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March 14, 2014

Raising a Nation of Skeptics

Joe Charlebois

The entrance of Millennials into adulthood is intriguing. As currently defined, a millennial is a person between the ages of 18 and 33. As adults, more Millennials are filtering their way into the arena of influencing public policy. Defining them is difficult. They claim to be independent, but in reality they are progressives and libertarians.


According to a recent Pew Research study, those surveyed are detached from tradition. Half of those surveyed consider themselves politically independent, while 29% did not affiliate with any religion. Less than 50% of Millennials described themselves as patriotic. This is a generation that has voted overwhelmingly in favor of President Barack Obama with 66% of the vote in 2008, and 60% in 2012.


Although the study clearly shows this group favoring the expansion of government programs, their attitudes toward social issues and constitutional matters differs little from the older generations. Looking through the data from this study one could easily describe Millennials’ skepticism through the eyes of a libertarian.


Over the past decade, many Millennials have protested against what they see as a corrupt economic system in the United States. What Millennials should know is that is what they fight is “crony capitalism” – that is the abuse of power that rewards contributors and supporters of a candidate and eventually an officeholder.


This should not be confused with the free-market, laissez-faire system that made America the most prosperous nation on the face of the earth. Millennials that joined the OWS – Occupy Wall Street – movement were right to demonstrate against the abuses that took place as well as the use of politically directed taxpayer funds to cover up for these abuses, but they should not castigate the system that brought forth the prosperity that we all enjoy.


Millennials should rally for economic freedom, a freedom that allows a vast majority of businesses in America to operate profitably without unnecessary government intrusions and taxation.


Millennials should rally for freedom to choose an insurance policy that fits their needs, not a government mandated policy. Young men should not be required to buy maternity coverage for themselves for the sole reason of subsidizing the policies for the rest of America.


Millennials should rally for federalism. In a time where the importance of social issues carries so much weight for them and attitudes vary from state to state, they should be crying for state’s rights.


Millennials should be rallying against invasions of privacy and for civil liberties. They should hold accountable the administration and supporters of domestic spying, interrogation of American citizens without due process, the assassination of American citizens without due process as well as the use of domestic drones against American citizens.


Millennials should rally against amnesty for illegal immigrants. It is only the corporatists and statists that will benefit from the change in legal status. Incorporating millions into the fold will benefit the corporatists with legally providing lower wages through greater competition for entry level jobs. The statists look to gain permanent control of the federal government by creating a permanent underclass that will be reliant upon greatly burdened social programs that will keep them in office in perpetuity.


Most Millennials I know are caught in between the feel good social issues of today and the reality that a country like ours can only survive if it is responsible with its use of power.


Here’s hoping they are firmly planted in reality.


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