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Thread: Are generation x-ers and y-ers starting to one-up their predecessors?

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    Wrecker of Homes d'Anconia's Avatar
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    Are generation x-ers and y-ers starting to one-up their predecessors?

    I was thinking about this recently and let me first say this has nothing to do with the possibility of people under the 40's or 30's being genetically smarter. Evolution doesn't work that quickly.

    BUT

    I have noticed that with the access to information that we now have that young adults (I'm referring mostly to people 18-30 years old or so) don't seem to be buying the bull**** that previous generations did. Sure younger people tend to be more liberal but in general it seems like this age group looks upon the older generations almost with ridicule.

    I noticed a HUGE gap between ideologies of the average 40+ year old (more like 50+ year old) vs 18-30 year old when it came to the recent Presidential race. While the older generations considered the election of a black President "historic" or "historical" (which I'm still not convinced is even a word), the younger generations almost unanimously didn't give a **** what race Obama was. Young people got excited about Obama because he was young, he was cool, and most importantly he was intelligent. I didn't vote for Obama, I hate his ideologies but I'll be damned if he isn't a smart and well-spoken guy.

    As a 22 year old when I talk about Obama as President the issue of race doesn't even really come up. To us it has absolutely nothing to do with race but rather that a young intelligent guy (albeit with a dubious VP pick) was up against a warhawk idiot whose VP was dumb as rocks. Heck McCain even admitted he doesn't know how to use the internet whereas Obama, like most young adults, thrives with technology and can't help but love doing stuff on his BlackBerry.

    Many of us young adults grew up with computers. I grew up playing old-school games like Civilization, Colonization, Doom, and even Treasure Math Storm. I couldn't get enough of computer and I still can't get enough of them. I, like my fellow generation x/y-ers realize the power and importance of computers whereas most of our parents don't know how to use speakerphone or even what a text message is. I used to be 12 years old and having to teach my father, the one who bought the computer in the first place, how to do the simplest of tasks.

    The technological advances have created a huge gap between kids/young adults and their parent/grandparent generations and based on my experience it has almost reached the point of resentment. I have dated girls outside of my ethnicity while my grandfather seems to think they are all criminals. I've befriended gay people whereas when my grandfather or possibly even my father were my age an open homosexual would be persecute and quite possibly beaten up simply for their sexuality.

    I guess my question is: to you older members here (I don't mean old old, just over the age of 40 or 50), did you notice a growing disconnect between your generations and the preceding ones? To be honest we probably don't even have anyone over the age of 50 on here (which just proves my point) who visits regularly but another question might be whether our young generation might undergo the same tension or disconnect when we become older?

    In general I think the older generations, especially government officials, might want to be more careful about the sorts of things that they do. They appear to sometimes forget that the quality of their twilight years will depend upon the relationship between their generation and the younger ones. For instance Social Security for the Baby Boomers will fall on our shoulders. We will most likely foot the bill but realize the unsustainability of the system and minimize/abolish it for ourselves. I may be wrong but I believe we will be able to make sacrifices for what is right and just where other generations have failed.

    I suppose I'm blabbering. My generation might be as bad as any other but based on my experience I know there will be a larger portion willing to always do the right thing than generations in the past... in any given situation. We are armed with more information than any other in the past and boy the older generations better hope that this information doesn't lead to their condemnation.

    Older generation people might say or think that our generation is no different from theirs, aside from the environment in which we were brought up. They may say it because they don't like the idea of a generation being better than theirs but when I look ahead at myself as an 80 year old man... nothing would make me happier than my children, grandchildren, and their generations one-upping me. It at least means the world we're living in is going in the correct direction.

