half-wits unable to write cognitively, to spell anywhere near correctly or equip themselves with a reasonable degree of useful knowledge (general or otherwise), whilst still arming themselves with GCSE’s, A-Levels and stupidly expensive University Degrees.
Secondly the change in media has to be factored in – from the sudden widespread growth in internet usage circa 1999/2000 and the joint tidal wave around the same of (extremely) high profile trash ‘reality’ tv and Murdochisation of the press, media and populist politics when everything – and as we can see everyone – was ‘dumbed down’, spoon-fed ‘lowest common deniminator’ so-called news, bringing everything down to the level of – seriously – a pre-1990 John Craven’s Newsround under the auspices of adult information and education. Post-2000 we find ourselves spoken to like children in a Junior School assembly.
Thirdly, whilst the change in education has negated the need to truly ‘learn’, the manifestation of the ‘Nanny State’ has literally cancelled out the need to ‘grow up’. Many of us old and wise enough to remember life before the time when half-wits demanded to see ID to serve greying 30-somethings a packet of cigarettes at the local 7-11 can remember the elicit experience of underage pubbing and clubbing. As underage drinkers most of us made a concerted effort to behave like adults (to a degree of course)… now I’m not encouraging underage binge drinking in any way, shape or form but this desire to ‘act like young adults’ also applied to the workplace. Nowadays the instillation of the “Proof of ID” culture has bequeathed us a generation of 20-something children, reluctant to take on the weight of adulthood in an appallingly adolescent manner — emotional cripples who still unashamedly refer to their mothers as “Mummy”, who study and work only in specific ‘roles’ unable to ‘think’ for themselves without being cajoled and instructed and who seem, to those over the age of 24, to be almost retarded in their puppy-dog approach to life – one only has to befriend people on Facebook to be swept away in a sea of child-like over-enthusiasm and narcissistic self-centredness previously the domain of annoying 12 year olds. Not wishing to alarm anyone (well, I am actually) but these ‘Big Kids’ are now having babies of their own – and adopting the same childlike semi-responsible approach to parenthood including the utterly banal and crazy ‘need’ to express at every possible moment their unconditional love for said offspring to anyone and everyone – as if not telling everyone how much you ‘love’ your kids every waking moment makes you a neglectful disgrace unfit parent.
Now if everything was simple and this meant everybody became (in time) ‘shiny happy people’ this wouldn’t be so bad… the bad news is the uniform childishness of a majority of people is masking a mental timebomb that will result (nay, already resulting) in some serious damage to society and our future.
More to follow on why this degradation of adulthood has been tailored to suit the modern workplace and the nouveau servile society.