A record number of young Americans are now unemployed. According to a new report based on U.S. Census Bureau data, only 26 percent of American teenagers between the ages of 16 and 19 had jobs in late 2009 which represents a record low since statistics began to be kept in 1948. So why is this happening? Certainly it is much harder to find a job today than it was just 3 or 4 years ago. But are there other factors involved? Even when the economy was still flying high back in the middle of the decade, an increasing number of young people were moving back in with Mom and Dad after they graduated from college. Is it our fault for raising kids who simply cannot adjust to the real world? Is society to blame for all of the young Americans who believe that everything should be handed to them on a silver platter without them having to work for it? Or would young Americans be more than willing to step up if there were good opportunities available to them?
The quality of young adults in America today is a theme that a number of our readers have commented on recently. In particular, there were four comments that were so exceptional that we thought they deserved special attention and we have reproduced them below. If there is any hope for the future of America, it will be crucial for the next generation to step up to the plate.
But are they capable of it? Please read the following comments left by our readers and then post your own comment and let us know what you think....
I keep hearing conservatives say we need to get rid of “Social Security” and go back to when families took care of family members. These people have to be “out of touch with reality” because the family unit has been broken for years in this country and continues to break down. Disabled, elderly people, in general, have no family members willing to help them. Children and grandchildren often have no time for their older parents and grandparents and often feel that older and disabled folk are in the way and only contact them when they themselves need money or wish to check on their possible inheritance from older members of their family. Many young people think nothing of “stealing” from thier parents and elderly grandparents if they think they can get away with it. Many families with children have only one adult or parent to support and nurture the children and many women, right here in Missoula, Montana, are supporting thier “boy friends” and fewer and fewer “couples” are getting “married”. A large number of family units are in deep financial trouble as the good paying jobs keep disappearing and the materialistic young people feel they must buy the latest new toy or electronic gadget on the market. Even these college graduates often leave college with huge debts they incurred in the form of student loans and are often in serious financial trouble. Where is the “family” support and help for the elderly and disabled coming from??? Many young adults often try to make older folks feel they have outlived thier welcome no matter how hard they worked when they were young to help build the nation these young people feel belongs only to them.
I do know a few individuals in their 20s who are hard workers. One is my son. He was going to college full-time, employed part-time, participates in auto racing, and served in the Army Reserves as a staff sergeant. He was recruited by the race car owner because of his work ethic. He just graduated from college in December with a degree in mechanical engineering technology, has his resume out there and is waiting to hear back. In the meantime, he is working full-time in construction and part-time for a company that builds race car engines. I know I may be accused of being partial because he’s my son, but he is a good worker, loyal, dedicated, motivated, and engaged in whatever he is doing.
I’m 65, and came from very creative, old style common sense family. I know how to do so many things from scratch it would blow your mind. THAT is what gives me confidence.
SKILLS for life, on all levels. I can grow, cook,& preserve food.I can throw together a meal for 6 or more in a hurry out of almost anything. How many of you can make a noodle, a mainstay of hard times ? Can you grow a patch of potatoes? Repair shoes, make shoes for a small child. Hand sew? Mend or iron. Hand wash clothes. Do you know what basic tools are for. What if the web goes? Do you know how to use a library?
More to the point, can you tell when you can’t afford something? Can you tell when you need to go back down the technology scale to provide your needs, because that’s where it’s cheaper? Can you steam rice, mash potatoes? Stop a leak? Can you figure out the cost of your appliances so you know what to turn off and leave off?
Can you tell you can’t afford to use the dryer? Do you know enough about nutrition to know you need to plant a garden? Do you know how much effort is needed for basic jobs, or how long it takes? Can you make yourself get up and walk to get what you need when you have enough for food and gas, but not both? Skills are also nice for barter.
I saw a show on Western kids working in rice fields in Thailand. What BS.Supposedly they’d been there working for 6 weeks. They still had body fat and a double chin.Anybody doing day long hard agri work for 6 weeks would be getting lean and mean.
Character is built as you learn skills and come to respect your own efforts; then you understand the efforts of all. Morality isn’t a stamp you stick on someone, it’s innate unless it’s corrupted. I don’t know what’s happened to our lazy behinds, but it doesn’t seem to me we’ve had enough physical work required of us, so we don’t have a clue how much we’ll need to do..the whines will be heard to the skies, then weeping..we should start a skill bulletin board and tell each other what we know while we have time.
I work in an ER…. When the s–t really hits the fan, most Americans (90%) will totally fall apart… If they can’t handle a paper cut now (I kid you not!), can you imagine the chaos when things really get rough? When the vicodin runs out? Some parasites make 2-3 visits or more a week to the ER for BS….. the human devolution is truly mind-boggling…
90% of americans are totally worthless parasites… I hired an american to mow my lawn… he got a cell phone call in the middle of it, said he would come back, never did! I had to finish the half-mowed lawn myself….. I went thru 8 people mowing my lawn, till I finally found someone reliable, on time, gentle w the equipment, willing to work hard…… me! Yep, it is that bad… I hired myself to mow my lawn… Now I am hiring myself to plant it in wildflowers for the coming days when lawnmowing will become impossible…
One of the 8 failures was a 16 year old native born American kid doing some landscaping for me… I had to show him how to use a shovel. He had never picked one up before… Unbelievable! … I told him to slope the dirt away from the house so the water would run down and away from the foundation. He asked me, “What is slope?” I had to draw him a picture!! Pitiful… Down the toilet the american empire falls….