    PS I know this is a ramble but I must repeat once again that evolution doesn't drastically change within a few generations. I'd like to think my generation is innately smarter and better than the ones in the past but scientifically speaking that's very unlikely. I guess in the end what I'm asking is whether increasing technology and (for lack of better terms) globalization is increasing the gaps between subsequent generations.
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    Senior Member BilltheButcher's Avatar
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    The MTV generation or the ME generation as I like to call it, are lacking something - whether it be respect for other people, elders, our country etc. They believe they are entitled - they grew up in affulence compared to past generations - they had ever need met. There is no hunger or drive or desire - I see it at work all the time they do the minimal amount of work to get the job done, but then want praise and more money for simply doing their job. I really believe parents are doing a disservice to their kids by making them feel like they are #1 and special.

    I am in between 35 and this is what I see. People are getting older (30+) before they get married and have kids and have the actual responsibility of being concerned about job security, money to feed the famiy etc. Most people are liberals when they are younger without responsibility or careers in life and when they start having a family and start making substantial money they realize that paying taxes stinks and why is it that you are busting your butt everyday going to work so your taxes can go to pay some program or medical bills of someone that sits around doing nothing. Apathy sets in and you get angry at the easiest thing - the people you don't know which is another race. So when your 50 you'll start hating black people if your white, and according to the press and the pastor that did Obama's benediction all races already hate white people. I'm half asleep so none of this may make sense.
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    I'm with Bill on this one, the stuff that made sense at least. I think many young adults feel entitled and lack a certain amount of respect for their parents generation. I believe the lack of respect changes to some degree once young adults have more responsibilities and start to understand what their parents went through. I can definitely appreciate what my parents went through much more now that I have two kids and plenty of bills to pay.

    I disagree about the importance of race for the younger generations. My experience has been pretty much opposite of D'Anconia's. Most of the people I know voted for Obama and saw it as being a major accomplishment for this country. It was hard listening to them because many didn't know his policies, only that it was historic because he's black. People in my classes were almost in tears the night of the election because the early reports had him winning. These are fairly well educated grad students, most of them in their mid 20's and many of them white.

    Talking to young adults that are closer to 20, race is an even bigger issue. Many of them are simply racist and can't believe a black guy is president. I live in a rural area, but I'm still in NY and many of these people are in college as well. I think where you live plays a large role.
    Last edited by Mike G; 01-25-2009 at 08:23 AM.

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    THUNDER THIGHS! Fuzzy's Avatar
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    As a youngling on this forum... I'll go on with the respect point brought up.

    This increased awareness you speak of is bread out of the ability to 'learn' by a quick glance,to become knowledgeable by reading a quick article googled, basically my generation are experts before they do anything.

    I was/am much the same, what snapped me out of it was my coach and some other lifters, because I don't know ****. Because people do not have to necessarily collaborate with others for knowledge they delude themselves of their capabilities, they never develop properly.

    I'll leave it at that.
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    Senior Member BilltheButcher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzy View Post
    As a youngling on this forum... I'll go on with the respect point brought up.

    This increased awareness you speak of is bread out of the ability to 'learn' by a quick glance,to become knowledgeable by reading a quick article googled, basically my generation are experts before they do anything.

    I was/am much the same, what snapped me out of it was my coach and some other lifters, because I don't know ****. Because people do not have to necessarily collaborate with others for knowledge they delude themselves of their capabilities, they never develop properly.

    I'll leave it at that.
    Hey you may be young in years, but I have always respected your posts and insight they contain.
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    The thing is, Society changes. Your talking about your grandfathers generation being racist and/or intolerant of others. Well if you look back to your granfather's, grandfather (the same age gap between you and your grandfather) he may have been whipping slaves for not picking enough cotton. My point is that society changes, things don't always stay the same from generation to generation. That being said I think most kids my age are pussies compared to other generations (I'm 18). A lot of them don't do ****, they would fold if they were faced with some of the same situations that others had to face during the 1900's to 1950's. I don't think anyone on this site falls into that category. It takes a certain kind of person to stick with something, even though its hard as ****, have to make sacrafices, just because you can see the benefits on the horizon.

