I followed The Hill on Facebook because at this point in my life, my interests have turned to all things political. It’s my very first election! Of course I’m going to be in the know! However, I’ve begun to only read the titles of the articles dominating my news feed (there are so many. Why are there so many.), because when I decide to read further, I see bias smeared all over the page. I mean…I guess it’s a media source, so I can’t judge it too harshly, but why can’t a girl just get straight facts about the people she’s about to vote for? Is it really so hard to type an article saying “This week Donald Trump said this outrageous fact, Hillary Clinton is still getting heat for her scandalous emails, and Bernie Sanders is winning”. That might have been a little biased….you get my point though, right? K good.
Here’s my problem. Today was one of those days I went against my better judgement and opened an article about how my beloved Bernie Sanders is rightfully kicking Clinton’s butt. (Mrs. Clinton, I pray to God every day that you do not represent my people as the first woman president. No hard feelings.) Let it be known, this article is the opinion of Eddy Zipperer, a contributor to the news site. However, in typical Shelby fashion, I now feel the need to point out everything I see wrong with his opinion. Like I told Mrs. Clinton, no hard feelings, Zipperer. Let’s begin shall we? The first few paragraphs were interesting and informative, with a good amount of voice in snide comments that I can respect from writer to writer. He even had a very nice explanation of the differences between capitalism and socialism, as sarcastic as it may be. “Capitalism is insensitive, and the free market is a bully designed to rob people of their uniqueness. If you want to be an actor, your bank account might quickly inform you that you are no Brad Pitt. If you feel destined to be a great American novelist, the power company has no qualms about turning the lights out on your dreams. Socialism loves you and thinks you’re talented.” For obvious reasons, this quote hits home. I’ve officially changed my major from theatre to communication studies, and it seems I’m still doomed because I refuse to settle and take a boring, well-paying job in this damned economy. Forgive me for valuing my mental health and happiness and wanting to follow my dreams. Why is that so wrong, and why are we taught to think this way?
Then Mr. Zipperer goes on to crush my hope in his article by stating “Millennial culture is all about big rewards for minimal effort: participation trophies of the mind.” Wait….excuse me? Minimal effort my ass! We’re drowning in debt, dragging our butts through school, getting shot up every freaking week, learning concepts we don’t even need in life just because they’re in our degree plans, and you think we’re all about minimal effort? How is that ok? We’re getting a college education, because that’s what we’re told to do. That’s what we’re told we have to do in order to get by in life. In order to get money in this capitalist system everybody seems to love so much. In order to not die of starvation and the elements, because the cost of living, higher education, and requirements for a career are rising faster than we can make it through semesters. Because we’re having to make difficult choices between following our dreams or making a decent amount of money at age 18. We’re barely adults at age 18! If you think we’re just trying to do the bare minimum in life, you’re sadly mistaken. We millennials were handed a crappy economy, a corrupted political system, and an impossible “life-start-up plan”, and you think we’re slacking. I’m gonna need you to back up.
Then he goes on to attack superheroes, because apparently that’s all Millennial Culture is about. They’re just stories, but to say superheroes are only famous because they “have some genetic mutation” is preposterous. They’re famous because they put their lives on the line to save entire cities of ungrateful people. They’re famous because they take their gifts and use them for the greater good, instead of personal gain. They’re famous because they are heroes who expect nothing in return. I will be the first to admit I’m not a huge fan of DC or Marvel, but you can’t hate on their inspiring stories. (Except Superman, I am a fan of him….that boy can fly me anywhere, any day. Mmm.) Somehow he planned to tie this into the minimal effort argument, which I honestly don’t understand. Every comic and movie involves superheroes ending up in epic battles with evil that destroy large parts of the city. Batman spent his entire life training and what not to avenge his parents deaths and save Gotham. Superman isn’t even from here (enter Mean Girls reference here, if you please) and he still works tirelessly to defend Earth! Any man I know would not degrade the superhero image like Mr. Zipperer has.
I’ll admit video games are nearly worthless, and reality tv has become quite ridiculous as I’ve grown up. You win there, Zipperer. However, the real world is full of hard work and doesn’t involve joysticks (thank God), but it is so not boring! It’s so beautiful and worth seeing, and you simply can not do that if you’re sitting behind a desk staring at a computer screen your whole life. I consider that a waste. Life is not boring beyond the television screen, especially when one is doing what they love instead of just getting by.
Now that we’ve got that cleared up, we can finally start into what this has to do with Bernie Sanders kicking Clinton’s butt in the polls. Zipperer thinks Sanders and the millennial generation’s agenda is focused on “transforming America to reward apathy” when in reality, all we want is a fair playing field. We’re not trying to make it easier to slack off, we want to leave college debt free like our counterparts in other countries. We want the wealthiest of America to quit screwing us over. We want a fair chance at happiness in life.
With all due respect, Mr. Zipperer, we don’t have endless opportunities. It really takes being a millennial to know that. Our country has failed us. Our country is not the same as when you were in our position. I switched my major, and I’m more content with life than I have been in a long time, but unfortunately I have 2 more years to be incredibly happy, because I have no idea what will happen when I leave college. I just want to write, Mr. Zipperer. You of all people should know how doomed I am in that dream. I follow Bernie because he gives me hope that I can hold on to my passions and not end up taking 5 types of pills because I’m so unhappy with life. I follow Bernie because he upholds my rights as a woman, and he’s been consistent throughout his career. Clinton has not. I follow Bernie, not because I want life handed to me with a red bow, but because I want to work my ass off in my favorite career. I follow Bernie because I shouldn’t be afraid of my future. My friends and I are not slackers in any way, but we faithfully follow Bernie because we believe in the future he promises. His promises mean something to us because he hasn’t failed us like every other politician running.
Thoughts on the subject? Questions? Arguments? Feel free to comment….I’m open for friendly debates. Want to read the article? Click here. Eddy Zipperer, if you ever read this, I hope you understand that as a Millennial, I have to defend myself and justify my standing. Thank you for your article.