“Laziness is a secret ingredient that goes into failure. But it’s only kept a secret from the person who fails.”
– Robert Half
According to science all my peers erroneously believe themselves to be awesome. Typically this is the point where I’m supposed to argue that young people can do anything and change the world. It’s an opportunity for me to make some fluffy motivational speech about ambition and idealism. However, this time I agree.
Between social media, porn, and video games; every loser can detach themselves from reality and escape into a fantastical realm of electronic opiates. I know plenty of people whose lives are train wrecks, yet they still feel entitled to everything. Some time ago, a guy I know was complaining about not having any money. “Why don’t start a website?” I offered. He claimed that he didn’t know how to. I told him that, if he wanted, I’d come over on the weekend and help him get the whole thing up and running. He responded that it sounded like too much work. That was the last time I ever gave him advice.
My first college experience sucked. I was 16 and went on a campus visit. Everybody I met was optimistic and wanted to save the world and do big things. They all sounded like they’d heard Robbin Williams speech from Dead Poets Society and taken it to heart. At this point I was barely old enough to drive, but I was still able deduce that most of these people would never do anything.
My second college experience also sucked. I was still 16 and spent the weekend at a university. Going in I imagined a cross between Mensa and Van Wilder. Instead I was met with a group of people gossiping about their fellow party goers, and a late night spent beating drunk guys at Super Smash Bros.
Nobody was actually growing up to save the planet or end government corruption, they were too absorbed in their own little world.
For a while I thought that my generation might actually be the laziest and most self-centered, something the baby-boomers always try to claim. Then I hung out with boomers. The only difference between them and us? Age. They’re still petty. They gossip. Their free time is spent watching television and complaining about the state of the world. “Someone should fix things, when I was your age we tried to make a stand…”
I have no problem with activism. There’s nothing wrong with donating time and money towards helping others. With that said, I do have a problem with planning your entire future around changing the world. You’d be far better off focusing on making money and being charitable with the excess, than you would solely pursuing a career in activism. Andrew Carnegie worked hard, amassed a fortune, and gave away $350 million dollars. Some guy who spends his life holding signs and changing his profile picture to the equality symbol will never even have an opportunity to make that kind of impact.