    This feeling of "resentment" between generations, I feel, is normal as well. Think of the 1960's and 70's, the younger generation was so far disconnected from the generations before them. I agree with the entitlement statement, but its not just younger generations. The universal healthcare situation right now is representative of that.
    Last edited by Tumbler; 01-25-2009 at 10:29 AM.

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    Chubbilicious. VikingWarlord's Avatar
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    While no one would admit it aloud, white liberals like Obama because he makes them feel less guilty.

    An intellectual evolution absolutely can happen that quickly, especially considering the advancements in every field that have been made over the last 20 years. Here's why.

    People will resist change because change means the unknown. No matter what a situation is, good or bad, people at large will resist changing even if it could result in a better situation. The older a person gets, the harder it is to change. The longer a conditioning goes, the harder it is to reverse. If someone grows up with something, it's become ingrained into his life whether he wants it to be or not. If he's older and a new technology comes along (the personal computer boom in the early 90s is a good example), older people are going to hesitate to jump on it just because they never had it before and can't imagine why they'd need one now. Even after seeing the relative benefits, it's still "Why would I want to do that? Never needed to before."

    It's the same way socially. Now in the age of advanced communications, we can reach out to people all over the world. Maybe you'll meet the love of your life in Zimbabwe on MySpace. That wasn't really an option 30 years ago. It used to be that being "progressive" was marrying a girl from the next town over. There just weren't many chances to get beyond that. Now that people in small towns have an easier time getting outside the homogeneity, they're able to do things that their fathers and grandfathers never had the chance to do.

    This kind of thing isn't really a big deal in larger cities. The major metropolitan areas have always been havens for this sort of thing because that's where everything hits. Cities tend to be more progressive than more rural areas just because of the constant influx of fresh blood from all walks of life.

    I've been lucky in that both sides of my family have been far more progressive than others. My maternal grandfather built his first computer from what amounted to a breadboard kit almost 25 years ago. He taught me how to build them when I was 12.

    As for what Bill said...truthfully I have absolutely no idea where that came from. I've dealt with a lot of people both young and old that have this sense of entitlement. No one will do any more work than is absolutely necessary to get whatever he's after.
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    Senior Member lakeripple's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by d'Anconia View Post
    I was thinking about this recently and let me first say this has nothing to do with the possibility of people under the 40's or 30's being genetically smarter. Evolution doesn't work that quickly.
    Actually, evolution does work that quickly, at least physically, and I would imagine mentally as well. Just as malnutrition can stunt the growth of a population within a generation, so too, can a good health services and diet lead to growth.
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    Quote Originally Posted by lakeripple View Post
    Actually, evolution does work that quickly, at least physically, and I would imagine mentally as well. Just as malnutrition can stunt the growth of a population within a generation, so too, can a good health services and diet lead to growth.

    Thats not evolution, which is a change in genetics. Changes in genetics, barring some sort of added process to increase mutations, doesn't work quickly.

    Generally speaking, every generation seems to be a bit better than the past globally. You can look at things like the Flynn effect and technology advancement if you don't believe me. Every past generation has a severe problem with this, for whatever reason, and talks about how spoiled the new generation is, which is ironic, because it could only be 'spoiled' because the past generation made things better.

    Every once in a while there's this study that comes out, or some old guy goes on some rant about how this new generation is spoiled or stupid, or whatever, but generally, each generation does get better barring some sort of catastrophe.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BilltheButcher View Post

    I am in between 35 and this is what I see. People are getting older (30+) before they get married and have kids and have the actual responsibility of being concerned about job security, money to feed the famiy etc. Most people are liberals when they are younger without responsibility or careers in life and when they start having a family and start making substantial money they realize that paying taxes stinks and why is it that you are busting your butt everyday going to work so your taxes can go to pay some program or medical bills of someone that sits around doing nothing. .
    Not that I am there yet or anything but I pretty much agree with that.

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    Senior Member BFGUITAR's Avatar
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    The human mind is an interesting thing of course.

