The ok, boomer meme is misdirected
December 9, 2019
A meme has never caused such a stir like the recent “ok, boomer,” whether it’s Baby Boomers claiming that its a slur or New Zealand politicians using it while debating. The meme, which I admit is often hilarious, is missing the real target of the anger: rich white men.
Ok, boomer started as a way to vent pent-up frustrations from boomers, people born between 1946 and 1964, who don’t understand that times have changed. Topics that are commonly followed by an ok, boomer are any mention of how they got a house with one job and how the minimum wage is enough, all said from the comfort of their large house and larger bank account. Here’s the thing, that’s not a common experience for all Baby Boomers.
17 percent of Latino Baby Boomers and 19 percent of black Baby Boomers were living in poverty in 2017, while only 7 percent of white Baby Boomers were. These people, although they classify as a boomer, have always had to work and are still working; they don’t have the privilege of being condescending to millennials about houses because they themselves don’t own a house. Maybe an upper-middle class white man could have made it through college with one job in the 20th century, but considering that 28 percent of Baby Boomers are non-white, they would have had a rougher go.
The concept that Baby Boomers ruined the job market and that millennials are the only ones struggling with jobs is frankly ridiculous. Nearly a quarter of all Baby Boomers are still working for a living, while millennials like Mark Zuckerberg are chilling with a net worth of 74 billion dollars. Being old doesn’t equate being rich, and being young doesn’t equate being poor.
The people who don’t understand the modern economy have always been the rich. Bill Gates and my father are both Baby Boomers, and the same week that Gates revealed that he had no knowledge of grocery store prices, my dad was working his two jobs to try and pay his bills.
I get the frustration at Baby Boomers who don’t understand that the world has changed, I really do, but if you’re going to point your fingers, make sure you’re actually pointing them towards the guilty.
Amelia Foster is a senior and the Print Managing Editor for RHSToday and Knight Writers. This is her fourth year on the staff, and her third as an editor....