When Thomas Jefferson wrote that “a little rebellion now and then is a good thing,” he didn't necessarily mean all-out revolution, but he certainly meant at least a normal swing of the social, political and cultural pendulum from one generation to the next.
Right now, one of those swings is long overdue. I'm talking about the revolt of Gen X, Y, and Z against the depredations inflicted upon them for the past 47 years.
Until now, my own “Silent Generation” was the biggest put down of a generation. After suffering through major crises like the Great Depression, World War II and Korea, we spent still more years living under the shadow of the bomb. And then came Vietnam. We thought our “silence” was just the price we had to pay for following “the greatest generation.”
That was before they started giving generations labels like Gen X, Gen Y, and now Gen Z – also known as “the millenials” – as if they were visitors from a planet called “millenia”.
But far more serious things have been happening to this new generation than being put down as a “Brand X” kind of generation. In fact, they are paying an incredibly high price for following in the shadow of the “Boomers.”
You have to look at the facts to see why Gen X, Y and Z should seriously consider changing their name to “Generation Why!” and start demanding “Why!” these things have been inflicted upon them without their consent. Here are just a few examples:
Since 1967, our national debt has grown 3 times faster that our Gross Domestic Product. Debt has gone up 63 times vs. just 20 times for GDP. Meanwhile, youth unemployment has soared to record highs. Yet the biggest burden of all that debt will fall on today's young people as the Boomers slide into retirement.
Today's young adults are leaving college with student loan debtas high as$40,000 to $100,000. That's even bigger than their parents' first mortgages when they started out. Such debt forces young people to postpone starting a family and buying a home by a decade or more. Then we wonder why housing hasn't fully recovered.
Liberal free trade policies have sent millions of jobs overseas while technology has eliminated millions more, reducing demand for all but the most highly skilled technical workers. Meanwhile, colleges keep turning out social studies majors, while illegal immigration floods the market for unskilled workers. That leaves many no place to turn but part-time jobs and a spare room in their parents' basement.
The Federal Reserve keeps the stock market climbing with low interest rates, while ordinary folks get crushed between low interest on savings and sky high credit card rates. For banks and the financial markets, it's win-win, but for Main Street and small business, it is lose-lose. How can this new generation survive in this environment?
Dog-eat-dog competition between big box retailers and internet monoliths make it impossible for many small businesses to survive and prosper. The result is less competition and fewer job opportunities for all.
Gen Why! has also seen America turned into a discount outlet for the world while millions of manufacturing and technical jobs have been shipped to China, Japan, India, Korea, southeast Asia, and Latin America. As a result, we are facing the longest, most persistent period of structural unemployment in our history.
Nobody has been hurt more than America's minorities by unrestricted immigration and savage competition for so-called “low wage,” entry level jobs that have always been the first step up the economic ladder for previous generation.
Compounding all of this are birth rates that we haven't seen since the lows of the Great Depression. Thanks to abortion, and more efficient birth control, we have had
57.7 million abortions since 1967
25.8 million missing as an echo effect of those abortions
124.1 millionprevented by more efficient birth control
207.6 million grandtotal of missing births since 1967
That adds up to a huge loss in our current population. If not for this attrition, the U.S. would have at least 525 million people and a GDP of $28 trillion today.
You just can't have such people losses without serious damage to the entire economy. Every great economy = people x (money + resources). Take people out of that equation and your economy quickly plummets, which is just what happened to the former Soviet Union after 50 years of abortion rates as high as 300 abortions for every 100 live births. Even today, Russia is still in a state of irreversible decline when it comes to population.
The question for today's younger generation is: How can we survive if we continue the destructive anti-people policies we have pursued for the last 47 years?
Our teen seminars close with a moving candlelight ceremony
Join our Gen Why! Campaign
Today's younger generation is the principal victim of the abortion epidemic that started in 1967. Fully 30% of that generation has been aborted. Many who survived also tell us they learned they were once scheduled to be aborted, but by the grace of God, somebody or something intervened.
However, today's young people are also our best hope for restoring America to a culture of life, but not if we fail to reach out to them with honest information.
Our seminars for teens show what can be accomplished through honest, open discussion. They show that the number of teens with strong pro-life views can be increased by an amazing 75%, and the number of confused kids in the middle can be reduced by 40%. After our seminars, even teens with pro-choice views decline by 15%.
Our Gen Why! campaign will extend that effort through more open discussion of abortion and related issues on this website and through social media and other channels of communication.
Help us change hearts and minds through positive, preventive education today. We'll respond by sending you our latest report on this amazing program right away.
"In America, public opinion is everything." -- Abe Lincoln
A wise man once wrote, “He who has a reason to live can endure almost anything, overcome almost anything, achieve almost anything.”
That’s something that today’s younger generation needs to consider to avoid becoming another “lost” generation. Finding a generation’s meaning is the key to its greatness.
The best example is “the greatest generation” which survived the perils of the Great Depression followed by tragic defeats at Pearl Harbor and the Philippines, and yet managed to marshal its resources and defeat the combined forces of one of the most evil alliances in history.
We still call it “the good war” because they were willing to endure almost anything and overcome almost anything to win it. They believed in something – human rights and human freedom – and they were willing to fight and die for it. And they won.
They also believed in their future. They returned from the war, went to school, worked hard, launched the baby boom and with it the greatest period of prosperity in our history.
By comparison America today seems sadly adrift. We have shipped most of our manufacturing and millions of jobs overseas. We are no longer viewed as the leader of the whole free world. We have grown weak in our response to threats to freedom every bit as serious as any we have faced before.