    Here is how I think the human mind works.
    Over the past 10 000 years our brain really hasn't changed much. What has changed is the atmosphere the brain is in. Our brains thought the same way in Africa as they do now. BUT having an atmosphere with many unanswered questions along with lots of information breeds discovery and growth. The early 50s is a great example. After and during WW2 a ridiculous amount of technology and science was discovered. It was mainly used for war, but since the war ended the human mind took everything it saw in front of it and applied it everywhere he can. For example, Nylon was made as replacements for silk as a parachute... no one wants holes in their parachute from moths. Someone realized "Hey, I could use this as fishing line" or "this stuff sounds good on my guitar". A human mind 10 000 years old would have figured out the same thing (assuming he was raised in today's era).

    As for old people and new technology... they just don't care. The whole point of getting in to new technology is to better yourself in the future (and possibly others). Old people don't really have a future. They enjoy living their lives as they have and find learning new technology to be a hassle and annoying when they can happily live their lives as they do.

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    SchModerator ZenMonkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VikingWarlord View Post
    While no one would admit it aloud, white liberals like Obama because he makes them feel less guilty.
    That is the silliest thing I have ever heard. Dogma at its best.



    Regarding quick changes in society-

    Intellectual revolutions happen- and sometimes very quickly. As a matter of fact we are entering what will be eventually called "Post Secularism" where logic and reasoning will prevail. In the same way that postmodernism has always been a really problematic and contentious term, post-secular is just another attempt to fix a label on the questions that plague a particular era. For the last thirty years, most academics (at least in the humanities) have operated from the assumption that truth is a construct of cultural narratives or ideologies like religion or capitalism, and so a great deal of postmodern academics have set out to expose very deliberately and self-consciously these "fictions" that control us. Until very recently, though, academics have lacked a critical framework for offering Sacred (for lack of a better word) critiques of postmodernism. But that's starting to change, and the move has only been accelerated by 9/11. Many in the West have found the last year to be an occasion for re-examining spiritual beliefs and, just as importantly, for exploring the social and political currency in them. Once we've made a blanket statement like, "America's system of representational democracy is better than the Taliban," we've been forced to make an ideological commitment founded on something like objective truth. "Post-secular," I think, is one way of trying to find the vocabulary for this type of stand. It's a way of reconciling the good that was born from postmodernism, while acknowledging the value of the Sacred
    Last edited by ZenMonkey; 01-25-2009 at 06:11 PM.
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    Chubbilicious. VikingWarlord's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZenMonkey View Post
    That is the silliest thing I have ever heard. Dogma at its best.
    Whose dogma, exactly?
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    SchModerator ZenMonkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VikingWarlord View Post
    Whose dogma, exactly?
    Not sure what you mean, but why would white liberals be guilted into liking Obama?

    Youve gotta admit that one helluva generalization
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZenMonkey View Post
    Not sure what you mean, but why would white liberals be guilted into liking Obama?

    Youve gotta admit that one helluva generalization
    It's a generalization, but I believe there is a lot of white guilt in our society, predominantly found in the liberal population.

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    SchModerator ZenMonkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike G View Post
    It's a generalization, but I believe there is a lot of white guilt in our society, predominantly found in the liberal population.
    Its ludacris to say white liberals are guilted into liking Obama.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZenMonkey View Post
    Its ludacris to say white liberals are guilted into liking Obama.
    Do you know what white guilt is? If you don't believe it exists, then we just disagree on that.

    I'm not painting with a broad brush and saying everyone white person that voted for Obama did so because of guilt, but I do think there are plenty of people that have a lot of guilt simply because they were born white and would vote for Obama because of that.

