Every now and then someone from the adult world stirs themselves to study kids, and finds out what we all knew: adults and children live in different realities.
You know how at this blog we always talk about multiple factors being considered at one time, as if it were an essential cognitive tool? Check this:
1. Kids are clueless in certain ways
2. Adults are oblivious to certain things they must endure
3. Kids are aware in ways adults are not
4. Adult experience brings an awareness kids cannot have.
All four are true — at the same time — which doesn’t invalidate either experience, but points us to where we should look.
A surprising number of teenagers — nearly 15 percent — think they’re going to die young, leading many to drug use, suicide attempts and other unsafe behavior, new research suggests.
The study, based on a survey of more than 20,000 kids, challenges conventional wisdom that says teens engage in risky behavior because they think they’re invulnerable to harm. Instead, a sizable number of teens may take chances “because they feel hopeless and figure that not much is at stake,” said study author Dr. Iris Borowsky, a researcher at the University of Minnesota.
Well, no kidding.
Our species cannot decide whether global warming will kill us or not happen at all.
Our species is tolerant of its criminals, parasites, etc. but never fails to go out of its way to bash down the one who rises above the crowd.
Our culture is garbage. Madonna, Michael Jackson? You’re kidding, right.
Our leaders are whores and the voters are even dumber whores who are content to be led with lies, because they cannot face difficult or complex truths.
Our media is full of fears, our leaders control us with fears, and worst of all, everyone around us appears oblivious to long-standing problems in our society — environment, racial conflict, crime, corruption — because these aren’t polite to mention.
Humanity has slipped into its own world, a world ruled by social devices and the avoidance of conflict, and as a result, cannot face reality.
Kids see this, because it’s new to them and they’re very afraid of these adult things they see coming down the pipe.
Adults survive by making polite commentary and ignoring problems, even though they have to know that eventually this mess will blow up in their faces… or in someone’s face, at least, because in fifty years these adults will be dead or on their way, and at that point, why should they care? (Obviously I disagree.)
So on to the next shocker:
American adults from young to old disagree increasingly today on social values ranging from religion to relationships, creating the largest generation gap since divisions 40 years ago over Vietnam, civil rights and women’s liberation.
A survey being released Monday by the Pew Research Center highlights a widening age divide after last November’s election, when 18- to 29-year-olds voted for Democrat Barack Obama by a 2-to-1 ratio.
Almost eight in 10 people believe there is a major difference in the point of view of younger people and older people today, according to the independent public opinion research group. That is the highest spread since 1969, when about 74 percent reported major differences in an era of generational conflicts over the Vietnam War and civil and women’s rights. In contrast, just 60 percent in 1979 saw a generation gap.
Remember how above I said all four factors were true at one? Kids are clueless about life and adults are oblivious to some things kids see, but kids are also inexperienced, where adult experience can be useful.
One of the biggest confusions we have is that kids are really good at spotting the elephant in the room, but their solutions are amateurish. Inexperienced, they tend to defend the individual, because they interpret the world personally. “It’s trying to get me,” they think, because they’ve been raised at the center of their own universe by their parents, and now they’re having to adapt to the fact the world doesn’t care. It just does what it does, and if you get snared, oh well!
So now adults and kids not only exist in two different realities, but are heading toward different polarized political views, one of which is liberal and one of which is reactionary.
And all these confused people vote.