Here at home, we are more caught up in the pursuit of pleasure and entertainment than we ever were in our search for meaning and achievement. The average American today spends 52 hours a week watching television or on the internet. Add an average of 9 hours a day of cell phone use, and it’s a wonder young people have time left to eat or sleep. No wonder our labor participation rate is hitting new lows.
Even more serious, our courts treat life itself as something with so little meaning that in the U.S. alone we have mindlessly discarded 58 million lives through abortion as if they were worth nothing in terms of moral, spiritual, social or economic value.
That’s five times as many people as died in Hitler’s concentration camps. And yet, after the war, the world proclaimed “never again.” But here we are doing the very same thing far more efficiently than Hitler ever did, and we are doing it to ourselves.
Sadly, the full impact of that has fallen on today’s younger generation. Fully 30% of Gen X, Y, and Z have had their lives snuffed out even before they could take their first breath. And then we wonder why so many in this generation feel lost and adrift – with no real meaning in their lives. If life is so cheap, how can it have meaning?
Earlier, we called on Gen Why to start applying its critical thinking skills and start questioning why we are following destructive practices like abortion. If they want a better future for themselves and their children, they’d better start asking “Why?”
That’s a question frequently asked by recent college graduates, especially if jobs are hard to find and suddenly an opportunity to accept an unpaid internship pops up.
When that happened to me, I had to ask: “Should I take an internship as a first step into the job market? Or keep on looking for that dream job I imagined as the first step in a career related to my college major?”
I never imagined doing an internship, especially after college. In my case, it became an opportunity to practice a little humility and accept the fact that I still had a lot to learn.
Like a lot of opportunities, it came out of the blue.
I had planned on working full-time after I graduated but started having health problems in my senior year. When I graduated, I was still not feeling well and decided to look for volunteer work while I took more time to heal.
I was always interested in the pro-life cause but had never gotten actively involved. So I took this “pause” in my life to email the president of our local Morris County Right to Life to see where my skills might be needed. He got back to me right away saying there was an event coming up where volunteers were needed.
I jumped right in, and quickly found that one thing often leads to another.
There I met Dennis Howard, founder of the Movement for a Better America, who happened to be looking for young people to help with a new program addressed to young people called their “Gen Why” campaign.
That turned out to be a great opportunity—not just to volunteer for an hour or two a week, but for a challenging internship experience where I could improve my skills and help further a cause I strongly believed in.
Of course, it helps if an internship is more than just a way to add a line to your resume, but a challenging learning experience as well. Fortunately, Dennis was the kind of leader who felt a strong calling to serve as a mentor.
He hadn’t forgotten his own experience as a young writer 65 years ago who benefitted from the help he got from older mentors on the staff of The Sun Herald of Kansas City, America’s last attempt to publish a Catholic daily newspaper. Within the next seven months he had done just about every job you can do on a daily newspaper, including running the city desk for two weeks while the city editor was on vacation.
He told me, “The Sun Herald turned out to be my on-the-job journalism school.” It was also the beginning of his long career in journalism and marketing.
Having that kind of mentor is the real key to a successful internship.
For starters, Dennis needed my viewpoint as a young person to help develop their new “Gen Why” campaign. It’s addressed to Gen X, Gen Y, and Gen Z – the entire younger generation that has borne the brunt of the abortion epidemic. Fully 30% of that generation has been aborted. It is also the younger generation who will face the greatest challenge from the disastrous future economic impact of abortion.
This turned into a hands-on course in strategic planning and critical thinking as well as benefitting from Dennis’ wisdom and guidance in writing, marketing, and fundraising, all of which will be valuable if I ever find myself applying for a similar position at another pro-life or other non-profit organization.
To cap off my experience, I was able to travel to New Hampshire to participate in the Bringing America Back to Life Conference where Dennis was a featured speaker. I got to travel to a state where I’d never been before, hear a lot of interesting speakers, and observe bits and pieces of the GOP presidential campaign in action.
As part of my internship experience, I also attended two brunches sponsored by the Legal Center for Defense of Life where I heard Dr. Angela LanFranchi and Mother Dolores Hart speak and met each of them briefly. What an inspiration to hear from women like these, and to read their books.
I also had a chance to write articles I never would have written on my own. I even got my first published by-line on the MBA website. You can read them if you like at: http://www.movementforabetteramerica.org
In short, I learned that what every young person should look for in an internship is an opportunity to grow in experience, confidence and hope for a better world and a better future. A good internship must be a two-way street, an opportunity to give and to grow.
The most precious thing that I gained was knowledge about myself. I learned my strengths, my weaknesses, what I like doing, what I don’t like doing, who I am and who I am not. This self-knowledge and all the memories from my internship will stay with me wherever my future takes me, either in the pro-life movement or elsewhere.
I would encourage any pro-life young person to consider getting involved in a volunteer or internship experience like this one. Not only will you gain skills and experience that will be valuable for your future, but you’ll feel good knowing you are giving your time to something meaningful. And that’s priceless.
For more information about an internship or about our “Gen Why” campaign, contact Youth Outreach Director, Movement for a Better America, PO Box 472, Mt. Freedom, N.J. 07970-0472
Anne Reisner is discovering new talents as a pro-life writer, researcher and member of our Gen Why campaign team. In her first year working with us, she has made significant contributions to our newest strategy – focusing on today's younger generation, which we are calling “Generation Why!” – stressing the need to change the current social, cultural and political climate that supports aborting 30% of today's younger generation. Anne graduated from the College of St. Elizabeth after spending 3 semesters at Drew University, where she belonged to the campus pro-life group.