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    Sounds like we agree
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    TJW jed's Avatar
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    i'll admit that i think my generation is obviously more technologically advanced and i think we may be able to adapt to various things better. but i also admit, from my short 17 years i've lived, that our generation has taken countless things for granted. probably half don't know how to work, because theyve had their lives fed to them on a silver platter. the older generation grew up as hard workers, but our generation is different in that aspect i think. ours is also more disrespectful, to elders and to our own selves. thats just IMO though, and i havent probably experienced enough of the world to say that is exactly what our generation is. i've only been through high school.
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    Wrecker of Homes d'Anconia's Avatar
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    I don't know if liberals pushed Obama out of guilt but I do know that it would have been quite possible for the GOP to push a black candidate in 2012 and possibly win. If that had happened then the Democratic Party would have pie all over their faces since they are supposed to be the tolerant civil rights party. I think they realized this and since the GOP didn't have a black candidate in the primaries they knew this was their chance to be the ones to put the first black President into office.

    People don't go from state Senator to President of the United States in 4 years unless some powerful people have a reason to push him to the forefront. Don't get me wrong he might end up being a great President but I'd argue it wasn't all his own hard work, experience, or track record that got him to where he is today.
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    "Nice Guy" Davey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by d'Anconia View Post
    I don't know if liberals pushed Obama out of guilt but I do know that it would have been quite possible for the GOP to push a black candidate in 2012 and possibly win. If that had happened then the Democratic Party would have pie all over their faces since they are supposed to be the tolerant civil rights party. I think they realized this and since the GOP didn't have a black candidate in the primaries they knew this was their chance to be the ones to put the first black President into office.

    People don't go from state Senator to President of the United States in 4 years unless some powerful people have a reason to push him to the forefront. Don't get me wrong he might end up being a great President but I'd argue it wasn't all his own hard work, experience, or track record that got him to where he is today.
    I know a lot of people are going to disagree with me on this hot issue but obama is not really black.

    His mom was a white American anthropologist:


    And here are his grandparents:


    That's one thing that I never understood, why is it that black guys who have one black parent and one white parents always consider themselves black?

    This is what I think about when I think about a black president.


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    Quote Originally Posted by BilltheButcher View Post
    Most people are liberals when they are younger without responsibility or careers in life and when they start having a family and start making substantial money they realize that paying taxes stinks and why is it that you are busting your butt everyday going to work so your taxes can go to pay some program or medical bills of someone that sits around doing nothing.
    I'd imagine that old people will see the advantage of taxes when they get cancer, lose their job, then can't get medical insurance as it's a pre-existing condition, and realise that keeping themselves alive will mean declaring bankruptcy and losing their life savings and everything they own. Or when their wife gets pregnant just after they lose their job and therefore their insurance. Of course, it's a pre-existing condition so they can't get any more insurance, and two days in hospital and an emergency caesarian costs twenty grand. There goes that mortgage deposit...

    Then they might look northwards and across the pond and realise that socialism ain't so bad after all.

    In fact I'd say that younger people will be more against taxes as they think they're invincible and will always have a job. Let them live through a depression or two, let them see loved ones die so private medical companies can make higher profits, then they might stop worshipping the precious free market.

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    Wrecker of Homes d'Anconia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davey View Post
    That's one thing that I never understood, why is it that black guys who have one black parent and one white parents always consider themselves black?
    Because he considers himself to be black. In cases where it might be mathematically 50/50 it would make sense to let the individual themselves choose which ethnicity they identify with.

    But yes I acknowledge one parent was white and one was black. The white mother was the one who raised him whereas his father apparently just kinda bailed for Africa or something like that.

    I kinda feel bad for half/mixed-race people because I bet they go through a lot of identity issues. If for no other reason than that full-white and full-black groups might not be willing to accept them as one of "their own".
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    Quote Originally Posted by d'Anconia View Post
    Because he considers himself to be black. In cases where it might be mathematically 50/50 it would make sense to let the individual themselves choose which ethnicity they identify with.

    But yes I acknowledge one parent was white and one was black. The white mother was the one who raised him whereas his father apparently just kinda bailed for Africa or something like that.

