Easter egg Sanders cartoon gives ignorant view of youth


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Patrick Brennan

Young liberals — we’re all lazy and want free stuff, right? Well, we are lazy when it comes to certain economic and political participation, but the portrayal of general laziness is an ignorant assumption.

It could be argued that about 40 percent of campus fits into this category by supporting a socialist, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). A recent cartoon by Lisa Benson, distributed by the Washington Post and published in the Courier-Journal this past weekend, portrayed Sanders as a kind of authoritarian redistributor.

Since the economy is like an Easter egg hunt, the young and lazy would love to have Sanders come in and provide for them.

However, the economy is not like your friendly church Easter egg hunt. Benson could draw the situation more accurately with one group of kids in a nice field, another group trying to climb out of a steep ditch with few eggs, and a couple kids hoarding billions of eggs at the top of a massive mountain.

If those labeling millennials as lazy would take a second to reflect on why we might not have the same economic and entrepreneurial ambition, they would realize that it is the result of a broken system.

The American dream has been corrupted; hard work no longer guarantees a decent living. For many Americans, it now takes longer hours just to be able to meet the demands of debtors, and millennials do not have a romantic view of post-graduate life.

It seems like many young people, whether they perceive it or not, feel blocked from fair economic opportunity.

Politically, this generation is also less involved, with voting rates decreasing steadily since the 1960s. But at the same time, there is more conversation about how little youth voting matters.

Politicians often put young people last because they do not contribute money or influence. Also, American people on the whole have little influence over policy-making as compared to organized money, so it’s no stretch to say young people do not feel involved with politics. Still, it is wrong to call young people lazy.

Each generation is only ever lazy in reference to some particular actions. Human nature and levels of energy don’t change, only the things at which they are directed.

In this case, blockages from the economic and political system lead to a displacement. We then find outlets in other things, like hobbies, videogames or social life, but there’s no such thing as general laziness.

Moreover, most of the students at UK remain busy. Being in school means always having something to do, and managing to work at the same time is about as difficult as it gets. It would be ridiculous to call these students lazy.

Take, for example, Connor VanMeter, an agricultural biotechnology and computer science sophomore.

VanMeter takes about 18-19 hours per semester and works 20 hours per week in a lab.

“I spend most of the time here on the university (campus),” VanMeter said. “During the weekdays, I get 2 to 3 hours (of free time).”

The epithets thrown at young people are ignorant and misguided. We’re not generally lazy, and our laziness in respect to certain actions is based in our institutions.

Patrick Brennan is the assistant opinions editor of the Kentucky Kernel.

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