As the Summer of 2020 heats up, Generational Expert Ann A. Fishman believes the values and attitudes of the Millennial Generation are most responsible for shaping public debate, and with it, the direction of social change in America.
“Born between 1982 and 2000, the Millennials have become the dominant voice in American society,” said Fishman, whose credits include authorship of the book Marketing to the Millennial Woman. “By leveraging Social Media to rewrite the rules of social dialogue, Millennials have dominated the political conversation; by seeing COVID19 as ‘another generation’s disease,’ they have become the foot soldiers in returning to normal life.”
Sandwiched between Gen X (1961-1981) and Gen Z (2001-2019), Millennials were raised in an era of relative affluence and calm, presided over by “helicopter parents” who nurtured mediocrity, built “safe spaces” to shield them from conflict, and fostered a kind of group-think which evolved naturally into the social movements of 2020.
“The G.I. Generation (1901-1924) helped win World War II, then rebuilt conquered countries. The Silent Generation (1925-1942) helped humanize society through the Civil Rights Movement and the feminist movement. Baby Boomers started the environmental movement, and Gen X, latchkey kids, urged their generation to ‘Don’t Stop Believin’,” said Fishman. “So far, the Millennial contribution has been a push toward socialism, and, in an effort to ‘save the world,’ a dramatic push toward a more fractured society.”
Here are three ways Millennials have shaped the debate, and impacted the most important news stories of the first half of 2020:
Changing Norms of Social Contact and Societal Interaction
Many Millennials renounced and disregarded social distancing by going to the beach, and taking to the streets in the thousands initially to protest the death of George Floyd. Are Millennials the generation who reopened America after a long period of quarantine, or will they be responsible for prolonging it?
Civil Rights and the Future of Race Relations
Will historians view Millennials as the generation that raised America’s awareness of lingering racism, or as the generation that sanctioned rioting, looting, burning, in the name of racial progress? Either way, they have been at the center of an intense societal focus on the state and future of race in America.
The Future Balance of Power
Millennials are a pivotal constituency for both Democrats and Republicans in the coming 2020 election, numbering more than 80 million potential voters, many of whom extend their political sway through Social Media. How historians evaluate what Millennials were able to accomplish in setting America’s political agenda, may be determined by how they vote in the upcoming elections …or by contrast, how other generations may vote against Millennials’ recent actions.
About Ann Fishman and Generational Targeted-Marketing
More information on Ann Fishman’s generational expertise can be found at www.annfishman.com. Fishman’s company, Generational-Targeted Marketing Corp. (GTM), LLC, specializes in marketing information that provides insight into consumer preferences, buying habits and trends affecting the American consumer. As GTM’s president, Fishman serves as a consultant to numerous corporations, government agencies and non-profit organizations, sharing information about generational issues. She’s also a former member of the Adjunct Faculty at New York University, is the recipient of four Senate fellowships and is the author of Marketing to The Millennial Woman.
SOURCE Ann A. Fishman