    I kinda feel bad for half/mixed-race people because I bet they go through a lot of identity issues. If for no other reason than that full-white and full-black groups might not be willing to accept them as one of "their own".
    I find it odd he considers himself "black". Just the way he has grown up, it seems he has not been around many African-Americans at all:

    *** Graduate of Columbia University (Only 5% of the students are black) and Harvard Law. I couldn't locate the demographic breakdown for Harvard Law, but it's somewhat more moot of a point since it'd make sense to go to the best law school which I would say Harvard is. I would think, if he considered himself "black", he would go to a more traditional black college for his undergrad.

    *** HS graduate of Punahou School, which is diverse, but not a large black student population.

    *** Stepfather was Indonesian.

    *** Did go to Occidental College before transferring to Columbia. Occidental College is 7% black.

    *** Raised by white mother and white grandparents. Only saw his father once after he was two.

    It's his prerogative to identify with whatever racial group he feels most comfortable with or both, but I still don't really understand him. He said, of his parent's being different races " ... barely registered in my mind", but then of his drug use in High School, it was because he wanted to "... push questions of who I was out of my mind".

    Why would he have to push questions of who he is out of his mind, or find an escape through the use of drugs, if being biracial does not register to him?

    He said he struggled with social perceptions of being multiracial, but I still find that hard to believe. He never cited any examples, and with the fine schools he went to, I think "struggled" is kinda reaching.

    The bottom line for me is I wonder why he's over-the-top called "black" by just about everyone, although it doesn't seem like he's really seen any struggles that a lot of blacks claim to face. He doesn't seem to identify with the black community at all.

    In regards to d'Anconia's comments about feeling sorry for mixed-race children, I see your point. However, even growing up in a "racist" state (and I use that term loosely -- I've seen more racism in NYC and Phoenix than I have ever seen in Alabama), multi-racial individuals that I've known don't see it as much of an issue at all.

    What I find funny is a lot of people say we should all be one race, and in the future, we'll be blended in perfect harmony and there would be an end to racism. If we're all one race, though, how could we celebrate diversity?

    Think about it.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Southern Beast View Post
    I find it odd he considers himself "black". Just the way he has grown up, it seems he has not been around many African-Americans at all:

    *** Graduate of Columbia University (Only 5% of the students are black) and Harvard Law. I couldn't locate the demographic breakdown for Harvard Law, but it's somewhat more moot of a point since it'd make sense to go to the best law school which I would say Harvard is. I would think, if he considered himself "black", he would go to a more traditional black college for his undergrad.

    *** HS graduate of Punahou School, which is diverse, but not a large black student population.

    *** Stepfather was Indonesian.

    *** Did go to Occidental College before transferring to Columbia. Occidental College is 7% black.

    *** Raised by white mother and white grandparents. Only saw his father once after he was two.

    It's his prerogative to identify with whatever racial group he feels most comfortable with or both, but I still don't really understand him. He said, of his parent's being different races " ... barely registered in my mind", but then of his drug use in High School, it was because he wanted to "... push questions of who I was out of my mind".

    Why would he have to push questions of who he is out of his mind, or find an escape through the use of drugs, if being biracial does not register to him?

    He said he struggled with social perceptions of being multiracial, but I still find that hard to believe. He never cited any examples, and with the fine schools he went to, I think "struggled" is kinda reaching.

    The bottom line for me is I wonder why he's over-the-top called "black" by just about everyone, although it doesn't seem like he's really seen any struggles that a lot of blacks claim to face. He doesn't seem to identify with the black community at all.

    In regards to d'Anconia's comments about feeling sorry for mixed-race children, I see your point. However, even growing up in a "racist" state (and I use that term loosely -- I've seen more racism in NYC and Phoenix than I have ever seen in Alabama), multi-racial individuals that I've known don't see it as much of an issue at all.

    What I find funny is a lot of people say we should all be one race, and in the future, we'll be blended in perfect harmony and there would be an end to racism. If we're all one race, though, how could we celebrate diversity?

    Think about it.
    Well there would always be individual diversity even if racial diversity no longer existed.
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